Substitute Macken's debut goal caps City's latest win

Bradford City 0 Manchester City 2
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The Independent Online

Darren Huckerby's 18th goal of the season and a Jon Macken debut strike sent Manchester City back to the top of the First Division and shattered Bradford's fragile confidence at Valley Parade last night. City are heading for an instant return to the Premiership after leapfrogging their title rivals Wolves with their third victory in six days.

Bradford improved after recent poor displays, but City are irrepressible, with no sign of their momentum slowing as they march towards the top flight. The only remarkable aspect of this latest success was that they scored only twice, taking their tally to 102 for the campaign.

The home goalkeeper Alan Combe, on loan until the end of the season from Dundee United, could do little about the 44th minute opener as he was beaten by a cool finish from Huckerby following a delightful through ball from Ali Benarbia.

Combe was superb after the break, producing three fine saves to deny Huckerby twice and Shaun Goater once as the opportunities went begging, particularly after Bradford lost their defensive linchpin, Andy Myers, to injury shortly before the visitors went in front.

Huckerby also struck the post when it looked easier to score just after the hour, while Goater found the sidenetting after rounding Combe beforeMacken had the final say when he netted a rebound after Combe had been unable to hold on to a Danny Tiatto drive.

Bradford City: Combe; Halle, Jacobs, Myers (Tod, 42), Grayson (Juanjo, 79), Lawrence (Jorgensen, 79), Whalley, McCall, Sharpe, Cadamarteri, Jess. Substitutes not used: Grant, Worsnop.

Manchester City: Nash; Dunne, Wiekens, Pearce, Wright-Phillips, Jensen, Benarbia, Horlock, Tiatto, Huckerby, Goater (Macken, 80). Substitutes not used: Murphy, Jihai, Ritchie, Mettomo.

Referee: P Dowd (Stoke-on-Trent).

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