Exeter manager Matt Taylor felt his side fully deserved the 3-2 victory over Bradford after coming from behind at St James Park.
Taylor saw his team concede two shocking goals when defensive errors allowed Bradford debutants Charles Vernam and Olly Crankshaw to score, either side of a Pierce Sweeney header for the Grecians.
But Ryan Bowman and Matt Jay, from the penalty spot, were on target in the second half as Exeter overturned the half-time deficit to seal the win.
“We deserved the win, but I find it hard to describe certain parts of that game, such as the goals we conceded,” Taylor said.
“We were so dominant at the start of that game and it is a counter-attack that does us.
“We worked so hard to get back in the game and did so with a set-piece and then concede a calamitous second goal.
“Players make mistakes – I accept that – but we were playing backwards and sideways in dangerous areas too often and you probably heard me screaming: ‘Play the ball forward!’
“We needed an old-school mentality in that backline to get the ball away from that mess, and we were creating mess on the back of it, but we were so responsible with our approach in the second half and did what was needed.
“We wore them down with a bit of quality for the second goal and then a ball over the top for Ryan to have a foot race and win the penalty.
“The scoreline didn’t reflect what we got in the first half but, as you can probably tell, I am delighted with the second half and the win.”
Bradford interim boss Mark Trueman said: “It was disappointing the manner in which we conceded the goals.
“We always knew the threats going forward from Exeter. They put on a lot of pressure in that second half, late on.
“We knew what the new players could offer to the team in terms of going forwards. They are learning what we want out of possession as well.
“So we are delighted they have started brightly and both got a goal and that will be positive for them and good for their confidence going forwards.
“We have to learn from the goals we conceded and moments in the game where, for some reason, we kept dropping deeper and deeper whereas in the past we have kept a bit more of a higher line and we need to improve on that.
“There were times we had high spells of possession and you need to try and make them count.
“We missed opportunities to get our shots off around the box and test their keeper. We will learn from that and we will make sure we right these wrongs on Tuesday (away at Scunthorpe).”
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