PROUD Danny Greaves has called on his Bradford Town troops to put their FA Vase exit behind them swiftly when they return to Toolstation League Premier Division duty on Saturday.

The Bobcats’ hopes of reaching the last eight of the national competition were ended when they went down 2-0 away to bookies’ favourites Marske United in the fifth round last weekend.

Danny Earl struck twice to seal Bradford’s fate in North Yorkshire, opening the scoring on 27 minutes before doubling his tally at the start of the second half, and Greaves had no complaints about the result.

“It was a tough game,” said the Bradford boss. “Obviously it’s disappointing to go out of the competition but we went out to the better side on the day. They were strong, very well organised and ultimately deserved to win.”

Bradford had overcome Newport (IW) with 10 men in the previous round, with Greaves donning the gloves after Charlie Phillips was sent off. The manager again deputised between the posts while his regular number one served his ban during Saturday’s clash.

“At the end of the day, I think 600 clubs entered the competition at the start and we got to the last 16,” said Greaves.

“We’ve equalled the club record but the quarter-finals were a bridge too far. If you’re going to go on and reach the latter stages then you need to have favourable draws – some home draws – and we’ve had a number of away ones involving long journeys to difficult places.

“You do need a bit of luck on that front, but if you’re going to win it then you also need to beat these sides and we weren’t good enough on the day.”

Bradford were backed by a healthy number of supporters in a crowd of 383 and Greaves hailed their commitment in making the 10-hour round trip to Redcar and back.

He said: “I think we had close to 100 fans, who travelled 300 miles to the other end of the country.

“Even after the game, obviously there was disappointment, but a large portion of our fans took over the bar and were still there at 7pm singing and chanting. They had a really good weekend and it’s something we can all remember, learn from the experiences and take that into our league campaign.”

Bradford, who remain firmly in the Premier Division promotion hunt, play their first league match of 2018 when Bridport visit Trowbridge Road tomorrow.

“We’ve only lost two league games so far and if we replicate that in the second half of the season then we won’t be too far away,” said Greaves. “It’s really important that we bounce back straight away and don’t suffer from an FA Vase hangover.”