Swindon Town 1-3 Bradford City: Dominant Bantams bounce back
Above: Richard O'Donnell in action for Bradford City (Photo taken by Will Matthews/Getty Images)

Bradford City responded to their midweek drubbing with a dominant display against Swindon Town.

The Bantams supporters were left frustrated after a heavy defeat to Hartlepool United on Tuesday, but Derek Adams' squad overcame a difficult Swindon challenge to rise to 11th in the Sky Bet League Two table.

It was Caolan Lavery who opened the scoring on his first start for the club with an excellent volley, before Levi Sutton doubled the away side's advantage.

Theo Robinson grasped his first goal for the club in spectacular fashion, before former Bradford man Jack Payne disposed a consolation penalty.

  • Teams

Swindon Town: Wollacott; Odimayo, Baudry, Crichlow-Noble, Hunt, Gladwin, Williams, Reed, Payne, Simpson, McKirdy

Bradford City: O'Donnell; Threlkeld, O'Connor, Canavan, Foulds, Watt, Songo'o, Gilliead, Sutton, Lavery, Cook

  • Story of the match

Flashback to Tuesday night, and within the first minute, Bradford were down by a goal thanks to Mark Cullen

But whilst it wasn't the opening attack today, Bradford flipped their faults on Tuesday and took an early lead through Lavery, making his first start for the Bantams.

The attacker latched onto a long throw from Oscar Threlkeld, which was helped along by Alex Gilliead before he pounced to direct the ball past Jojo Wollacott and to give Bradford the lead within the opening fifteen minutes.

Lavery almost doubled his and Bradford's advantage, but his strike was blocked fantastically by Mathieu Baudry. In fact, Lavery was the caue of all of Swindon's problems, forcing Wollacott into a save and Romoney Crichlow-Noble into a crucial clearance.

But the Bantams eventual pressure was rewarded, and on his 100th EFL appearance Sutton followed in Andy Cook's close-range strange to bundle the ball over the line.

Heading into the second half, and Bradford continued to mount the pressure for a third, as Sutton and Lavery shared chances that both evaded the target narrowly.

Cook would've been the more frustrated however, as the towering forward excellently controlled a surging long ball, before turning Rob Hunt and somehow scooping the ball over Wollacott's goal from seven yards out.

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Swindon weren't down and out yet however, and Payne was eager to show this, as he forced Richard O'Donnell into a save from his swerving drive. 

But if Lavery or Sutton wanted to take the reigns for the goals, they weren't going to be allowed to have all of the bragging rights- they belonged to Robinson. In some style, on his first start for the club, the former Huddersfield Town attacker picked up the ball from the edge of the box and curled an insatiable effort into the far corner, sending the away stand into pandemonium.

The celebrations were short-lived however, before Threlkeld foolishly handballed in the penalty box, allowing Payne to respond with a complimentary consolation goal and firing the ball past O'Donnell.

With time running out, Bradford defended valiantly, with O'Donnell performing a class stop to deny Harry McKirdy and to confirm a crucial three points for the Bantams

  • Takeaways

A bad day at the office

Swindon have been in excellent form as of late, unbeaten in seven game and defeating the league leaders Forest Green Rovers, but today it just didn't go to plan.

Defying the early season expectations, the Robins currently sit in the play-offs, but were undone by some gritty play from Bradford who were clearly motivated from previous poor form and the recent history between the two clubs. With the challenge of Oldham Athletic coming up next, Ben Garner will use this defeat as the ingredients to improve for the future.

Adams' deserves credit

Fans have been massively frustrated with recent Bradford performances, with a lack of the finishing touch and some truly shoddy possession controlling in recent weeks.

However, Adams deserves full credit for today's performance, and his change in tactics which instrumented the result. Switching to two strikers up front was clearly the correct decision, whilst transitioning Gilliead into a more central role and pushing the full-backs forward. It was the change in tactics that brought out the best of the players, and it's good to see a risk not backfire.

  • Star man

​​​​​​​Caolan Lavery

Despite an excellent performance for most Bradford players, debutant Lavery looked inspired today, being the root of Swindon's problems and terrorising the defence. It is such a confidence boost to the player to have nabbed his first goal too- and it is exciting to see what's to come for the forward. 

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