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Bradford boss Mark Hughes wants players who can ‘thrive’ in front of big crowds

Bradford manager Mark Hughes (Simon Galloway/PA).
Bradford manager Mark Hughes (Simon Galloway/PA).

Bradford boss Mark Hughes wants players who can deliver in front of big crowds as he gears up for a busy summer of recruitment.

Hughes saw his side finish their campaign with a deserved 2-0 win over Carlisle, their third victory in a row.

Lee Angol, who this week signed a new one-year contract after a season blighted by injury, put the hosts ahead in the 13th minute, diverting Charles Vernam’s shot past goalkeeper Mark Howard, and Jamie Walker, on loan from Hearts, scored a second in the 70th minute.

The second goal came less than a minute after Carlisle had a penalty appeal turned down when Bradford right-back Luke Hendrie tangled with striker Kristian Dennis.

The match was watched by a crowd of 18,283 – the biggest attendance for a fourth tier match at Valley Parade – and Hughes said: “It was a fantastic crowd. From my experience the crowd has been fantastic since I came to the club.

“We want to be really strong with our home form next season. That will determine whether we can sustain a real promotion challenge.”

Bradford are comfortably the best supported club in League Two and Hughes said: “The crowd can inspire the players and we want players who can deal with big crowds and can thrive in the environment we have here. That’s the type of players we want.

“There is no better place to play, not just in League Two but League One or the Championship with the passion of the crowd and their commitment to the club.”

Hughes was pleased to end the season with a win, but added: “I thought we should have won by more. It was still a good performance and two good goals and I am very happy.”

Carlisle manager Paul Simpson said: “We had a opportunity to get a penalty which could have made it 1-1. I felt it was a poor decision by the referee, but that doesn’t explain why Bradford went to the other end and scored.

“I think Bradford are a good side and it was a good game of football.

“They caused us problems in the first half, but when we adjusted our midfield we did better. We created some good opportunities but we lacked quality in the final third.

“It didn’t feel like a dead rubber, but you don’t get a dead rubber when you play a Mark Hughes side or a Bradford City side. He is a top manager and Bradford City are lucky to have him.

“We did what we needed to do to stay up. Now we need to rebuild this football club and make them better.”

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