HUDDERSFIELD Town tumbled out of the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy on penalties as Bradford City scored another shoot-out success.
That’s four on the spin in this competition for the Bantams, who were victorious over Sheffield Wednesday by the same method in the first round.
Everyone knows penalties can prove both sweet and sour, but what left a slightly bitter taste was that Town created enough chances to have won comfortably inside 90 minutes.
But it needed equalisers by Tommy Miller, ironically from the spot, and skipper Peter Clarke to cancel out an Antony Kay own goal and an Andrew Davies header.
It was a miserable night for Kay, a half-time replacement for injured Liam Cooper, because he was booked for giving away the free-kick which led to his 54th-minute slip-up (he could only head Chris Mitchell’s delivery into his own net), then put his shoot-out spot kick over the bar.
Miller was the other Town player to miss, with Matt Duke saving his well-struck effort having been beaten by the former Sheffield Wednesday man in the 63rd minute after Clarke was fouled by Guy Branston.
Branston’s fellow centre-back Luke Oliver put Bradford back ahead within a minute, heading home from Robbie Threlfall’s corner.
But Clarke came to Town’s rescue in the 71st minute, when he volleyed home after Miller returned a partially cleared corner from busy Danny Ward, the former Bradford junior who drilled in shot after shot, but couldn’t find as way past Duke until the shoot-out.
Lee Novak and Alan Lee were the other home men to count from 12 yards while Mark Stewart, Kyel Reid, Threlfall and Nialle Rodney, with the winning kick, netted for Bradford after Town old boy Michael Flynn had put their first effort over.
Both bosses rung the changes for the first meeting of the West Yorkshire rivals in three years which brought City their first win over Town in six attempts.
There were eight new faces in the home starting side after Saturday’s 4-0 League I win at Brentford, including keeper Nick Colgan, making only his second appearance for the club.
Gary Naysmith returned at right-back, with Liam Cooper, who stood in there at Griffin Park after Calum Woods went off injured, switching to central defence.
Oscar Gobern, Anton Robinson, Ward, Donal McDermott and Novak were the others to come in.
For League II Bradford, seeking only a third win of the season in all competitions, there were six switches.