On this seasons 'Bradford City Specials' on Radio Leeds we have invited listeners to send us their 'Bradford City Top 5s'. As long as it's Bradford City related it could be anything! Back in October we were joined by Wayne Finter who sent us his Top 5 Target Men/'number nines' since 1993 (his first season) and here they are...
5 - Ashley Ward
A controversial entry to kick off the list but I am only including players from 1993 onwards. He was rumoured to be on 18k a week at City and many fans struggled to warm to him for that reason and for being part of gang signed in Geoffrey Richmond's 'six weeks of madness'. But from a purists point of view, although his goal output was low, he worked hard in a poor, unsettled City side. He also wrote off money owed to him during administration as he was a major creditor of the club's. I thought his hold up play per se was good so for that reason he kicks off my list.
4 - Dele Adebola
One of Colin Todd's best loan signings during difficult times for the club after the spells around administration. He was the perfect foil for Dean Windass, who was a goalscoring sensation on his return to the club. Dele was a big battering ram who went on to have several many good seasons after leaving City.
Note - So memorable was Dele Adebola that he was included in Bradford City's official club Calendar, 7 years after he'd left the club. In the picture used, he was wearing a Hull City kit too.
3 - Jon Stead
I'm still gutted he wasn't signed permanently in the summer as not only did he have terrific aerial presence, he was very good on the floor - an intelligent, mobile player that played a key role in our cup run last season. His hold up play set up Yeates at Chelsea and of course scored against Sunderland - an ex club where he'd struggled to settle and had been mocked for his lack of goals. Sweet.
2 - Lee Mills
Few really knew much about the big man - City's first million pound signing I believe - when Paul Jewell recruited him from Port Vale, but what a signing he turned out to be. Together with Robbie Blake he formed one of the most potent strike forces in the club's history but his time at Bradford wasn't without controversy as he was farmed out on loan once we hit the top flight - rumours of an alleged bust up with the manager could have possibly been the cause.
1 - James Hanson
Local lad plucked from local non-league circles and he's grown into one of the most feared target men outside of the Championship. I nearly had a heart attack at the back of the stand when he side-stepped Ron Vlaar to net our away goal at Villa Park. What a strike at Burton in the playoffs too. He's the first name on Phil Parkinson's teamsheet for me but divides opinion on the forums it seems.
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