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Latics Defeat Bradford

5 April 2014

Jonson Clarke-Harris' double inspired Latics to an impressive 3-2 victory over Bradford City at the Coral Windows Stadium.

James Wesolowski opened the scoring for the visitors, before Adam Reach equalised on 37 minutes. Clarke-Harris put Latics back ahead before half time and extended the lead after the break with a neat finish past the goalkeeper.

Gary Jones pulled a goal back for the Bantams deep into additional time but Latics held out for victory to extend their unbeaten run to five games.

In a first half of little chances, both sides struggled in the early stages of the game as it was a battle of the midfield.

Latics took the lead on 22 minutes through Wesolowski. Connor Brown crossed onto the head of Clarke-Harris, who nodded the ball down superbly for the onrushing midfielder to smash home the opening goal of the game. 

The visitors started to dominate the game, pressuring the Bradford defence into making mistakes.

With neither side really looking likely to score, the Bantams found an equaliser through Reach. Defender Matthew Dolan won the ball from Danny Philliskirk in midfield and played an inch-perfect ball over the top to the Middlesbrough loanee to slot past Paul Rachubka. 

Just as the sides looked set to enter half time level, Athletic managed to snatch the lead going into the break. Gary Harkins jinked in the area, nutmegged a defender and Clarke-Harris thundered the ball past Jon McLaughlin to send Latics into the break with a one goal advantage.

Latics started the second half in positive fashion as David Worrall delivered two great crosses into the box which had to be dealt with by the Bantams defenders.

Clarke-Harris doubled his tally for the afternoon and extended Latics' lead on 57 minutes. Jonathan Grounds played a superb ball through to the striker who raced clear to comfortably place his shot past McLaughlin to give Latics a clear lead.

Only minutes later and Danny Philliskirk came inches from making it four. The ball settled perfectly for the forward on the edge of the box but his shot just went the wrong side of the post.

Bradford made a double change in the hope to get back into the game but it was Latics that continued to press the Bantams defence.

On 70 minute, Worrall cut inside from the right and unleashed a shot which was well saved by the goalkeeper. 

The game started to heat up going into the final 15 minutes as the referee booked several players, including James Wilson, Grounds and Brown, as he made himself unpopular with supporters.

Latics kept possession well as Bradford struggled to get hold of the ball and trouble Rachubka in Latics' goal.

As the game approached the final minutes of the game, it was the visitors who were singing loudest.

Harkins got himself to the byline and fired a ball across the box but it was dealt with by the Bradford defence. 

The home side did get a goal back in the final minute of additional time through Jones but it was Latics that came away with the impressive victory. 

Oldham Athletic: Rachubka, Brown, Lockwood, Wilson, Grounds, Worrall (Dayton 90'), Smith, Wesolowski, Harkins, Philliskirk, Clarke-Harris.

Subs not used: Coleman, Gafaiti, Dunfield, MacDonald, Winchester, Millar.

Bradford City: McLaughlin, Darby, Dolan, Davies, Drury, Stead (McBurnie 65), Jones, McLean (Yeates 83'), McArdle, Reach, Bennett (Thompson 65').

Subs not used: Barker, McHugh, Bates, Stockdill.

Goals: Bradford City (Reach 37', Jones 90+4') 2-3 Oldham Athletic (Wesolowski 22', Clarke-Harris 45', 57')

Attendance: 14,920 (1,322 visiting supporters)

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