As we reflect on our memorable meetings with local rivals Bradford (Park Avenue), we begin with last season’s 1-0 victory at the Citadel.
Farsley Celtic picked up their first victory under new manager Neil Ross in what was a physical, hard-fought 1-0 derby day victory over Bradford Park Avenue.
The Celts took the lead through a Will Hayhurst penalty in added time at the end of the first half, and were able to maintain that advantage throughout the second half, despite the visitors’ best efforts.
The game started as a fairly even affair, as both sides sought to grab a foothold in the game. The first real chance came to James Hanson around 15 minutes in, who saw a strike well blocked by a Bradford defender.
Bradford saw themselves in threatening positions early on, but each time their players failed to create a significant opportunity to score, with many of their initial attacks ending with low, driven strikes straight into the arms of Farsley shot-stopper Tom Donaghy.
The next real threat came down Farsley’s right, as Jordan Richards was played in behind by Chris Atkinson, making his 200th appearance for the club. Richards crossed the ball towards Luke Parkin, but he turned just wide of the upright at the near post.
Moments later Kian Spence carved an opening, the loanee driving through the Bradford midfield with an incredible run, but could only strike his effort over the bar.
With half-time approaching Farsley were gifted an opportunity to take the lead. Jordan Richards whipped in a cross, and with Hanson waiting to pounce Mark Ross handled above his head.
Will Hayhurst made no mistake from the spot, sending Jonny Saltmer the wrong way to give the Celts the lead.
Farsley opened the second-half pushing for a second, Parkin seeing an effort well saved low down by Saltmer.
The closest Park Avenue came to levelling arrived just after the hour mark, Jordan Windass flashing an effort across the face of goal before Tom Donaghy made a strong save at his near post from Brad Dockerty.
The remainder of the second half saw the game slow in pace, as Farsley looked to retain possession and, more importantly, keep hold of the lead that their performance merited.
Park Avenue pressured the Farsley back-line, but they remained resilient to repel the visitors’ efforts and secure all three points.