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Match Reports

Bradford City 0-0 Latics

20 March 2021

© Eddie Garvey

Latics earn themselves a hard-fought point in the fourth fixture against Bradford City this season.

Keith Curle made one change to his starting XI with Harry Clarke returning from injury replacing Andrea Badan in the Latics back five. Additionally, goalkeeper Laurie Walker extended his emergency loan in order to play instead of the injured Ian Lawlor

The Bantams began the encounter with a few half-chances and the first of which fell to former Latics striker Danny Rowe. The 32-year-old made room for himself on the edge of the box and, in typical fashion, blasted an effort on goal, but Walker parried the strike away from target.

Following that, the inform Alfie McCalmont lost possession deep inside the Oldham half which allowed Levi Sutton to drive towards goal before smashing his effort way over the crossbar.

The visitors should’ve been ahead in the 16th minute as Marcel Hilssner’s corner found Davis Keillor-Dunn a yard away from goal, but his header was deflected over the crossbar to the relief of the Bradford dugout.

Curle’s side began to get a foothold in the game and Clarke showed incredible vision to pick out the onrushing Conor McAleny with a ball over the defensive backline. Latics’ top goalscorer brought the ball down and dribbled forward, but his attempt from a tight angle was comfortably saved by another ex-Latic in Richard O’Donnell.

Elliot Watt produced a fantastic delivery from a free-kick out wide which managed to find Paudie O’Connor, but the defender couldn’t flick his effort on target.

McAleny continued to run at his marker and he flew past the defender allowing himself to race into space on the edge of the box, but his effort was straight at the goalkeeper.

Just before the interval, Hilssner manufactured another corner onto the head of a teammate and it was captain Carl Piergianni, but he headed into the side netting at the back post.

Shortly into the second-half, the boys in blue nearly took the lead as Dylan Fage raced down the right-wing and crossed into the box before it took a deflection into the path of McAleny, but his effort was blocked at point-blank range by a defender.

Minutes later, Connor Woods dribbled inside from the left and tried his luck, but his curling effort went just past the far post as Mark Trueman and Conor Sellars’ side looked to open the scoring.

Clarke, who had an impressive afternoon, nearly scored a wonder goal for Latics just after the hour as the Citizens cleared a corner right into the path of the Arsenal loanee. He managed to chest it down before powerfully volleying goalwards, but it went just over the crossbar.

The Paraders countered straight after through Charles Vernam and it resulted in a one-two with Rowe, but his shot was weak and easily saved by Walker.

Substitute Andy Cook proved to be a handful for the Latics defence and nearly got an assist when he held the ball up before slotting through to Vernam, however, his low effort was just about kept out by the shot-stopper.

Dylan Bahamboula began to dribble with intent at the opposition and almost broke the deadlock twice. First of all, he flicked a low cross past his marker before dragging a low effort just past the far post. Then, he drilled a free-kick from 30-yards out over the wall towards the top corner by the goalkeeper managed to get across and keep it out.

In the last minute, the Bantams had one last attack as the experienced Gareth Evans beat Fage to a ball and dribbled into the box on the right, but from a tight angle, his strike went just past the post.

Bradford City XI – O’Donnell (GK) ©, A.O’Connor, P. O’Connor, Wood, Sutton, Watt, Crankshaw, Vernam (Scales 81’), Evans, Rowe (Cook 72’).

Subs – Hornby (GK), Donaldson, Stevens, Foulds, Cousin-Dawson, Cook.

Oldham Athletic XI – Walker (GK), Clarke, Piergianni ©, Whelan, Keillor-Dunn, Fage, Jameson, McAleny, Hilssner (Bahamboula 59’), Adams (Badan 72’), McCalmont.

Subs – Bilboe (GK), Grant, Ntambwe, Diarra, Da Silva.

Referee – Andy Haines


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