By Jason McKeown
Hours before the big League Two kick off, Bradford City manager Phil Parkinson has announced two more signings to bolster the squad. Former West Ham United winger Zavon Hines and defender Carl McHugh have signed one-year deals with the club after impressing during pre-season.
23-year-old Hines burst onto the Upton Park scene in 2007, but a succession of bad injuries halted his progress and he was released in 2011 when the Hammers were relegated from the Premier League. Hines signed for Burnley for around £250k, but failed to make an impact and ended last season on loan at Bournemouth.
Hines’ arrival has been warmly backed by former Hammers teammate Kyel Reid, and the prospect of City lining up with two out-and-out wingers, during home games at least, is an exciting one.
Irish left back McHugh, 19, was released by Parkinson’s former club Reading in the summer after spending last season on loan at Dundalk (making 16 appearances) and has also had a short spell at Swindon Supermarine. He will add further strength in depth to a Bantams backline which looks very strong, though he may find first team opportunities difficult to come by.
In many ways McHugh is the kind of development player City were recruiting last summer and quickly discarded; and hopefully he will be treated better than Andrew Burns, for example, who this week signed for Dagenham.