Where City have finished in every season with a worse, or equal, start to this campaign

You do not have to know football to realise that with the season already over a third of the way through to completion, Bradford City’s class of 2018-19 are in trouble at the foot of League One.

Last week, we discussed how City had never started a season worse than this in terms of losses – with 12 defeats from the first 16 games still comfortably the worst start in the club’s history in that regard.

But in terms of what really matters – points on the board – it’s still some way off being the absolute worst. However, even in seasons of absolute misery like the 2000-01 campaign, when we were relegated from the Premier League in some style, that team had still amassed more points at the 16-game stage (11) than the current crop (10).

Of course, pre-1981, it was two points for a win in the Football League. So with the historical adjustments made to weigh up every start under the current three points for a win system, here’s every start which has been equal to or worse than the current one – including where the Bantams finished in the league each year.

Points after 16 games: 7 (1 win, 4 draws)
Final position: 22nd (bottom) of Division Two

Still the worst start in terms of points returned from the first 16 games in the club’s history, there would be no great mid-season turnaround for Colin Veitch’s class of 1926-27.

City won only one game between the start of the season and mid-December, realistically consigning them to the drop before Christmas.

There was a brief flurry of four wins in five games between March and April, but all that did in reality was spare City from an embarrassing points tally. They finished with just 23, eight points from safety, and were relegated to Division Three (North).

Points after 16 games: 8 (1 win, 5 draws)
Final position: 22nd (bottom) of Division Three (North)

The 1948-49 campaign began well enough for David Steele’s Bantams, with City claiming four points from their first two games without conceding a goal.

However, the 1-0 over Mansfield on August 25th would be City’s only win of the season until Christmas Day! And by then, City’s miserly tally of eight points meant the writing was on the wall somewhat.

City finished bottom of Division Three (North) but were spared relegation given how Division Four had yet to be created. However, given how the team bottom of Division Three (South), Crystal Palace, amassed more than the 23 points the Bantams managed, it made them the worst-performing team in the Football League.

Points after 16 games: 10 (2 wins, 4 draws)
Final position: 19th in Division Four

1964-65 saw the Bantams have to wait until their ninth game of the season for the first win in Division Four. By then, they had drawn four and lost four of their opening eight games – and things didn’t improve thereafter the 2-1 win over Oxford.

By the 16-game mark, City had won again just once, a 4-1 win over Wrexham. However, they did at least manage to spare themselves from a battle against re-election into the Football League. 12 months later, however, City would not be so lucky.

Points after 16 games: 10 (2 wins, 4 draws)
Final position: 23rd in Division Four (re-elected)

The mid-1960s was not a great time to be a Bradford City fan.

That’s because in 1965-66, the season after another terrible start, the Bantams picked up just 10 points from their first 16 games, eventually being forced to re-apply to the Football League for their place among the elite after a miserable season.

They were at least spared the ignominy of finishing bottom of the entire Football League by Wrexham who, along with City, Lincoln and Rochdale, were all successfully re-elected.

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