More frustration for unfortunate ex-Portsmouth favourite Gareth Evans after latest Bradford blow

Gareth Evans’ frustrating start to Bradford life has continued following the dismissal of the manager who signed him.

Monday, 14th December 2020, 3:27 pm
Updated Monday, 14th December 2020, 5:03 pm
Gareth Evans has suffered a frustrating time since moving to Bradford, making just four appearances for the League Two strugglers. Picture: Joe Pepler

The popular midfielder departed Fratton Park in September for a second spell with the Bantams and the opportunity of regular football.

However, he has endured an unhappy return so far, hampered by injury, poor team results and now Stuart McCall’s exit with Bradford languishing above the League Two relegation zone on goal difference.

Evans himself has not played since November – while totalled just four outings overall.

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The 32-year-old had an outstanding availability record during his time at Fratton Park, totalling 218 appearances and being a mainstay for more than five seasons.

Yet he has been troubled by hamstring problems at Bradford and has still to complete a full 90 minutes.

Evans made his second debut as a 66th-minute substitute against Stevenage in September, two days following his Pompey departure.

Encouragingly, McCall’s side would claim a 2-1 success, their first in the league this term, making it a favourable instant impact for the new recruit.

However, the Bantams have since won just twice more in the league – while Evans has subsequently struggled for match minutes.

He was then handed his full debut against Harrogate, yet was withdrawn at half-time through injury in a 1-0 defeat.

The former Fleetwood player made his comeback five weeks later at Salford – and again was substituted at half-time. That fixture finished in a 3-0 defeat.

Next the midfielder was introduced at the break against Oldham in the FA Cup, but couldn’t prevent them slumping to a 2-1 home defeat.

He has since spent more than two weeks trying to recover from a hamstring injury, missing the last four matches, of which Bradford lost them all.

Yesterday, boss McCall and his assistant, ex-Pompey midfielder Kenny Black, paid the price and were sacked, with the club battling to remain in the Football League.

At least Evans is pencilled in to this week return, allowing the opportunity to provide inspiration and lift the strugglers up the table.

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