Bradford City 0 Cardiff City 1

Last updated : 17 January 2004 By Footymad Previewer

Cardiff City winger Richard Langley grabbed the vital winner as the ten-man Bluebirds boosted their play-off hopes with a fine 1-0 win at Bradford City.

The Jamaican international followed up Rob Earnshaw's penalty and got his reward when the ball rebounded off the Bradford keeper's legs.

Langley headed home and Lennie Lawrence's men held their nerve to register a much-needed away win.

A scrappy contest looked to have swung Bradford's way when Cardiff full-back Gary Croft was red-carded for a scything challenge on Danny Cadamarteri just after the hour but it was the Bluebirds who responded best.

City keeper Alan Combe produced a superb double block to deny Earnshaw and strike partner Peter Thorne but his luck was out three minutes later when referee Colin Webster pointed to the spot.

Bradford full-back Simon Francis was the guilty party as his mistimed challenge sent Tony Vidmar sprawling in the box and although Earnshaw saw his tame penalty blocked by Combe, Langley was on hand to nod in the rebound.

A game of few clear-cut chances sparked into life and Cardiff keeper Martyn Margetson did well to push away a goalbound flick from Andy Gray.

After two successive league wins, the struggling Bantams were forced to make changes because of injuries and suspension and although they kept a tight rein on the Cardiff front-men they failed to test Margetson in a disappointing opening half.

With Bluebirds skipper Graham Kavanagh driving his men forward, Thorne hit the side-netting from an acute angle and Paul Parry wasted a good opening with a poor strike.

The visitors made a bright start after the interval and Bradford centre-half Jason Gavin had to head clear after Combe had blocked at the feet of Thorne.

Kavanagh then sparked another promising attack but Thorne's well-struck half-volley flew just wide of Combe's goal.

City midfielder Nicky Summerbee flashed a drive wide of the mark but after Croft was given his marching orders the home side paid the price for failing to make their man advantage tell.