Bradford City v Peterborough United - Preview
Peterborough United travel up to Yorkshire to face unbeaten Bradford City with a threadbare defence. Can they bring back another three points?
Bradford City -Vs- Peterborough United
Venue: Coral Windows Stadium (aka Valley Parade)
Date: Saturday, 23rd August, 2014
Posh went down to a disappointing defeat in midweek when Sheffield United staged a smash and grab to take three points back to Yorkshire. They will be hoping they can bring three points back from Yorkshire on Saturday when they face an unbeaten Bradford City.
The Bantams have had an excellent start with two wins and a draw in their first three League matches and a win in the first round of the Capital One Cup.
HEAD TO HEAD
There have been 28 competitive matches played between these two sides with just two of them coming in the League Cup with the rest coming in the League.
There is virtually nothing to split the teams with the Bantams having won eight League matches compared to nine wins by Posh. There have also been nine draws.
The two sides first met in League action in 1968/69 when Stuart Brace and Jim Hall scored the goals for Norman Rigby`s men at London Road to earn their side a share of the points. The return fixture saw the Bantams win the last match of the season 2-1; Peter Price scored the Posh goal but Jim Iley was now the Posh manager.
It was all even last season with both sides winning their home fixture. Posh fans received an early Christmas present as they won their last match before the Christmas break 2-1. It will be remembered for "that goal" by Kgosi Ntlhe which went on to win the Vital Posh December Goal of the Month:
The return fixture saw the Bantams seal all three points thanks to a single Adam Reach goal. Posh hopes of getting back into the match was dealt a blow when Shaun Brisley stupidly received two yellow cards in the space of two minutes!
Former Posh striker Aaron McLean is hoping to gain more match time as he continues his recovery from injury. Mason Bennett is keen to get the nod over McLean though after coming on as a second half substitute for McLean in midweek. Bennett is on loan from Derby County and scored his first goal for the club in that midweek win over Crawley Town.
Fellow striker Billy Clarke again misses out with a hamstring injury but James Hanson will start up front with either McLean or Bennett.
Posh have a defensive crisis at the moment with injuries to centre-backs Jack Baldwin, Gaby Zakuani and Michael Bostwick. Ricardo Santos has recovered from an injury that forced him off in the midweek defeat to Sheffield United.
Left back Kgosi Ntlhe is battling with a hip injury which also forced him off in midweek. He is not expected to be fit in time for the match but Darren Ferguson is giving him as much time as possible to recover before naming his team.
Winger Kenny McEvoy injured his foot scoring the opening goal in last weekends win over MK Dons and is expected to miss the match with the Bantams while fellow winger Jon Taylor is rated as 50/50 to recover from a niggling knee injury that has seen him substituted in every League match so far this season.
Summer recruit Erhun Oztumer is still out injured with a hip injury and has yet to feature for Posh in a competitive match this season.
Christian Burgess signed on an emergency loan for Posh just hours before the midweek game and made an earlier than expected debut when coming on for the injured Santos. He converted the loan into a four-year contract on Thursday and is expected to start the game against Bradford.
Posh have played a 4-4-2 formation this season but that may change depending upon who is available for selection. If Ntlhe is unavailable, Posh could revert to three at the back or play Santos at right back while switching Michael Smith to left back.
Vital Posh predicts the starting line-up will be:
3 - James Hanson
1 - Mason Bennett
1 - Billy Knott
1 - Aaron McLean
1 - Alan Sheehan
3 - Kyle Vassell
1 - Kenny McEvoy
1 - Shaun Brisley
GRAHAM SALISBURY will take charge of the match.
To find out more about the official CLICK HERE.
He will be assisted by Glen Hart and Ryan Johnson.
The fourth official is Thomas Bramall.
Despite having an injury crisis, Posh will hopefully show that they have enough strength in depth to bring something back from Bradford. The Bantams are unbeaten so far though and will be another big test for Posh.
Posh to draw: 1 - 1.
Don`t forget you can predict the Bantams v Posh match. Vote for what you think will be the score HERE. Voting closes at 2pm [Saturday, 23rd August].
UP THE POSH
Photo courtesy of www.theposhpics.com
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