A Look at Bradford City Women's season

Well what a season that was, finally we have watched our first complete season for the Bradford City Women and it definitely hasn't disappointed. It was a bit of a nerve-wrecking one at times but at the end of the day it has also shown that going forward the club have got a lot of potential and have made a massive improvement since we first went to see them at the start of the 2019/20 season which ultimately ended up cancelled thanks to the pandemic. 

This season was Chris Hames' first full season in charge almost two years after taking the reigns at the club and it was finally his chance to show us all what he was capable of as a manager. Granted times were tough at stages during the season and results didn't always go in our favour even when we put in some great performances, but the players kept on playing and pushing to get a result which is something they didn't do when we first went to see them, back in 2019 they seemed to go a goal behind and just give up but now they push and have often managed to pull a few goals back due to this determination. This definitely goes to show the growth of the players under the management of Hames which was definitely needed to keep them in the league. 

The team put in some fantastic performances throughout the whole season pulling off some great results but the league was definitely a tough one this season with teams seeming to be on a level playing field which ultimately meant that even after some fantastic performances City were pulled into a relegation battle a few times throughout the season just due to the quality of those teams around them and honestly it was often very tense in the stands when results just didn't seem to fall our way but they a quick check on social media always seemed to show that those around us were having the same sort of luck. The final few weekends of games were spent with a lot of time on social media checking all the results around us as it was so close anyone could have ended up in that final relegation spot but luckily City won their final game whilst those around them didn't have the same luck and somehow with how those final results went City ended up jumping into a 7th place finish. If they had been consistent throughout the season though I really do believe we could have seen them finish even higher but referee decisions and a few lapses in judgement just meant some results ran away from them and towards the end of the season a few points were dropped.

The club had a very good run in the county cup too with them making the semi-finals where they were unfortunately beaten by local rivals Leeds United not long after holding them to a draw in the league game. The run was definitely a good one and everyone in the stands really did believe the team could have gone all the way but unfortunately after a tightly contested game Leeds proved just that little bit too strong for Bradford. The results in the build up to the semi final were great though and showed just how the team were improving throughout the season, even in the FA cup they challenged well but unfortunately fell to defeat in the second round, as for the FAWNL plate they showed potential but after a very tough game against Boldmere St Michaels (who ended up winning their league) City were unfortunately knocked out of the plate on penalties. I am really looking forward to seeing how the club progress through the cup competitions next season though as with the performances they were showing towards the end of the season they have the capability of going pretty far I believe. 

It was pretty special seeing the team play the West Yorkshire derby at Valley Parade during the season too as over 500 fans turned up to support the game which definitely didn't leave anyone in the stands disappointed. This was a great game to watch and it was great covering it on all our social media channels from the press box, it was certainly a special experience for us. The fact that City won this game too was just the icing on the cake and it gave the players a chance to show everyone what they were capable of in such a great stadium. 

As for the players this season they have all played really well putting in some fantastic performances with Sophie Hawkins picking up some great crucial goals, Maisie Norde putting in some great set pieces to create some brilliant goals for the team and Monika Stube really stepping up in the vice captain role whilst putting in some solid midfield performances however, if we had to pick a player of the season it is definitely between Katy Woodcock & Charlotte Stuart who have both been consistently brilliant over the course of the season grabbing some great goals and covering a lot of the pitch both attacking and defensively. Even with a lot of big knocks from the opposition Stuart managed to carry on the games and really show the opposing teams just what a threat she could be. Woodcock has shown exactly why she is captain too, sat in the stands you can hear her commanding the team and helping pick them up when they have gone a goal behind. 

This season has definitely been one of progression and I am really looking forward to seeing how the team builds in the off season and how they perform in the preseason games as I think if they can keep hold of a fair few players, build up a good bench as back ups for injuries etc they can really capitalise on this seasons progression and make some great progress up the league table and in the cups they compete in. 

What were your thoughts on Bradford City Women's season?

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