Following their dismal relegation from League One during the previous campaign, things do seem to slowly be looking up for Bradford City this season.
With eight wins and three draws from their opening 14 league of the season, Gary Bowyer’s side currently sit second in the fourth tier standings, meaning they look to be in with a strong chance of a quick return to League One next season.
It seems as though one man who could be key to their hopes of maintaining that all the way until next May, is someone who already has League One experience under his belt in the form of Harry Pritchard.
The midfielder joined the Bantams late in the summer transfer window, having helped Blackpool to a tenth place finish in League One last season, and he already appears to be having a significant impact in Yorkshire.
So just how has Pritchard settled in at Valley Parade? Also, how important could he be to Bradford’s hopes of promotion this season?
Here, we put the spotlight on the 26-year-old’s performances in League Two since arriving at Bradford to find out.
Having featured in every league game for Bradford since joining the club, it is clear how highly he is rated by Bantams boss Gary Bowyer – which is perhaps not surprising given he also signed him for Blackpool in the summer of 2018 – and the stats show that that trust is well-founded.
With Pritchard already finding the net twice in the league for Bradford, in wins over Carlisle and then Crawley this weekend, it seems as though the midfielder is already making a significant impact in helping his new club accumulate the points they need for a swift return to the third-tier.
Indeed, with an offensive duel success rate of over 40%, Pritchard is evidently proving a handful for League Two defenders, and the fact that even as a midfielder he is averaging more than two touches in the opposition box per game, highlights the attacking intent he is bringing to this Bradford side.
Interestingly however, it isn’t just the chances that Pritchard is creating and taking for himself that are proving an asset for Bradford.
Will Bradford City win promotion this season?
With an average of over two shot assists per game, Pritchard hasn’t taken long since arriving at the club to find his range when it comes to making sure his attacking teammates have an ample supply of chances, and it is perhaps no surprise therefore that he has already provided three assists in his nine league appearances, and his ability to continue to do that may be just as important to Bradford’s cause as the goals he is scoring himself.
Yet for all the work he is doing in attack, it is clear that Pritchard has not forgotten about his defensive duties, and a success rate of over 60% in duels in that area of the park shows that Pritchard will make the necessary contributions that Bradford need him to all over the pitch.
Of course, it will take more than just Pritchard to lift Bradford out of League Two this season, but having a player who can make the sort of instant impact at Valley Parade that he has already done, will certainly help.