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Match Report: Bradford City 2-2 Bolton Wanderers

A game of two halves on Parky's return to Valley Parade

Madine heads in Wanderers' equaliser
BPI/Paul Currie

It was a true game of two halves upon Phil Parkinson’s return to Valley Parade on Saturday, as Bolton Wanderers had to come from 2-0 down to claim what could be a vital point against Bradford City.

Coming in to the game, Phil Parkinson made two changes from the team that started Tuesday's win over Rochdale, with Dean Moxey and Tom Thorpe replacing Andrew Taylor and Jay Spearing.

The first half was up there as one of Wanderers' worst performances this season.

Just ten minutes into the game, Bradford were ahead. Dean Moxey and Mark Beevers were unable to cope with the pace of Mark Marshall, who crossed the ball into the path of Charlie Wyke, who finished to put the Bantams one up.

Ben Alnwick should have saved it, as it bounced right under as he dived to save. However, it wouldn't be the goalkeepers worst moment of the half.

In the twentieth minute, Wanderers found themselves two down.

Once again, Bolton were caught out on the left side of defence, with Ben Alnwick forced to come far out of his net. With Alnwick left stranded, Nicky Law was on hand to loft the ball easily over Alnwick into the path of Wyke, who only had to prod the ball into an empty net.

Bolton did manage to muster up some chances in the first half. Adam Le Fondre forced a save out of Bradford goalie Colin Doyle, whilst Gary Madine should have pulled one back when teed up from three yards out.

Madine also headed over towards the end of the first half.

The game turned in Bolton's favour in the second half. In the 60th minute, Viv Solomon-Otabor and James Henry were brought on for Dean Moxey and Liam Trotter. With Filipe Morais moving to left wing back, Bolton looked a better threat and the move paid off just three minutes later.

James Henry's free kick was poked in off the post by David Wheater. Game on, 2-1.

At the other end, Mark Marshall was still proving to be a nuisance for Wanderers' defence. First, he drove a shot just wide, before tripping over his feet when through on goal.

Bradford were made to rue those missed chances the 75th minute. A short free kick was played to James Henry, whose outstanding cross was headed into the net by Gary Madine to level the game.

Just after the equaliser, Bradford almost took the lead. Luckily for Wanderers, Timothee Dieng's shot beat Alnwick but struck the post.

Viv Solomon-Otabor and Gary Madine both had chances to gift Wanderers all three points, whilst at the other end Charlie Wyke could have sealed a hat trick. Ultimately, the game would end 2-2. Certainly a great result given the poor performances in the first thirty minutes.

Wanderers travel to Sheffield United next weekend, hoping to close the gap between the leaders.