A late penalty from in-form Bradford City man Callum Cooke granted Mark Trueman and Conor Sellars their first victory in permanent charge against Leyton Orient.
Trueman and Sellars agreed to become the League Two club’s joint managers on a permanent basis yesterday, and enjoyed their first outing at Valley Parade- even if it did lack the fans.
The duo had won seven of their first 11 interim games, and takes 24 points from a possible 33.
The O’s were lacking form, having failed to pick up a victory in their last five games, including two defeats.
Bradford City: Hornby; A O’Connor, P O’Connor, Canavan, Wood, Watt, Sutton, Vernam, Cooke, Evans, Rowe.
Leyton Orient: Vigouroux; Akinola, Thompson, Happe, Brophy, Freeman, Cisse, McAnuff, Wilkinson, Johnson, Kemp.
Story of the match
In what was a slow start to the occasion, Dan Kemp was brought down on the edge of the City box. Up stepped the in-form Jobi McAnuff, but his free-kick was deflected wide by a valiant Bradford wall.
The first real chance of the game fell to the Bantams, as some intelligent build up involving Levi Sutton, Charles Vernam and Danny Rowe ended up with Gareth Evans, whose shot was well saved by Lawrence Vigouroux.
McAnuff and Kemp continued to be heavily involved, as the ball was played into the former West Ham winger but he could only bend his shot around the wrong side of the post.
With a half of very few chances, the referee brought the first half to a close with neither side really testing one another.
Bradford came out hungry, as a long kick from goalkeeper Sam Hornby fell to Rowe, and with all the time in the world he hesitated before Vigouroux rushed out to collect.
The home side continues to search for the opener, as Cooke fed the ball into Evans on the wing, but his strike was stopped at the near post.
Ollie Crankshaw, who had just come onto the pitch in the place of Evans, pounced onto an excellent first time ball from Cooke but Vigouroux once again did brilliant in keeping out the first goal of the game.
However, as the game approached its closing stages, Bradford had the breakthrough. Crankshaw, who had had a brilliant impact off of the bench, was fouled in the box by Adam Thompson, the former Bradford player. Up stepped Cooke, who was composed in firing the ball into the roof of the net and propelling the Bantams into the lead in emphatic fashion.
Following some late pressure from the away side, and some valiant defending from the Bradford back-line, it was the Bantams who snatched the three points thanks to a late Cooke penalty.
A monumental victory for Trueman and Sellars, who mark their first victory in permanent charge of Bradford City.
Whilst it wasn’t a vintage display for the Bantams, what’s important for a manager is to take the points even when the performance hasn’t been top notch, something Bradford did today.
Consecutive clean sheets is also a huge positive, demonstrating the impressive improvement Niall Canavan has brought into the back-line.
Leyton Orient need to rekindle their form quickly, as they continue to to slip down the table and have their play-off hopes dwindle. They didn’t create enough chances and mismanaged too many free-kicks to really penetrate the Bradford defence.
In a game which didn’t boast excellent stand out performances, Cooke was once again the hero and man of the match as his form prevails. Vigouroux also deserves the plaudits for a solid performance in goal.