OLDHAM ATHLETIC 2, BRADFORD CITY 0
John Sheridan continues to provide belief that Oldham Athletic can pull off the great escape from relegation to the National League.
In the five matches since Sheridan became head coach, Latics are unbeaten having collected 11 points – that’s promotion form.
And the latest win against managerless Bradford City marked another important moment as it lifted Latics out of the League Two relegation places where they have been rooted for most of the season.
In the glory days under Joe Royle there was the ‘pinch me’ season but Latics are replicating that under Sheridan as they looked doomed until his return for a remarkable sixth stint as manager.
First-half goals from Hallam Hope and Davis Keillor-Dunn sealed victory in this Roses clash in which Lancashire came out on top.
Sheridan had two enforced changes to his side as Bradford arrived on a dismal run which had culminated in Derek Adams’ sacking.
Following the dramatic 3-3 draw Newport County, Hallam Hope and Jack Stobbs replaced the suspended Dylan Bahamboula and injured Junior Luamba.
After the dismissal Adams in midweek, the Citizens has Mark Trueman in temporary charge.
They began brightly as former Aston Villa striker Nathan Delfouneso headed over from Alex Gilliead’s cross, a glaring miss.
Latics were ahead in the 19th minute when Hope glanced home a header from Nicky Adams’ cross.
Keillor-Dunn made it four goals in three games for himself as he doubled the lead four minutes later, coolly heading past Alex Bass.
Andy Cook, a physical presence, barged his way through on goal, but shot straight at Rogers from an acute angle.
Following the introduction of Tom Elliott from the bench at the restart and became more direct to the big man.
The route one tactic saw a long ball lofted the ball into the box and Yann Songo’o flicked on the ball to Paudie O’Connor, but the captain’s overhead kick sailed over the crossbar.
The visitors were on top when O’Connor was needlessly dismissed in the 72nd minute following a tussle with Hope, who was shown a yellow card and being reduced to 10 men disrupted their flow.
Latics went in search of a third and nearly put Bradford out of sight when Stobbs headed wide from an Adams cross.
In the 82nd minute, Bradford thought that they had pulled a goal back as Elliott collided with goalkeeper Danny Rogers, and then, headed into the back of the net, however, referee Anthony Backhouse spoke to his assistant and the goal was disallowed.
Oldham Athletic: Rogers, Clarke, McGahey, Piergianni, Hart, Keillor-Dunn, Whelan, Missilou (Hunt 89), Adams, Stobbs (Vaughan 87), Hope (Obadeyi 79). Subs (unused): Leutwiler, Fage, Diarra, Couto.
Goals: Hope (19), Keillor-Dunn (23) for Oldham Athletic.
Attendance: 7,716 (1,985 visitors).