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ricardo

Ricardo's report v Bristol City

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A fine August night and the pitch looking in beautiful condition as City began defending the River End. IMO we always perform better when kicking towards the Barclay first half.With McGovern retaining his place between the sticks it was an otherwise unchanged side but they were pushed back early as Bristol began with the wind in their sails winning three corners in the opening five minutes. The City rearguard coped well and with Klose and Bennett looking like a pairing of some authority, there was little in the way of chances in the City box.At the other end City were trying to stretch the visitors defence but as on Saturday a wayward pass all too often caused a move to break down. Naismith had the first shot of any note on the 10 minute mark but it drifted a couple of yards wide. Murphy had a few runs down the flank but was having trouble getting the better of his fullback.Bristol looked a lively outfit and Kodija, an awkward customer who got some real venom behind a shot from the angle which McGovern did well to push behind. Apart from this effort the Bristol forwards were usually well marshaled by the home defence. The Canaries soon broke out and at last got some pressure on the visitors back line as Brady tee''d up Tetty for what looked for all the world an opening goal. A vintage Tetty thunderbolt crashed back off O''Donnell''s left post before being scrambled clear. Cue lots of Oohh''s and Aahh''sIt then all got a bit scrappy for a time but the final quarter was all City. On 38 minutes some crisp passing on the edge of the box involving Murphy and Wes, left Johnny Howson with a clear sight at goal and the City captain made no mistake with a curling effort  into the top right hand corner. It could easily have become two as a sweeping move involving Naisy, Wes and Jerome almost released Murphy through the middle while moments later O''Donnell was called upon to beat away a rising Naismith drive.A satisfactory half was greeted with generous applause from the CR faithful but my son and I ripped a couple of ironic boo''s into them just for the sake of balance.[;)]I was hoping to see City up the pace from the off when the second half began but Bristol were still looking very lively and competing for every ball. Brady surged down the left in the 48th minute but his low angled cross was scrambled away for a corner and the game descended into another scrappy period where passes from both sides were going astray. McGovern was finally called into action to beat away a looping header but inspite of a bit of Bristol pressure the City defence looked well in control. It was Brady again who got the crowd going with another great run but Murphy was on his heels rather than his toes when the pass came through. It was no surprise to see Canos replace the City youngster on the hour mark and he was soon showing some nice touches down the right. He almost got on the scoresheet but his shot, after a neat turn, lacked any real power. City now began to really dominate with Pinto and Brady surging down the wings and Naismith and Wes at the heart of every City move. Wes was so unlucky not to add his name to the scorers list when he shimmied into the box only to see his shot come back off the post.They certainly deserved a second goal but it refused to come despite some near things and some robust Robbins defending. Mulumbu came on to tighten up the middle for the last ten minutes and then Lafferty to embarrassing rapturous applause with just a minute left. Shades of Luciano Becchio. Why sections of the crowd latch onto to certain players who have done the best part of bugger all is beyond me.Anyhow, a good three points with City clearly a class above their opponents. My men of the match were Naismith and Wes who were both outstanding for workrate and skill and were quick to chase back when a rare mistake was made. At the back Klose looked a class above everyone and never put a foot wrong so all things considered a very satisfactory performance and result.[Y]

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[quote user="ricardo"].... and then Lafferty to embarrassing rapturous applause with just a minute left. Shades of Luciano Becchio. Why sections of the crowd latch onto to certain players who have done the best part of bugger all is beyond me.[/quote]It''s ridiculous! Players who get a better reputation by not playing. Especially seeing as though he was replacing a player who not only has scored loads of goals for us at this level - but also put in one hell of a shift on the night.

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