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Friday, 21 April, 2000, 16:59 GMT 17:59 UK
Bradford in eight-goal thriller
Branko Strupar
Strupar steps up to score the second of the match
Bradford 4-4 Derby

Bradford City went into this match knowing only a victory would keep their Premiership survival hopes alive.

Jim Smith's men, although not in such dire straits, were aware a win would take the immediate pressure off them in the battle to avoid relegation.

Seven goals in the opening 44 minutes, the first two from Derby, and a first-half hat-trick for Bradford's Dean Windass set the tone for an action-packed, incident-laden match.

But heartbreak for Bradford came when Derby scored the only goal of the second-half - which gave them a share of the points and may have consigned Bradford to the First Division next season.

Match facts
23 secs - Delap opens the scoring
6 mins - Strupar makes it two for Derby
11 mins - Windass scores Bradford's first
18 mins - Windass levels the score
27 mins - Beagrie penalty puts Bradford ahead
36 mins - Burley penalty brings Derby back in it
44 mins - Windass completes his hat-trick
52 mins - Burley penalty gives Derby parity

Paul Jewell's men suffered a hammer blow when a lively Derby side scored from the kick-off with just 23 seconds on the watch.

Powell took the ball down the left, his shot rebounded off the Bradford keeper and was squared by Malcolm Christie for Rory Delap to score.

Within six minutes the Bantams found themselves two-nil down after Branko Strupar scored from a free kick on the edge of the area.

Bradford could have been forgiven for allowing their heads to drop, but in the manner which has characterised their commitment to the Premiership this season, they refused to accept defeat so easily.

Their confidence was rewarded when Dean Windass brought his side back in it on 11 minutes after neatly bringing the ball down before squeezing a super half-volley between Derby keeper Mart Poom and his left-hand post.

And on 18 minutes a defensive error from Elliott allowed Dean Windass to strike a thunderbolt of a shot from 35 yards out which skidded along the ground and raced into the back of the net leaving Poom stunned.

Dean Windass
Bradford's Dean Windass scored a first-half hat-trick
The match descended into controversy just before the half-hour when referee Alan Wilkie blew for a foul seconds before Bradford put the ball in the back of the Derby net for the third time with a beautifully-worked free kick.

After consulting his linesman, Wilkie stuck by his original decision to send Delap off for a foul and award a penalty to Bradford - which to the satisfaction of the crowd was converted by Peter Beagrie.

Despite being reduced to ten men, Derby continued to threaten and Christie felt hard done by when he failed to get any reward after claiming he was tripped in the area.

It mattered little however - he was hacked down in the box by Ashley Westwood on 36 minutes and Craig Burley scored confidently from the spot.

As the number of goals suggested, both defences were lacking considerably in cohesiveness making the match something of a free-for-all.

After Christie had gone down for the third time, his luck ran out and he was shown the yellow card for his exertions.

Less frantic

Both teams may have been looking forward to half-time and the chance to catch their breath, but before they could make their way down the tunnel, Dean Windass completed his hat-trick with another great goal.

The second-half started at a less frantic pace but Alan Wilkie was again forced to act when Dreyer handled in the area and Craig Burley stepped up to score his second penalty of the match on 52 minutes.

After Derby introduced Georgi Kinkladze, Bradford matched their attacking intentions and swapped defender Westwood, for former Derby striker Dean Saunders.

But, the accuracy evident in the first-half was absent in the second and despite chances at either end, Derby were only given the chance to break the deadlock when Wilkie awarded his third penalty of the match after Powell appeared to have been brought down in the box.

Craig Burley however, was unable to make it a spot-kick hat-trick and justice may have been done.


Bradford: Clarke, McCall, Wetherall, Westwood, Blake, Beagrie, O'Brien, Windass, Halle, Dreyer, Jacobs. Subs: Todd, Sharpe, Rankin, Saunders, Davison.

Derby: Poom, Carbonari, Powell, Dorigo, Johnson, Delap, Christie, Laursen, Elliott, Burley, Strupar. Subs: Oakes, Schnoor, Jackson, Kinkladze, Riggott.

Referee: A Wilkie (Chester le Street)

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