The Exciting Macc Lads

It hit home at ten. The Macc Lads will be coming to Valley Parade for Stuart McCall’s first game in charge of City. Macclesfield Town. No name to conjure with but the reality of City’s situation and a sobering thought for those still remembering the day in August 1999 when City wandered into the meliu of the Premiership.

Macclesfield at home is a respectable first game for McCall and shows the scope of his task. They will come to Valley Parade looking to start the season well – who doesn’t – and make it tough for the Bantams to get anything, a microcosm of the season for the new boss who is promising promotion in his first season. Trip to Shrewsbury follows that. City go to the seaside for a first league game with Morecambe on the 13 October – too late for summer sun – and Boxing Day sends us the somber thought of Lincoln City’s first league game at Valley Parade since 11th of May, 1985.

We close on the 3rd of May at Wycombe having rounded up at home the week before when Milton Keynes Dons visit VP.

What of McCall’s promotion hopes? They are realistic – last season’s top four in League Two were the bottom four of League One from the season before – and the three promotion spots allows for breathing room.

One worries that the Bantams squad needs building but Mark Lawn has made sure that resources are there to build with. The atmosphere problem at Valley Parade has been combated with the innovations over season tickets and for the first time since Barnsley opened the season at VP in 2001 there is reason for optimism for progress rather than the relief of continued existence.

In this way Macclesfield is as exciting, as joyous, as worth looking forward to as Middlesbrough was.