Yorkshire rivals take the spoils at the Keepmoat Stadium.
Doncaster Rovers 0
Bradford City 3 (MacKenzie 55, Clarke 64, McMahon 90+5)
Keepmoat Stadium, Doncaster
Friday 3rd April 2015
Sky Bet League One
Three second half goals ensured Bradford City took the spoils in the Good Friday Yorkshire derby at the Keepmoat Stadium, putting a huge dent in Doncaster Rovers’ playoff hopes.
Captain James Coppinger returned to the starting line-up, after missing the last three matches through injury, along with Jonson Clarke-Harris who scored the winner last time out against Coventry City.
Inside 18 minutes Doncaster had a penalty shout, Coppinger whipped in a great ball for Clarke-Harris at the back post and he appeared to be bundled over by Stephen Darby, however the referee waved away the protests.
Bradford were next to go close, Filipe Morais showed great skill to get to the by-line, before dinking the ball up to James Hanson, but the forward couldn’t direct his header on target.
Rovers were then presented with another great chance to take the lead, Richie Wellens and James Coppinger both fired the ball low across the face of goal, but there was nobody could get on the end of them.
Clarke-Harris then had a fine opportunity, Richie Wellens found him at the back post, but he couldn’t guide his header on target.
Just before the break Curtis Main so nearly gave Rovers the lead with a fabulous 25-yard strike, but it cannoned off the crossbar, Coppinger attempted the diving header, before Harry Forrester went down, but the flag was up for offside.
Half time: Doncaster Rovers 0-0 Bradford City
Bradford took the lead ten minutes into the second half, Morais whipped a fine ball to the back post towards Billy Clarke, Andy Butler cleared off the line and Gary MacKenzie prodded in scrappily as Rovers failed to deal with the lose ball.
Rovers almost hit back immediately, Dean Furman going close with a great strike from the edge of the box, but Ben Williams in the Bradford goal denied him.
Things then went from bad to worse for Rovers, on the counter attack City split the Doncaster defence open and James Hanson was away, he showed great strength to keep Luke McCullough at bay before unselfishly teeing up Clarke who fired the ball past Stephen Bywater to double the Bantams lead.
Liam Mandeville came off the bench to make his Doncaster Rovers debut and the lively youngster almost pulled Rovers a goal back, curling an effort from 20 yards, but he couldn’t get the better of Williams.
Bradford sealed the win in the fifth minute of added time, a slip by Reece Wabara allowed City substitute Tony McMahon to go through on goal before he coolly slotted past Bywater to put a hammer blow in Rovers’ playoff hunt.
Full Time: Doncaster Rovers 0-3 Bradford City
Team Lineups -
Rovers: Bywater, Furman, Clarke-Harris (Mandeville 84), Forrester (Bennett 68), Main, McCullough, Butler, Stevens, Wellens, Wabara, Coppinger (Tyson 68).
Subs not used: McCombe, Razak, Evina, Marosi.
Cautions: Furman 48, Butler 82.
Bradford: Williams, Darby, Meredith, Liddle, Hanson, Clarke (Stead 89), Knott (Dolan 90), Yeates (McMahon 68), MacKenzie, Morais, McArdle.
Subs not used: Zoko, Routis, Urwin, Webb-Foster.