Bradford City's Home League Return Didn't Quite Go To Plan : Bradford City Women vs Newcastle United Women Match Report

On Sunday we saw the return of FA Women's National League action at the Mitton Group Stadium in Eccleshill as Bradford City took on Newcastle United, with it being the first home league game for Bradford since September 2021 and Newcastle sitting second in the league at the start of the day on a good run of form it was always bound to be an interesting game and it certainly didn't disappoint, except for the final score for us Bradford City fans.  

The game started off with quite a few throw ins to each side as the ball spent a lot of time out on the wings however, nothing would really happen until the 6th minute when Newcastle took the lead, City 'keeper Richards came out to collect from a corner but was unable to clear the ball and the ball fell to the head of Newcastle's Robson who headed home from close range. Not long after the goal Bradford found themselves playing with 10 on the field as Katy Woodcock found herself in the sin bin, City held on though and kept up a strong performance even with a player down for 10 minutes. 

Throughout the whole first half Newcastle looked the stronger of the sides and kept on pushing for that second goal but they just couldn't find the back of the net. They had a lot of chances on goal however, City's Stuart was there to clear the Bradford lines a fair few times and when she wasn't 'keeper Richards was making some great saves to deny Newcastle a further lead. The teams went into half time with Newcastle winning 0-1 which in all honesty could have been a whole lot more but City were doing well to keep the score line looking reasonable at the break. 

Whilst the first half was a very one sided affair the second half started off well for Bradford City. Straight from kick off they went on the attack and gained a free kick in a dangerous area, the resulting goal for Knight saw Bradford draw level in the 46th minute. It really looked hopeful that Bradford could put up a fight and stay in the game but then the run of play changed once again. Around the 50th minute Newcastle really started to find their feet again and picked up their attacking pace once more and in the 53rd minute Newcastle took the lead once again, City 'keeper Richards originally got her hand to the ball to make the initial save however, the ball fell to the feet on Newcastle's Barker who slotted it home to gain the lead. 

The 56th minute saw Newcastle take the lead even further with an absolutely brilliant goal, which there was no stopping. The strike was riffled home from around 30 yards by Newcastle's Guy and there was absolutely no chance of it being saved especially with the bit of a swerve it had on whilst heading towards goal. City picked up pace a little bit after the 3rd goal and started linking some great passes together but in the 71st minute Barker picked up her second goal of the game and extended Newcastle's lead to 1-4 with a brilliant volley that made its way into the back of the net. It didn't take long for Barker to pick up her hat-trick as her shot in the 75th minute bounced over the line after hitting the bar. 

Even though Newcastle were 1-5 up they still kept pushing to increase their lead but some strong defending from City and some brilliant goalkeeping from Richards kept them at bay until the 90th minute where Newcastle ended the game with one last goal, this time from Ferguson who broke through defence and took the ball around Richards to end the game 1-6 to Newcastle. 

Looking back on the game it is safe to say Newcastle are a fantastic team who have the potential to remain top of the league for the remainder of the season as they are a very strong side and move the ball around the pitch well. At the same time though City had spells where they played well especially in the first half when they kept Newcastle's lead to just 0-1 when it could have easily been more, plus at times they moved the ball well around the pitch. Sometimes though they just looked defeated and like they had lost all hope even with the scoreline still in an achievable comeback range. There were some positive takeaways from the game though with Woodcock having a pretty good game in defence despite the scoreline along side Shepherd who also made plenty of crucial tackles throughout the 90 minutes. Richards also had a good game in goal making some brilliant saves to deny Newcastle plenty more goals and it is great seeing her confidence grow as the season progresses, she is definitely willing to go for the ball a lot more than at the start of the season. 

Our player of the match though definitely has to be Charlotte Stuart once again. She covered plenty of the pitch winning some important challenges in the middle of the field and she made some very important challenges in the defence to stop Newcastle in the first half and she continued stepping up and making important challenges even whilst catching a few knocks in the process. 

Newcastle definitely showed us how good of a side they are and fingers crossed Bradford can bounce back from the defeat in their next league game as they take on Durham Cestria away, fingers crossed we can walk away with some points from that game. 

In Conversation With Gareth Davis

Photo credit :

For our final Bradford City Women's interview of the week we got the chance to chat to Gareth Davis, who will be stepping into the dugout for his first home league game as part of the official first team coaching staff when Bradford City Women take on Newcastle United. Gareth's appointment to the first team is bound to be a very beneficial one for the team as there is no doubting his passion for the game and optimism for the future of the team. So here is how our conversation with Gareth went... 

EOTA : How did you originally get involved in the club? 

Gareth : It was very much by chance. When the pandemic started in 2020 due to COVID19 my football coaching stopped just like everything did for everyone.  Qasim asked if I would like to get involved with the women's team in January 2021 with the U23's and as I was not doing much, I thought i would be a good time to challenge myself . I had been involved in the women game before but family commitments took over. 

EOTA : You have recently stepped up to the 1st team coaching set up, how did that happen? 

Gareth : It was all thanks to Qasim stepping away to concentrate on things off field for Bradford City Women. Chris asked me if I would like to step up, it took me a week or so to decide as I had started to see changes with the U23's and would have like to seen it through to the end of the season. The U23's are in great hands though with Stephen, Paul and Manny .On the other hand opportunity like this don't come around every day and I don't want to look back and regret not taking it in years to come. 

EOTA : What are you looking forward to now you are part of the 1st team coaching set up? 

Gareth : The work I was doing with the U23s has got me this far so I am not going to change much I want to keep my standards high and passion for the game of football rubbing off on people. I want to see the U23's and 1st team putting in great performances week in week out making the club a force to be reckoned within the women's game.

EOTA : You have seen the team from various angles, from the stand, from the dugout and at training, how do you feel the team have progressed since the start of the season?

Gareth : It's been a very strange season for lots of different reasons . It feels to me the season has never really got going. As a player you want a run of games to get stuck into and I don't think we have had that yet. We have a a run of games coming up so I think the next 3/4 league game will be true reflection of the team, the girls have given their all in training since we came back after Christmas. We are not kidding ourselves 8 points is not a good return at this stage of the season. We know we have to give our all to the end of the season. What has gone we can't change but what's to come we can control. It's in our hands. 

EOTA :  Newcastle are currently sat 2nd in the league so it is bound to be a tough game for the team but how do you think they will fair on the day? 

Gareth : My job as a coach is to make sure the girls are prepared to deliver there best on the day mental and physically. 2nd in the league bottom of the league we prepare the same way. Nothing changes as to what is in front of us, getting points from games that we deserve.

EOTA :  We are entering the second half of the season and City have a few games in hand on those around them, do you think they have a good chance of climbing up the table? 

Gareth : As I said before runs of games are key. The stop start in the 1st half of the season has not helped. As a group we know we need to climb the table it's in our hands to do so if we want to do it enough it will happen . No one in this league will hand you points you have to earn them and that's what we will be doing, looking to work hard for every point available going forwards. 

EOTA : We are seeing a big push to get fans in the ground for this game vs Liverpool Feds and future games, if anyone is unsure about spending their Sunday afternoon watching the team what do you say to them?  

Gareth : The women's Euros are coming up in the summer and it it great to see football close up and capture the next generation of footballers and football supporters.

So there you go that is how our chat with Bradford City Women's Gareth Davis went, the team have definitely gained a great member of coaching staff with Gareth joining the first team and I think he can be really beneficial in helping the team progress in the future. We have spoke to Gareth plenty of times in the past thanks and it is safe to say his passion for the progress of the club is there and I think we are going to see that on the pitch too as his passion through coaching will hopefully rub off on to the players and results will still soon start improving. 

Don't forget there are plenty more interviews coming from the Bradford City Women's team & management but who else would you like to see us chat to in the 'In Conversation' series? Anyone from your supported club? Let us know as we would love to get more people & clubs involved in this series.

In Conversation With Caitlyn Douglas

Here we are again back with another installment of the In Conversation series and this time we got to chat with Bradford City Women's player Caitlyn Douglas. Caitlyn plays in the midfield and is one of the players that we have seen a lot of progress from since we first saw her play but as she only stepped up to first team football last season I think it is safe to say we are still yet to see the best from Caitlyn and as she gains more experience in the first team I think she is going to be a player to watch. So here is how our conversation with Caitlyn went... 

EOTA : We have definitely seen progress in the teams performances since the start of the
season compared to the previous seasons, what do you believe has been the
difference for this to happen?

Caitlyn : The start of the season is obviously not what we wanted I don’t believe anyone is
happy with the results or performances for the majority. We’ve been focused and
working hard in training and, for us, we have to trust the process and continue that
hard work between now and the end of the season.

EOTA : Newcastle are second in the table currently how do you rate your chances of
getting a result against them? 

Caitlyn : We go into every game confident in our own ability. We know Newcastle are going to
be a good side, but we’re ready to face up to the challenge as we’ve seen the levels
we can reach (especially in the Leeds game) so there is no reason why we can’t do
this again on Sunday. We’ve had a good week in training so we’re going into Sunday
with the right mind set and ready for what Newcastle will bring.

EOTA : Out of all the games you have played in what has been your favourite?

Caitlyn : Leeds at Valley parade has to be top! The whole atmosphere among the team and
staff felt amazing that night, the occasion was one to remember. Having the
opportunity to step up to first team football last season and having the chance to play
in such a big game only 12 months later, on such a big stage, is a feeling I will never

EOTA : What was it like to get the opportunity to play in a big game vs Leeds at Valley

Caitlyn : I think I’ve answered this question above, but it really meant so much to me. I’d had
a tough start to the season and had to fight for my place in the team, which I
continue to do, and to then play in front of almost 600 people under the lights at
Valley Parade, it felt amazing. I’ve played at Bramall Lane before but never in front of
such a big crowd, you really do feed off that energy on the pitch.

EOTA : It has been a while since the last home league game, what difference if any does it
make playing at home? 

Caitlyn : It’s always nice to play at home due with the crowd being behind us and familiar
faces being around. I’ve always found it easier to have a game day routine for home
games, so I enjoy that.

EOTA :  Women's football is on the rise in the UK and with England hosting the Euros later this
year we are bound to see a lot more interest in the game. For anyone of any age
wanting to start playing what advice would you give them? 

Caitlyn : Go for it! There’s nothing to lose, the women’s game is constantly growing, there are
many clubs out there at different levels for anyone so just do what you love and enjoy it

So there you go that is how our conversation with Bradford City Women's Caitlyn Douglas went. It has been great seeing how Caitlyn has progressed so far and I think the best is still to come from her so I am looking forward to seeing how the rest of the season goes for Caitlyn along with the rest of the team. 

Don't forget there are plenty more interviews coming from the Bradford City Women's team & management but who else would you like to see us chat to in the 'In Conversation' series? Anyone from your supported club? Let us know as we would love to get more people & clubs involved in this series.

Match Preview : Bradford City Women vs Newcastle United Women


It is the long awaited return of the FAWNL at the Mitton Group Stadium in Eccleshill as Bradford City Women finally have a league game at home. It has been a very long time since the last home league game which was moved to Valley Parade back in September 2021, as City took on Leeds United in the Yorkshire Derby and walked away 1-0 winners. With it being a while since they have been at home in the competition it is bound to be an exciting game especially with how the team have progressed lately and how well the visitors Newcastle United are doing in their season so far. 

The visitors Newcastle United Women are currently sitting second in the league table after winning 9 of their 11 games so far and going into this game they are just 2 points of 1st place Liverpool Feds, it is safe to say they are going to be giving it their all this weekend to edge even closer to that top spot. Having won their last 5 matches they are definitely a strong side in the league and the current run of form is definitely going to contribute to a very interesting game on Sunday. 

Bradford are currently sitting 10th in the league but with having only played 8 league games so far this season they have plenty of games in hand to try catch up to those teams around them. We have definitely seen the team progress over recent months and have put in some great performances in the County Cup but can they keep momentum moving into the league? When you look at their last 5 games you can see the progress that is being made with 2 wins out of five and 1 draw, the team are more than capable of getting the points out of the game it is just going to be a case of how much they want to fight for them against the second place side. 

With the games in hand on those teams around them it is vital that City take every chance they can to take home as many points as possible to make those games count and see themselves progress up the table and away from the relegation zone. Newcastle will be coming to Bradford full of confidence but can City cause an upset?

If you are local to Bradford this weekend why not head to the Mitton Group Stadium in Eccleshill to come watch was has the makings of being a very interesting game of football. We know we wouldn't want to spend our Sunday afternoon any other way.  

Kick off : 2pm 

Stadium : Mitton Group Stadium, Eccleshill United FC, Kingsway, Bradford, BD2 1PN.

Tickets : Adults £5, Concessions Free. 

In Conversation With Qasim Akhtar

Here we are back with another installment of the 'In Conversation' series and this time rather than chatting to a player we got to chat to Bradford City Women's chairman Qasim Akhtar. Qasim was working in a bit of a general manager role at the beginning of the season but has since stepped into the chairman role for the club. It was great to chat to someone who has seen the team grow on the pitch and then transitioned into a different role as he has seen different side of the club. So here is how our conversation with Qasim went... 

EOTA : How did you end up getting involved in the club?

Qas : I initially came in as the U9’s coach for the junior set up, back in 2016. After spending two seasons undertaking that role and supporting the running of the set-up, I stepped in as Head of Juniors when the junior set up transitioned across to the Community Foundation at the Club. At the start of 2021 calendar year, Bradford City Women merged with Bradford City FC Community Foundation and Bradford City Girls, resulting in the re-branding of the club to Bradford City AFC Women. I now sit as the Chairman for the club and still coach the U14’s side, who compete in the local boys league.

EOTA :We have seen progress since Chris Hames took charge, what is it like working alongside him? 

Qas : I’ve got a very good, open, and honest relationship with Chris. We speak almost on a daily basis, which is probably more than he’s used to with Chairmen he’s worked with in the past, but I’m keen to ensure he has everything he needs to support the progression of Bradford City AFC Women. We were a little short staffed in the coaching department at the start of the season, so Chris asked me to step in as a first team coach on an interim basis, which I really enjoyed. Working alongside him on the pitch has allowed me to gain a better understanding of where we are at as a club with first team matters on the field, and ultimately, I love coaching so working with the players was enjoyable. After Gaz steadied the U23’s ship, I was keen to move him up to the first team and progress Stephen from the U16’s into the 23’s lead coach role. 

EOTA : We are seeing a big push to get fans in the ground for this game vs Newcastle United and future games, if anyone is unsure about spending their Sunday afternoon watching the team what do you say to them? 

Qas : I’ve always been a fan of going out and watching live games. The women’s game in general is growing and with the Euro’s being hosted here this year, now is the time to get involved. Especially with game like this Sunday’s, against Newcastle United, the standard of football is very entertaining to watch. I’d encourage anyone who is wanting a football fix over the weekend to get across and watch the game.

EOTA : The last time City were at home in the league was the Leeds game, how much do you think being back home is going to benefit the team?

Qas : Playing at home is always nice, especially when we get a few fans through the gate. Playing our last home game at Valley Parade was fantastic and the atmosphere the crowd generated really did push us over the line against a top Leeds team. We’re working hard behind the scenes to increase our attendances and I’m hoping for a three-figure crowd from this Sunday onward. 

EOTA : We are entering the second half of the season with a lot of games still remaining on the schedule, what are you hoping from the team for the remainder of the season? 

Qas : It sounds very cliché, but it really is a game-by-game mentality. There’s no hiding our place in the league table, and we know what we need to do to put that right, but staying in this league and building a foundation for next season is the aim. We’ve got a decent number of games in hand on the teams around us, obviously we’ve got to win these, but we’re right in there to climb up the table. Performances have been and are improving; we speak a lot about trusting the process and that’s exactly where I’m at with it. 

EOTA : The club are still in the West Riding Cup and we saw them progress well in the FA cup, are you hoping to see more progress from them in cups next season, especially the FA cup where they could end up facing some big names or is the league going to be a big priority to climb further up the table? 

Qas : I’m a big believer in momentum in football, whether you’re winning games in the cup or the league, winning is a good habit to get into. Our FA Cup run came to a disappointing end after a very poor performance against Chorley, obviously I’d like to see us progress in the competition next season and hopefully get a big-name draw. I’m really pleased with our progress in the County Cup and our performance against Farsley Celtic Juniors on Sunday was a very professional one. We’ve got Leeds in the semi-final next month and I’m looking forward to that game, it will be a very good test to see how we are progressing. 

So there you go that was how our conversation with Bradford City Women's chairman Qasim Akhtar went, it is great with how involved Qasim has been in the role since joining his roles with the women's club, we have had plenty of chats with him in the past and his passion for improving the club is definitely there and I am looking forward to seeing how the club progresses with him as chairman. 

Don't forget there are plenty more interviews coming from the Bradford City Women's team & management but who else would you like to see us chat to in the 'In Conversation' series? Anyone from your supported club? Let us know as we would love to get more people & clubs involved in this series.

In Conversation With Charlotte Stuart

Once again we are back with another installment of the 'In Conversation' series and we have had the chance to ask Bradford City Women's player Charlotte Stuart a few question as the team build up to their first home league game in a long time. It has been a long time since we saw City in the league at Eccleshill although we have seen them at home for a few cup games in the meantime. For us Charlotte Stuart has been a standout player since we started watching the team, she always gives it her all and covers a whole lot of the pitch to help get City into some dangerous positions whilst also grabbing goals for herself in the process. So here is how our conversation with Charlotte went... 

EOTA : It has been a while since the last home league game, what difference if any does it make playing at home? 

Charlotte : Being at home certainly helps with match day routines and us knowing the pitch, and for our juniors being able to come and support. The home crowd always gives you that extra push!

EOTA : You have been a key feature in the squad this season grabbing a few goals for yourself in the process, how do you feel the season is going for the team?

Charlotte : The season has certainly had its ups and downs already and more of the downs that we would like, we certainly haven't being playing at our potential so that has been frustrating. 

EOTA : You have been at City for a while now and have worked with a fair few managers, what has it been like so far with Chris Hames in charge? 

Charlotte : I have a good relationship with Chris he's a really good guy. From the start he was keen to make the club as professional as possible and consistently looking to improve and rebuild to where we feel the team should be. 

EOTA : The team got the chance to play the big derby game vs Leeds at Valley Parade earlier this season, how did it feel playing in the same stadium as the men do? 

Charlotte : Yes it was nice to be back on the pitch, we usually have the privilege to play the last game of our season on the pitch but with the breaks due to COVID it's been a while since we have been on there. It certainly made it a good occasion and help us get the win!

EOTA : You have played in plenty of games over the years but what would you say has been your favourite? 

Charlotte : I would have to say when we first won the county cup in 2014 we had been close for a while and it was a big focus for us.

EOTA : Women's football is on the rise in the UK and with us hosting the Euros later this year we are bound to see a lot more interest in the game. For anyone of any age wanting to start playing what advice would you give them? 

Charlotte : There are so many opportunities for all ages to get involve so certainly contact your local club and they can point you in the right direction. For the youngsters I would say firstly enjoy your football and have a ball at your feet at every opportunity!!

So there you have it that was our conversation with Bradford City's Charlotte Stuart. I am really looking forward to seeing how Stuart can help City progress in the second half of this season as I believe she is going to be a key player in any progress the club do make. 

There are plenty more interviews coming from the Bradford City Women's team & management but who else would you like to see us chat to in the 'In Conversation' series? Anyone from your supported club? Let us know as we would love to get more people involved in this series.

Have We Seen Progress From Bradford City Women So Far This Season?


This season has seen Bradford City Women begin to make an impact on the pitch and start getting those points they deserve as well as have a good cup run which is great for us fans who have seen the team struggling in recent years. 

The 2018/2019 season saw Bradford City Women relegated into the FAWNL Division 1 North from the Northern premier Division after a season that saw them pick up 0 points and finish with a -128 goal difference. Maybe the drop down a league was just what they needed to be able to regroup however, that following season didn't really go to plan either with the pandemic taking hold during the 2019/20 season the league ended up voiding results and the season ended before the team could hit the ground running under new Manager Chris Hames. Hames took over towards the end of 2019 and his first game in the City dugout saw City narrowly defeated 1-0 by a fifth place Liverpool Feds side which already showed the progress they were making under his management and training style. It is a shame that season was cut short as I really do believe we could have seen the team come together and get the results they wanted if they had the consistency of regular games. Before Chris was appointed after every game you could see how defeated the team felt but since he has come in they seem to keep their heads up for much longer and fight to claw back a result which just goes to show the turn around he has created. 

I think if that season hadn't been cancelled we would have seen them climb the table but it just wasn't meant to be. I don't know what Chris had the team doing during the pandemic but when the 2020/21 season kicked off you could see the team looked more put together and like they were ready to give the season their all but once again that season was cut short thanks to the pandemic and the team only got to compete in 4 games, this time though they ended up with 3 draws and 1 loss which showed they were definitely stepping it up a gear it is just a shame we again didn't see a full season from the league as I think we could have ended up with a good run of results. 

Moving onto this season (2021/22) we seem to be back to a normal fixture list and the season is progressing nicely. As it stands Bradford are currently 10th in the league with 7 points however, so far they have only played 8 games so have quite a few games in hand on those teams around them, if they can capitalise on these games in hand they are bound to keep climbing the table to avoid relegation. With it being a while since City have played a league game it is going to be interesting to see how they fair up with the teams at their level once more but I believe that since the start of the season we have definitely seen them up their game and show us all what they are capable of, just take the game at Valley Parade vs Leeds for an example, we certainly went into that as the underdogs but came out as 1-0 winners after playing a very good game, more performances like that and we are bound to see City climbing the table and causing a few upsets along the way. 

With the amount of games left this season it is definitely going to be interesting to see how the remainder of the season progresses but I think with how things are going at the moment we are going to be in for an exciting few months although no doubt they could be a bit nerve-racking too as there are still a few tough opponents to face but I am sure we can put up a good fight against them all and prove that we deserve to be in that league. 

Since Hames came into the picture there has definitely been improvement and now lets just hope the consistency of games can create more progress and a good run of form so that we get to see the team pick up more points before the end of the season and get higher in the table like they deserve. 

Our Current Favourite Manchester United Players

This is normally a post that I like to write however, this time around it has been one I have been dreading writing up until now as Manchester United are nowhere near the standard they should be at although after Ole's departure we are seeing a bit more progress from the team and some players are suddenly starting to perform once again which is frustrating because why couldn't they just do this all along and we would be doing a lot better in the table and be in a much better position and not chasing our tails. It has actually been quite hard to pick favourite players this season thanks to the poor performances but there are a few players who have stood out to me personally and those are... 

The past few seasons I haven't really been a fan of De Gea however, he really seems to stepped up a bit this season I am not sure if that is due to the other 'keepers waiting in line or just due to him realising that the past few seasons weren't his best. He has pulled off some great saves lately and has been a key player for us this season in my eyes. It has been nice to see him step up lately and let's hope he continues to play as he is doing. 

Of course Ronaldo was going to be on this list, still to this day he is one of my all time favourite players and I am so glad he is back at the club. Even at the age he is at now he just doesn't seem to be slowing down and he is still putting in some fantastic performances. Ronaldo has saved Manchester United a fair few times this season and has clawed a few results back for them in crucial games. His ability to slot back into the Premier League has amazed me and I think he is just continuing to prove himself as the greatest in the world. 

I think an underrated player for a while now has been Mason Greenwood and as a young player I think he still has a lot to offer. Previous seasons haven't been great for him off the pitch and that carried on over to on the pitch performance in my eyes however, this season he seems to have stepped up a little bit for me and is starting to show the kind of player he is going to become. I think if he continues to be given a chance we are really going to see what Greenwood is capable of let's just hope things just keep going well for him.

So there you go it was definitely difficult to pick out the best of a bad bunch but let's hope with a new interim manager that the players start to perform as they are capable of and we finally see the club work its way back up the table. Things just haven't been good enough at the club in recent years but surely it is time for that to change now?