Football: Zimbabwe poised for series winBlake lifts Bradford
Sunday 20 December 1998
The Bantams' sixth success in seven games was set up by Robbie Blake's ninth goal of the season, but it was all they had to show for their first- half domination. Five minutes into the second half Blake sent in Lee Mill for a left-foot drive to secure the win over a lacklustre Wolves, who pulled one back through Robbie Keane.
With the chance to go second if they won at Grimsby Town, Watford were found wanting when goals by Dave Smith and Paul Groves gave the Mariners a 2-1 win and ended the Hornets' 10-game unbeaten run.
There was precious little seasonal cheer for Oxford United and Portsmouth, the two financially troubled First Division clubs whose very existence is in doubt. Pompey, who last week lost a leading scorer (John Aloisi, sold to Coventry City) and chairman (Martin Gregory, resigned following death threats), lost the match at Bolton Wanderers, 3-1, despite the best possible start when Sammy Igoe scored after only 28 seconds, flicking in Jeff Peron's left-wing cross.
It was all Bolton pressure thereafter but stout defending kept Portsmouth's lead intact until half-time. Goals by Bob Taylor, Per Frandsen and Dean Holdsworth in the final 20 minutes made Wanderers' points.
Luckless Oxford lost 2-0 at Stockport County and had their defender Paul Gilchrist carried off with a broken arm. Two Iwan Roberts headers helped Norwich City beat Bristol City 2-1 to go fifth
At Oakwell, Swindon Town beat Barnsley in the first 28 minutes, by which time they were 3-0 up. It finished 3-1. "Our game plan was to defend deep and hit them on the break," Jimmy Quinn, the Robins' manager, revealed, "and I thought we thoroughly deserved the win."
His opposite number, John Hendrie, offered a different analysis. "Our defending was awful and two of their goals were blatantly offside. It was a kick in the teeth to lose today, a very poor performance and I simply won't stand for that."
Bury have still not won away from home this season. Port Vale, who had lost seven of their eight previous games, were the latest to expose the Shakers' travel sickness but needed a late Simon Barker penalty to do so.
In the Second Division, Fulham won 1-0 at Preston to go top. Chris Coleman's goal four minutes from the end clinched the Cottagers' victory.
Limping along goalless for 55 minutes against the bottom club Dunfermline, the Scottish champions, Celtic, scored five in 17 minutes and won 5-0.
Even wilder feats at Belle Vue where the Conference strugglers Doncaster Rovers were 3-0 down to Dover - Joff Vansittart scoring a hat-trick - by the 27th minute, were level by the 75th, trailed again four minutes later but scored twice in the final four minutes to record a breathless 5-4 win.
Latest in Sport
- 1 Amy Winehouse statue unveiled in Camden
- 2 Lego breaks out of the toy box and heads for the gallery
- 5 A bottle of wine a day is not bad for you and abstaining is worse than drinking, scientist claims
George Galloway on Scottish independence: The political class is doing what Hitler couldn’t – destroying Britain
Daniele Watts: Django Unchained actress detained in Los Angeles after being mistaken for a prostitute
Scottish independence: Nationalist leader Jim Sillars threatens pro-union companies with 'day of reckoning' after independence
Scottish independence: Yes campaign feels the heat as Alex Salmond's NHS claims come under furious attack
Scottish independence: Britain faces 'constitutional crisis' at next election
£23m Birmingham cycle scheme is attacked by Tory councillor for not catering to the elderly
£50 - £65 per day: Randstad Education Leeds: We are looking for flexible and i...
£50 - £65 per annum: Randstad Education Leeds: We are looking for flexible and...
£130 - £160 per day: Randstad Education Leeds: Qualified KS2 Supply Teacher r...
£130 - £160 per day: Randstad Education Leeds: Qualified KS1 Teacher required,...