MATTY Dolan has joined Bradford City to realise his ambitions of becoming a regular in the Championship – despite interest from hometown club Hartlepool United.
The 21-year-old made his loan move with the Bantams permanent yesterday after the end of his contract at Middlesbrough, with whom he had been at since a schoolboy.
He penned a year’s deal at Valley Parade with the option of a further year.
Midfielder Dolan spent this season out on loan at Pools and League One Bradford, following on from his previous loan spell the campaign previous with Yeovil Town, who he helped get promoted to the second tier.
The former English Martyrs pupil did court interest from his past loan clubs - “I spoke to Colin Cooper a few times and Gary (Johnson, Yeovil boss) in January” – but the lure of Bradford’s wider package was a more attractive destination.
“I was shocked when I first went there playing in front of 16,000 fans,” he told SportMail.
“The whole point is that Bradford want to be a Championship club and I want to be part of that.
“I’ve done it before and I want to do it again.
“The play-offs are the target.
“I don’t want to say that the play-offs are the minimum because then you set yourself up for disappointment.
“But it’s a massive club that is only going one way.
“They had the great League Cup run last season and got promoted – why can’t the club kick on again?”
Having outgrown development football, Dolan was determined is determined to become an ever-present figure in the heart of midfield under Phil Parkinson’s tutelage at Valley Parade.
He continued: “I want to play football every week and putting myself in the shop window helps that cause.
“I want to play all the time, that’s what I had to look at.
“I want a run of games and the more you play the more confidence you get, which is what happened at Pools and Yeovil. I owe a lot to Colin for giving me the chance in centre-mid and I want to hold that position down at Bradford.”