Five matches into a hectic pre-season schedule for Sky Bet League Two side Bradford City, and the newly appointed manager Derek Adams is yet to taste defeat at his new home.

The Bantams have so far faced two higher division sides and three local outfits, defeating Doncaster Rovers, Blackburn Rovers, Bradford (Park Avenue), Guiseley and Brighouse Town.

Adams will likely be most pleased with today’s result, which saw the Bantams overcome a strengthened Blackburn side including the Championship’s second top scorer from last season, Adam Armstrong.

Here are the five points which City fans can take from their pre-season adventure. 

  • Awesome Attacking Options

Something which the Bantams have struggled with in recent years is a clinical striker to really propel a promotion push- and this year it looks as if the club have two.

Andy Cook is a recognised face amongst the frontline, due to his heroics towards the end of last season and his known reputation for being a formidable forward in front of goal.

The newer and more unknown option is that of 6’1 striker Lee Angol, who has struggled for form in recent years but has kick started his Bantams career in flying colours, following three goals in five outings.

Speaking to the Bradford Telegraph & Argus, Angol recently admitted that he knew he was under pressure, saying: “I know I’ve got a lot to prove to myself and to Bradford fans, but I like that sort of challenge.”

  • Defensive stability

A key feature in every promotion challenging team, defensive stability can sometimes be the difference between no points and three.

However, Adams appears to have adopted a much more physical approach to his Bantams side with the addition of the towering Fiacre Kelleher and Oscar Threlkeld, as well as the defensively solid Liam Ridehalgh.

With two clean sheets against higher opposition sides, it’s looking good for Adams defence, with communication and quality clear to see. A major positive is also the amount of squad depth currently available as well, with Reece StauntonMatty Foulds, Finn Cousin-Dawson and Jorge Sikora all supplying the necessary back-up. 

  • The return of supporters

Whilst it’s of course not yet to full capacities, Bradford fans have rejoiced at their return to the Utilita Energy Stadium.

With over 1000 fans in both of their home friendlies, the Bantams have enjoyed the return with images being posted to social media and a real buzz around the stadium.

The improvement to the seating and fresh look upon the subs bench has given the West Yorkshire side a much more professional look, but along with that the staff have been excellent, handing out free bottles of water in the hot conditions and ensuring that social distancing and safety measures are in place across the ground.

  • Middlemen back-up

​​​​​​​The position which lacked the most depth throughout last season was without a doubt the central of midfield, with Callum Cooke being favoured as an attacking midfielder, it left Elliot Watt and Levi Sutton to push their bodies to the limit. 

However, Adams has recognised this problem and has opted to bring in a new face, with Yann Songo’o joining the ranks, but the former Morecambe manager has also utilised the likes of Gareth Evans and Staunton in a defensive midfield role throughout pre-season, with the pair both looking more than capable to fill the void. 

  • The project

​​​​​​​One common denominator between each new signing is their talk of the ‘project’ currently going on at the club.

This brims ambition amongst not only the fans and players, but also the board at Bradford, something which has lacked since the dreaded reign of former owner Edin Rahic. Along with this, the improvement to the stadium, a new retro-style kit to change up the recent designs of the home kit, and also the promise of a fourth kit this season, which will include the names of certain fans. 

Their is a real buzz of togetherness currently at the Utilita Energy Stadium, whether if that is the return of fans, the work of CEO Ryan Sparks, or the managerial talents of Adams, it’s an exciting time to be involved with the club, with all eyes currently set on promotion and a return to Sky Bet League One

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