League One side Bradford City have parted company with manager Stuart McCall after they suffered a sharp drop-off in form during 2018. The Bantams still lie in sixth place in the League One table, but have gone on a shocking run of form since they were beaten 2-0 by Yeovil Town in the FA Cup on January 6th. Six straight defeats have meant that they are now in danger of dropping out of the play-off slots, having held an eight point buffer on New Year's Day.
McCall's sacking is a little curious given that his record of 77 games saw his side clock up 35 wins, 22 draws, 20 defeats, giving him a win ratio of 45%, whilst last season he had taken his team to the League One Play-Off Final. However, it seems the wheels have come off badly since early January, and from the point of view of Bantams fans, they are questioning what happened at Huish Park, with many giving the view that their team hasn't been the same since that day.
Various Bradford fans on Twitter today have centred on that weekend in Somerset, and a belief that something must have happened to upset their team that badly. A selection of tweets reads as follows:
"After all that's gone on now, anyone going to tell us what actually happened down at Yeovil? Absolute turmoil every since."
"Stuart hung out to dry by the owners. Terrible summer recruitment, a run like this was always going to happen with that squad. And whatever happened at Yeovil isn't down to him. You sense they've been looking for an excuse all season."
"Do we find out what happened at Yeovil now?"
(To a Bradford local journalist) "Simon, put your stat book down and find out what happened at Yeovil."
"Something seemed to go wrong when Hendrie left the night before Yeovil, and it never got back on track, for whatever reason."
"Heard a few rumours it's never been right since Yeovil! No smoke without fire IMO. Would love to know what went on that night."
"It's clear that things have not been right behind the scenes for a few weeks. Morale has nosedived since the Yeovil game. Something triggered it but we’re not getting the full story. We need to be told, we are the supporters who pay our money to go every week."
As one poster hinted above, it may be a touch simplistic to suggest one FA Cup game could send a side off the rails that badly. Defender Luke Hendrie had been on loan at Valley Parade from Burnley during the first half of the 2017-18 season, playing in 18 matches. However, he was recalled a day or two before their trip to South Somerset, forcing the Bantams to name a makeshift defence. A few days after the FA Cup match, Hendrie was sold to Bradford's promotion rivals Shrewsbury Town, and the Yorkshire side have lost every game since.
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