McDermott fears Bulls threat

  • Last Updated: May 2 2013, 15:19 BST

Leeds coach Brian McDermott is taking no notice of Bradford's recent decline in form ahead of Friday's Super League derby at the Provident Stadium.

Ryan Bailey: Returning for Leeds after a four-match ban.
Ryan Bailey: Returning for Leeds after a four-match ban.

While McDermott's men go into the game on the back of a seven-match unbeaten run, his old club are reeling from heavy back-to-back defeats at the hands of Wigan and Warrington.

However, the Bulls remain handily placed in the top eight and demonstrated with last year's Good Friday win at Odsal, as well as an admirable draw at Headingley earlier this year, that they relish clashes with their biggest rivals.

"I think Bradford have shown enough already this season to suggest they will be challenging at the end of the year for the major honours," McDermott said.

"They will be disappointed with the loss at Warrington last Sunday but these things happen and it was probably the worst result for us because they are going to come out and be desperate to put that right on Friday night.

"It is going to be a huge game, as it was at Headingley Carnegie, and let's hope it is as intense."

Bradford scored a last-minute try through prop Adam Sidlow to snatch a deserved point at Headingley and coach Francis Cummins believes they will need an improved performance to claim maximum spoils on Friday.

"There are aspects that I want to ask more of against Leeds and we will have to work just as hard if not harder than we did that night," he said.

Leeds are without second rower Stevie Ward, who is facing a four-month lay-off with a dislocated shoulder, but have prop Ryan Bailey returning from a four-match ban.

The reigning champions are four points behind leaders Wigan but have two games in hand as the regular season reaches the halfway stage for most clubs with the first set of return fixtures.

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