Day 24 – 365 / January 24th 2015
Remember that date. I know that I will. Myself and 5,999 other Bantams certainly won’t forget it. Nor will the thousands more back in Yorkshire who couldn’t get tickets to see our boys travel to London to see our beloved club, Bradford City FC, take on Chelsea FC at Stamford Bridge.
The FA cup is, without doubt, the most special of all cup competitions in football. It’s special for reasons highlighted throughout its history by matches just like today’s. The giants with their international and world class players; players with World Cup winners medals, Champions League medals, Premiership trophies and goodness knows what other trinkets in their sideboard cabinets; players whose weekly wage packets are obscenely high, even for the most average of them; players who have been collected together at a cost in excess of several hundreds of million pounds.
Chelsea are a team currently found at the the summit of the Premier League, with a gap of five points over their closest rivals. Chelsea are a team that have won each of their home matches this season, whilst conceding a paltry three goals at home. Chelsea are free scoring. Chelsea are managed by the self-titled Special One”, Jose Mourinho. Chelsea are a team two leagues and forty plus places above my Bradford City.
Chelsea, also, are out of the FA Cup.
They took a 2-0 lead inside 30 or so minutes. “Oh dear”, we thought, “please don’t spank us silly and embarrass us.”
Moments before half time, John Stead fired in a left foot drive to give us fans hope, however sparse, for the the second forty five. Then, Filipe Morais swept in an equaliser and 6,000 claret and amber supporters went wild and our singing increased – we turned up the volume to eleven.
Chelsea pressed. City defended. Chelsea brought on more big guns and they pressed again. City broke forward on the attack. Jon Stead played the ball to Andy Halliday who swept it home. 2-3 to City. We went wild. Absolutely wild.
More attacking from Chelsea, more determined defending from our boys. The Rev ref added 7 minutes of additional time, honestly, SEVEN minutes.
City attacked again. And again. Then we scored a fourth. 2-4 Insane! And then, the red blew for full time and we went crazy. This is the players on the pitch after the final