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BBC Five Live's Peter Slater
reports from Maine Road
 real 14k

Manchester City manager Joe Royle:
"Dicky deserves everything he gets"
 real 56k

Manchester City's Paul Dickov:
"It's been a fantastic week for me"
 real 56k

Bradford manager Chris Hutchings:
"We've just got to make sure we start sticking the ball in the back of the net"
 real 56k

Saturday, 14 October, 2000, 15:56 GMT 16:56 UK
Dickov inspires City to sink Bantams
Alfie Haaland
Haaland scores City's second
Manchester City 2-0 Bradford City

Two first half goals from Paul Dickov and Alfie Haaland were enough to give Manchester City victory over struggling Bradford City at Maine Road.

The Bantams came into the match sitting second bottom in the Premiership, and hopeful of getting something from the game against the inconsistent Manchester side.

Manchester City almost made the early breakthrough inside the opening five minutes when Dickov released Gary Tiatto down the left but his powerful shot was straight at Matt Clarke, who held it well.

Dickov was involved again after 14 minutes when he found himself in the clear after a powerful run by Mark Kennedy but his shot from 18 yards was blocked by Clarke, who spread himself well.

Tiatto then fired a dangerous cross to the back post that forced a stooping Stuart McCall to head behind for a corner, with Dickov lurking behind him.

Some hesitancy in the Blues defence allowed Dan Petrescu to hook over a cross that was just beyond Ashley Ward who had shaken off his marker.


I think the result was more important than the performance. We have played better and lost this season
  Joe Royle, Man City manager
The deadlock was finally broken after 30 minutes and predictably Dickov was involved in the action again.

Perfectly placed

Kennedy made space on the left at the edge of the box, and although his cross was slightly deflected, the Scottish international forward was perfectly placed to volley superbly into the corner of the net.

Three minutes later Kennedy sent over a corner from the right that Paulo Wanchope won in the air and Dickov's overhead kick hit the crossbar.

Alfie Haaland
Haaland's strike kills off Bradford's chances
The visitors almost hit back two minutes before the break when Benito Carbone slipped a timely pass to Peter Beagrie as he burst through the Blues defence, but as the space opened up the former Everton man dragged his shot wide of the target.

Bradford were made to rue the miss when Manchester City extended their lead almost on the half time whistle after McCall handled at the edge of the box.

Kennedy touched the free-kick to Haaland and his shot was deflected by McCall as he broke from the wall, and the ball flew past Clarke who was well beaten.

The Bantums squandered a golden opportunity to pull a goal back within the first minute of the second half, when Beagrie jinked past a defender and his centre was met by Ward who nodded past from five yards

Inspired

Bradford were inspired by the chance and pressed the Maine Road side in the following minutes as they attempted to grab a lifeline in the match.


We probably had about five decent headers from corners and crosses but their goalkeeper didn't have to make any worthwhile saves
  Chris Hutchings, Bradford manager
Carbone made himself some space on the left and his cross was met by Dean Windass who arrived with perfect timing only to head weakly past the target.

At the other end Tiatto was denied when he smashed a powerful shot from the edge of the box that goalkeeper Clarke did well to parry away.

The game became stretched in as the second half wore on with Bradford desperate to get something from the match and lift them away from the foot of the table.

But Manchester City never looked like surrendering their lead after the Windass chance, and in the end were comfortable winners.


Man City: Weaver, Whitley, Haaland, Wiekens, Prior, Howey, Ritchie, Wanchope, Dickov, Tiatto, Kennedy. Subs: Weah, Goater, Bishop, Horlock, Wright.

Bradford: Clarke, Nolan, McCall, Wetherall, Lawrence, Ward, Carbone, Beagrie, Windass, Atherton, Petrescu. Subs: Whalley, Sharpe, Davison, Bower, Grant.

Referee: B Knight (Orpington)

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