Bradford City 0, Crawley Town 2: Reds back on the winning trail after victory at Bantams

Crawley Town snapped their seven game winless run in League Two with a 2-0 away win at Bradford City this (Tuesday) evening.

Tuesday, 13th April 2021, 9:04 pm
Jordan Tunnicliffe opened the scoring for Crawley Town in their 2-0 win at Bradford City. Picture by Steve Robards

Jordan Tunnicliffe's deft header on 20 minutes gave the Reds a half-time lead.

The second half saw the Bantams bombard the Crawley goal, but Joe McNerney's bullet header with four minutes to go saw the Reds claim the three points and put an end to their unwanted run.

The victory sees Crawley move up to 13th in League Two ahead of their home game against top-of-the-table Cheltenham Town on Friday evening.

Manager John Yems made two changes from Saturday's goalless draw at Southend United.

Sam Matthews and Jack Powell came in for Jordan Maguire-Drew and Jake Hessenthaler respectively.

It was a fairly even contest in the opening stages of the game, with both teams looking to get on the ball.

Bradford keeper Richard O'Connell punched clear James Tilley's corner before Connor Wood blocked Tom Nichols' follow-up.

The Bantams then put the squeeze on Crawley from a corner of their own. Gareth Evans' delivery was kept alive by Paudie O'Connor but Anthony O'Connor skewed his shot wide.

But it was the visitors who took the lead. A superb lofted pass from Josh Wright was met by a towering header from Tunnicliffe who guided the ball into the back of the net.

And the Reds had the ball in the of the net ten minutes later but Ashley Nadesan's effort was ruled out for offside.

Bradford came to life in search of a first half equaliser. Evans saw his attempt blocked before Paudie O'Connor's follow-up was well held by Crawley keeper Glenn Morris.

Danny Rowe then almost netted a magnificent individual effort. The forward did well to pluck the ball out of the air and beat his man but his strike bent just wide of the post.

The Reds managed to forge one more chance before the break. Archie Davies bombed down the wing and crossed for Matthews but he could only head over.

The Bantams came roaring out of the traps as the second half began. Charles Vernam whipped in a venomous cross but Finn Cousin-Dawson headed wide.

But Crawley began turning up the heat on the host's goal. Matthews saw his attempt well blocked before Powell shot wide from the follow-up. Davies then cut in from the right and hit a curling effort over the crossbar.

Despite the ever-increasing Reds pressure, Bradford proceeded to put the Crawley defence under siege.

Morris was called upon to make a fantastic diving save to deny Vernam from close range.

Substitute Andy Cook then flashed an effort wide having been teed up by fellow replacement Billy Clarke.

Goalscorer Tunnicliffe made a inch-perfect sliding tackle to prevent Vernam from buccaneering into the box.

The Reds had their hearts in their mouth when, with just seven minutes to go, Clayton Donaldson rattled the post with a cracking half-volley.

But McNerney headed home a Powell free-kick with minutes left on the clock to wrap up the three points for Crawley Town.