My Favourite Shirt - Part Six
Part Six of 'My Favourite Shirt' has Bradford City fan, Brian, answering questions about his favourite shirt as well as other questions about his beloved Bantams.
Photos of Brian's 1987/88 Bradford City Home Shirt
What is your favourite shirt? 1987-88 was the first season I bought my first season ticket for £60 I was 17 years old. I just started work and was able to afford a replica shirt too. I remember being so excited as I tried it on and thinking I truly belong to Bradford City AFC.
The season became a rollercoaster of emotion and is fondly remembered as the nearly season.
Bradford council were the shirt sponsors promoting the city, add this to admiral's brilliant design and the Bradford boar club badge. It will live long in the memory of a great season.
Are there any happy or bad memories that come back to you when you see or think about this shirt? We got to the FA Cup fifth round losing 3-0 away to Portsmouth. We also reached the quarter finals of the Littlewoods Cup losing 2-0 to Luton Town who were in the top division at the time. We also had a semi-final in the Full Members Cup knocking out three top flight clubs on the way. A season of Cup football is thrilling.
The worst memories are losing the last two games of the season to Aston Villa and Ipswich Town which placed us fourth and into the play offs. A win in either game would of seen us promoted to the First Division now known as the Premier League. In the play offs we played Middlesbrough winning the first leg 2-1 only to go and lose 2-0 at Ayresome Park after extra time. It was gut wrenching and that's when I came to the philosophy to appreciate and enjoy the good times.
Any games that stand out in your memory when you see or think about this shirt? We played some great football that season and if we went a goal down we always had the strength and character to get a result.
We beat Huddersfield Town 2-1 away in a West Yorkshire Derby. Thrashed Oldham Athletic 5-3 at home and drew 2-2 with Manchester City at Maine Road. What stands out the most is not one game was a boring, excitement all season.
Who was the best player who wore this shirt in your opinion? Easy, the club legend Stuart McCall who came through our youth ranks and played six seasons for us before transferring to Everton for approximately £1,000,000.
He played a massive role in winning our last Championship the 1984-85 Third Division title. Sadly, that was overshadowed by the Bradford City fire on the last game of the season.
Stuart came back to the club in 1998 and captained the team that achieved promotion to the Premier League finishing second to Sunderland. He is a true leader of the game and a Bradford City icon.
And the worst? I don't feel comfortable saying the worst player, unfortunate is a better description. Steve O'Shaughnessy was a Welsh apprentice at Leeds United before moving to Valley Parade. He only made one league appearance of the bench that season and never made it at Bradford City.
What was the first Bantams game you went to? My first game was on a freezing Wednesday night 2nd April 1986 against Fulham we lost 3-1 the result was irrelevant, I was there at last. Mum and Dad were never comfortable with me going to games and had to wait until I was 15.
The game was played at Odsal, the home of Bradford Northern, now Bradford Bulls. Our stadium Valley Parade was being rebuilt after the fire back in May 1985. We played our home games at Elland Road, Huddersfield Town's Leeds Road and Odsal. So proud we stayed up that season when we never played at our beloved Valley Parade.
How have Bradford City done this season and how do you see the remainder of the season going? Gary Bowyer is our fourth permanent manager this season and we are languishing at the bottom of League One. I resigned myself to relegation back in January. Long term I think Gary will be good for the club, he did well with Blackpool in League Two.
The whole club changed when Edin Rahic came in two seasons ago as joint chairman with Stefan Rupp. Edin’s mismanagement and people skills was his downfall and fan power finally removed him from the club in January. Stefan is now the soul owner of Bradford City.
The club was one result away of being in the Championship losing narrowly 1-0 to Millwall in the Play Off final. The following season Stuart McCall was sacked half way through by Edin even though the team were never out of the top six. It's been downhill ever since.
We lost nearly 5,000 supporters who stop going as a protest until Edin went.
This season cannot finish fast enough and then we can look to the future and start to rebuild. Maybe next season shirt will become a classic Bradford City shirt.
Your best 1-11 from your time supporting the club?
1. Mark Schwarzer
2. Stephen Darby
3. David Wetherall
4. Stuart McCall
5. Dean Richards
6. Wayne Jacobs
7. John Hendrie
8. Peter Beagrie
9. Bobby Campbell
10. Robbie Blake
11. Gary Jones
Manager: Phil Parkinson
Interested in telling the world about your favourite shirt? Email firstname.lastname@example.org and you will be sent the questions and asked to upload an image of you wearing or holding the shirt in your reply. You don't have that shirt? Not to worry! A pictutre of the shirt will suffice.
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