Date: 1st January 2008 at 7:12pm
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ACCRINGTON STANLEY boss John Coleman has been left wondering what he can do to grab the vital home victory that is evading him at the moment.

Stanley went in to the game off the back of two fantastic away victories, with 2-1 wins at both Grimsby Town on Boxing Day and Mansfield Town on Saturday. So things looked good for the visit of Bradford City on New Years day, but come five o’clock that evening the optimism was gone and Coleman was left thinking of what to do next.

Stanley re-signed midfielder Andy Todd on an emergency loan deal on New Years day from Rotherham United, and the former Stanley favourite was brought straight back in to the starting 11, replacing Ian Craney who has now returned to Swansea after his loan deal expired.

Stanley made a strong start at the Fraser Eagle Stadium in front of just under 2,900 fans, but it was 27-year-old Bantams defender Matt Clarke who ultimately stole the three points for Stuart McCalls men, and ensured Stanley will have a miserable start to 2008.

The winning blow came just two minutes in to the second half, with Stanley still getting going, when the strong centre back cooly slotted the half cleared ball from inside the six yard box, following a mix up from Paul Evans’ front post cross.

A stoppage time effort from young midfielder Joe Colbeck sealed Stanley’s fate, who never looked like recovering from going a goal down early in the half. Although playing with real authority, the win was only Bradford’s third win of the season whilst on the road.

The entertainment started long before the Bradford goals though, with referee Barry Knight having to be “substituted” after just 12 minutes at The Fraser Eagle Stadium. He was replaced by the fourth official.

Knight, is a Premiership referee from Orpington and was making his return from injury after being out since October 2005 with a knee ligament injury.

Stanley striker Roscoe D’Sane could have put Stanley ahead in the first half, only to see his effort blocked by City’s Jamaican International goalkeeper, Donovan Ricketts, whilst Ricketts’ fellow countryman Omar Daley had Bradford’s best chance of the opening half, but his shot curled wide of Ian Dunbavin’s far post.

Stanley almost made the comeback after going a goal down, but Mark Roberts’ powerful header almost broke the crossbar before bouncing behind for a goalkick. Colbeck then went on to bag the second and bring an end to Stanley’s winning run.

STANLEY: Dunbavin, Roberts, Edwards, Webb, Richardson (Brown 73), Proctor, Harris, Miles (McGivern 73), Todd (Dennehy 73), Mullin (c), D’Sane.
Subs: Fearon, Dennehy, Carden.


BRADFORD: Ricketts, Wetherall, Williams, Clarke, Heckingbottom, Colbeck, Bullock, Evans, Daley, Conlon, Thorne.
Subs: Bower, Penford, Nix, Rhodes, Topp