Bristol City FC -March

 

On a surprising snowy day in BS3 City started the month at home to Sheffield Wednesday hoping to return to winning ways, “The Owls” had surprised may this season with their poor season occupying the lower half of the table for much of the season.

It was a game in which City controlled from the off, playing their quick free flowing football that has been synonymous with them. On 14 minutes City broke the deadlock,  a quick one-two between Reid and Brownhill before the Bristolian finished in the inside post. Sheffield Wednesday came close to finding an equaliser but Atdhe Nuhiu squandered his chance from 12 yards out. Directly from this City went up the other end and scored, Reid again finding the back of the net. More misery was to be piled onto the visitors as City scored again 2 minutes before the interval ; Josh Brownhill with a precise finish to the inside post after being teed up by Jamie Paterson’s back heel.

Second half there was to be no fightback from Wednesday and when city were awarded a penalty in the 62nd minute there was no stopping Reid to be denied his first career hat-trick and help secure a vital win in City’s play off push.

Midweek action City faced Preston North End away  in a crucial play off clash, hoping to avoid a repeat of last season’s 5-0 thrashing (A result which actually seemed to kick off city’s relegation fight). It was a cagey affair from the off both teams having key chances which should of been finished better, it took only 20 minutes to find the breakthrough; Hordur Magnusson clearing his lines rather than letting in run through to keeper Frank Fielding, his scuffed clearance falling straight to Browne who spotted fielding of his line and finished precisely. 1-0 Preston.

Second half action City played with much more attacking intent, they needed a result from this game, they were rewarded in the 67th minute when Reid’s in swinging cross was met by Diedhiou with a flashing header to even things up. City attacked with high pressure and ultimately got caught out for Preston’s eventual winner. It came only two minutes from the equaliser, Korey Smiths up field pressure caught out by the Preston midfield who teed up Maguire to calmly finish past Fielding and put the hosts in front. City huffed and puffed but couldn’t find another goal, the night only got worse for City when Aden Flint was given his marching orders after raising an arm to former teammate Greg Cunningham after being provoked.

Away from home City played Burton Albion a club who were struggling to stay up, on paper it looked to be an easy City victory but it did not turn out that way at all. It was a tripped I attended myself and can say it was also one of the worst away performances I’ve seen. City started poorly with no attacking options, it was Burton who penetrated the goal and should of gone in front if they had a striker that could finish. City did finally have a chance working it down the left hand side from Paterson but he could not put his shot on target.

The second half was not much better, Burton again having the better chances only to be denied by a fantastic save from keeper Frank Fielding. The game was crying out for width as that is where City looked to create their chances, however Lee Johnson opted for a bigger presence up top; Lois Diony and Milan Djuric being brought on. The subs had little affect and the game finished 0-0. It was a game in which City dropped two valuable points against a side they should easily be beating, in all honesty it felt like a defeat.

Another snowy day in BS3 City hosted Ipswich Town hoping to rectify there poor performance away. It was a game of two halves, City dominated play but couldn’t break through Ipswich’s stubborn defence. Ipswich should have really gone in front, their striker Martin Waghorn coming close and making himself a real nuisance. Second half City was much more better, breaking through the Ipswich defence much easier, this time just struggling to finish. Milan Djuric was brought on with 56 minutes gone hoping to give a much needed presence in the air, he certainly did. Youngster Lloyd Kelly’s delightful cross from the left finding Djuric who finished past the keeper with a crisp header. City 1-0. It was the only goal of the game as city grinded out a key win to help maintain their play off place.

For the final game of the month City played away to Barnsley. The home side started brightly having key chances from the off. It took only seven minutes for them to find the breakthrough. George Moncur’s corner met by Kieffer Moore who rose highest to head home the ball and put the hosts ahead. City could of got level, Josh Brownhill’s speculative effort saved. City did pull one back with a speculative effort, this time Famara Diedhiou, cutting inside he released a curling effort to find the top corner and bring City level.

Barnsley started the second half much quicker than City and should of gone in front, Frank Fielding producing some fantastic saves to deny the hosts. His heroics were short lived though as Barnsley eventually found a breakthrough; Kiefer Moore’s low cross met by the onrushing Potts to give the hosts a well earned lead. But City were not to lose this game and in the first minute of injury time found an equaliser, Josh Brownhill guiding a looping header into the back of the net and score against his former employers. The game finished 2-2 and helped keep City’s play off hopes alive.

Advertisements

“Accrington Stanley… Who are they?”

947701872

When people first hear those words most people think of THAT famous advert that helps put “Stanley” on the map. For those of you who don’t know (BUT WHO DOESN’T) back in the 1980’s The Milk marketing Board launched an advert featuring two young Liverpool fans, one young fan tel
ls his friend that none other than Ian Rush told him if he doesn’t drink his milk he will only be good enough to play for Accrington Stanley, prompting the other to say “Accrington Stanley, who are they?”. The advert has gone down with iconic status and is always linked with the club.

Fast forward to this week and Stanley are the talk of the town. Following an impressive season Stanley have been promoted to League One for the first time in their history after a 2-0 victory over Yeovil Town. Manager John Coleman has done a fantastic job at the League Two outfit with the joint lowest budget in the league Stanley have defied all odds and welldeserve their promotion.

It has been a long time coming for Stanley who were forced to reform back in 1968 after the club had folded. It has been a meteoric rise for Stanley, from Non-league to the return to the Football League it has certainly been a ride for “The Club that wouldn’t die”.

Congratulations Stanley!

947806524.jpg
Accrington Stanley players celebrate promotion to League One.

 

 

Bristol City FC – February

With City starting the year with a patchy start they looked to produce a strong February in hopes of cementing their play off place. They began the month away to Championship strugglers Bolton who were in dire need of points to help their relegation battle. City started well and controlled the game from the off, but they couldn’t capitalise on their dominance. The home side began to get into the came and grew in confidence as the game went on, this was rewarded in the second half after Sammy Ameobi’s solo goal gave the hosts the lead on 71 minutes. City tried desperately for an equaliser but the damage was already inflicted to leave a disappointing start to the month.

Back at home City hosted Sunderland who have surprised many this season as they were fighting for survival. On paper it seemed to be a comfortable victory for City and it did start that way. A strong first half performance saw city control a 3-0 lead, Aden Flints opener sending the robins on their way before Famara Diedhiou’s brace added further deficit to the scoreline.

A strong resurgence from Sunderland in the second half gave the visitors confidence, and as the game grew on so did they, attacking constantly in the second half city sat back and let them come at them. It was this that gave Sunderland their first goal, a cross from the right hand side unfortunately coming off Josh Brownhill to go into the back of the net and make Sunderland believe. City’s defensive naivety and Sunderland’s pressure was all that it took to give them another, a replica of the first goal this time being poked home by Aidan McGeady 3-2, they couldn’t surely? Then in injury time Lualua’s driven cross was flicked into the net by City’s own Marlon Pack. 3-3. Two second half own goals and attacking pressure from Sunderland gave them a much deserved draw, and leave City kicking their boots, and to much humour a game now renowned as “Bristanbul”

Away from home City travelled to Elland Road to face newly appointed Paul Heckingbottom’s Leeds United. City named a strong line up and was hoping to put their recent bad result behind them. They started strongly and found themselves 2-0 up within the opening half thanks to goals from Famara Diedhiou and Bobby Reid. Both goals coming from Hordur Magnusson’s niche long throw in.  Similar to the last city game, Leeds started the second half better of the two and began to come into the game, with 18 minutes left they were rewarded; Pablo Hernandez’s clipped cross finding Lasogga at the back post to give the home side a lifeline. Leeds had all the advantage and kept pressing for an equaliser, 8 minutes after their first Leeds had it. Pablo Hernandez’s corner flicked on at the near post to find Kemar Roofe who slid in to pull the home side level. It was another winning position squandered and two points dropped, questions were being asked and rightly so.

At home City faced high flying Fulham in a battle for the play off places, a win here would leapfrog the hosts and give them some breathing space on the chasing pack. The game started lively with end to end action, but it was the away side who would draw first blood; their man in form Alexander Mitrovic striking an effort past Frankie Fielding to give the visitors a 1-0 adavantage after 14 minutes. City almost equalised straight away, Ryan Kent’s free kick met by Hordur Magnusson who headed the ball inches wide. City played well and deserved their equaliser, their man Bobby Reid with a left foot finish past the keeper after a neat one two with Josh Brownhill.

Second half action City dominated the visitors allowing them little to no possession, the atmosphere was building in BS3 as City looked for a winner. City came close on numerous occasions even in the latter stages; Denis Odoi clearing Bobby Reid’s close range effort of the line. It was not to be for City who really needed the win to help maintain their play off push.

Back on the road City played promotion rivals Cardiff in Severn-side derby action. A win here would put significant pressure on Cardiff and produce a league double over them for the first time in a while. Cardiff played much better than City in the first half, City lacking much needed gusto and shown a rather lackluster performance, Cardiff had the better of the chances but could not find the back of the net. The second half was much of the same however it was Cardiff who finally found the back of the net, 82 minutes it took before Kenneth Zohore tapped in from close range to put the hosts in front. City attacked positively and looked to find an equaliser late on, Aden Flint screaming for a penalty after he felt he was brought down in the closing stages, but the ref did not agree. The game finished 1-0 Cardiff to give them the Severn-side derby bragging rights.

City finished the month in sixth place, two points ahead of Middlesbrough and Sheffield United but five points behind Fulham.

 

 

Bristol City FC – January

New Years Football and City played away to fellow promotion hopefuls; Aston Villa, it was a game Villa dominated from the off and they took their chances well, all of them in fact. It was a day for City to forget as they were beaten 5-0, their heaviest defeat all season in front of  a sell out away crowd, no points for City in a game in which they deserved to lose.

FA Cup action City were away to face Watford in the 3rd round, hoping to emulate their Carabao Cup heroics, having knocked them out of the Carabao Cup earlier in the season. With a semi-final on the horizon Lee Johnson played a mixed starting xi with youth and experience, it was this lack of experience that caught City out as they were outplayed in the first half, and it was punished after 37 mins; Andre Carillo breaking the deadlock. From then on it was all Watford and although City had brief spells in the second half it was not enough. Watford adding a second through Troy Deeney in the 57th minute and in the closing stages; Etioune Capou wrapped up the game, there was to be no FA Cup run for City.

Carabao Cup action City played away to Pep Guardiola’s all conquering Manchester City, re-invigorated under the Spaniard they sat top of the Premier League blowing many teams away this season. It was a day for all City fans to enjoy; 8,000 plus in fact as they hoped to see some more cup shocks.

Man City dominated from the off and came close on numerous occasions, but City prevailed and held on firmly. City did not just sit back they too wanted to win this, quick counter attacking football running at the Man City back line certainly took many by surprise, that including the fans! It was this play that was really impressive, breaking on the counter Bobby Reid was brought down in the box; penalty to City to create scenes from the away end, Reid dispatched the penalty coolly to send the away fans wild, Manchester City 0, Bristol City 1. The hosts could have equalised if it wasn’t for the heroics of Aden Flint, his goal line clearance keeping City in it, I promise you wont see one better.

Second half Man City played much better controlling the game with ease, their goal came after 55 minutes, a defence splitting ball from their keeper Claudio Bravo to Kevin De Bruyne who toyed with the City midfield before playing a neat one two and putting his strike past the keeper. The hosts were level. From then on it was a case of City holding onto the draw, that in it’s own right would of been fantastic. But it was not to be; a cruel injury time goal from substitute Sergio Aguero sealed the victory.

It was a night of mixed emotions from the highs of going ahead to the heartache of the last minute goal. There was however a high spirit amongst the fans, City had just held one of the best teams in the country to only lose by an injury time goal, I think many would of taken that. With City still thoroughly in it the return leg looked to be very entertaining.

Championship football, City hosted Norwich City with nothing but three points in sight. Both teams started well, city showing their attacking play that earned much praise from the Man City game. Norwich had the earlier of opportunities and should of gone ahead if it wasn’t from Frank Fielding denying James Maddison. Straight from the restart City were in control, attacking in numbers they came close on several occasions but could not find a breakthrough. It was this attacking threat that ultimately cost city as Norwich broke on the counter for James Maddison to finish with a fine effort ,1-0 Norwich and a poor defeat for City.

Away from home City faced fellow promotion hopefuls Derby County, the game was selected for sky coverage and looked to be a tight game. It was however the opposite Derby dominated the game from the off and city were lucky not to concede a penalty after Aden Flint looked to have brought down his man. This let off did nothing for City they defended all game and any chances they did have they squandered. The game finished 0-0 and in all seemed a good point for City, but if they were to push for promotion they needed to beat their play off rivals.

League cup action City hoped to keep their dreams alive, with a 2-1 deficit to overturn and Guardiola not willing to miss his first final for Man City it looked to be an interesting evening. Both teams played well Man City displaying the attacking football that has worked so well for them this season, city too holding a high attacking line hoping to score first. The deadlock was broken just before half time, Magnusson dispossessing the ball for Sane to pounce on and put them ahead. S

econd half Lee Johnson opted for more rigidity and attacking threat, bringing on Nathan Baker and Famara Diedhiou in hopes of finding a way through, but it was not to be, Man City leaped on the counter attack with De Bruyne playing a fine pass to find Aguero who finely finished past the keeper, City looked well and truly done. City coming this far would not give up, a late surge from them was rewarded with a lifeline, Marlon Packs header beating Bravo and to give some faith to the City faithful. There looked to be a grand stand finish and even extra time after Aden Flint tapped in from Bobby Reid in the late stages. City fought til the end giving everything, but Man City are leaders for a reason and again in injury time broke hearts, a neat passage of play led to Kevin De Bruyne firing past the keeper and ending citys fantastic cup run. The team had played well and gave their all, beaten numerous Premier League teams on their way one in which will never be forgotten.

Focus turned back to League action where they welcomed Ian Holloway’s QPR. City started shaky struggling to find their men, they did have the better of the chances and once they finally got going dominated QPR for the opening half, City had it all to do when Nathan Baker was sent off for what the referee deemed a “Serious Foul” (It would later be revealed not even QPR’s manager felt it was a red). City kept going and played well even with 10 men and were rewarded just before half time thanks to Famara Diedhiou nodding in from a Ryan Kent corner.

In the second half City began to feel the pressure QPR pressing high and working balls into the box, it was a resolute defence that kept City in it. The game looked finished when Joe Bryan added the second, Famara Diedhious initial effort saved only for it to fall to the fullback who raced onto it to put City 2-0 up. QPR continued to put up a fight but it was not good enough as City secured a first win in 2018 and a crucial one in the race for promotion.

IMG_5210[1]

Bristol City FC 17/18 – December

Ciy started the month at home to Middlesbrough in front of the Sky sports cameras, knowing a win would push them up to third and help push for the automatic places. Both teams had chances early on but it was a dominant performance from city which in turn allowed them to strike first just after half time, an in swinging right hand cross from Bailey Wright was met by Joe Bryan and put into the near post, then a few minutes later Aden Flint of all people made a surging run forward playing a one-two with Reid and crossing the ball into the box to find the onrushing Paterson who poked home from close range. Middlesbrough did get a goal back 15 minutes from time when Magnusson headed a clearance into his own goal. This was a not enough to stop city with all aspects of the team performing on the night to secure the three points.

Away from home City faced Sheffield United again in front of the Sky sports cameras, it looked to be an entertaining game with Sheffield’s United impressive return to the Championship. Both teams occupied the play off positions and for city it would be a game to steer clear of them. Shefield United dominated the first half and should of gone ahead hitting the woodwork on numerous occasions, but it was city who struck first after a surging run from Paterson he struck the ball to beat the keeper, 1-0 city. Sheffield United did get back into the game thanks to their man in form Leon Clarke, it was duly deserved to reignite the game. Both teams pushed for a winner but city come out top, Aden Flint in  injury time after a run forward Reid chipped the ball into the box to find Flint who made a neat finish past the keeper and send the fans wild, another three points on the road.

Back at Ashton Gate Nottingham Forest were the visitors, city would be looking to emulate their previous away performance and secure a home victory. Both sides started well with forest going closest, but it was city who would come strike first. Marlon Pack with his low driven shot from 25 yards out nestling into the bottom corner to break the deadlock. From then on city added another with Joe Bryan adding to the score sheet and continuing his impressive form this season. Forest did get a goal just after half time with a speculative 35 yard effort catching Frank Fielding and the whole of the stadium out. City, like they have done so often this season saw the game out to ensure the three points would be staying in BS3.

Back in League Cup action city hosted previous winners and English giants Manchester United. Ashton gate was a sellout and this match had been talked about for weeks, there was such a good feeling around the ground for this. United fielded a starting XI featuring the likes of Pogba, Ibrahimovic and Martial. City put out there strongest team in hope of shocking them. United started well, Martial playing a teasing cross to the back post finding Ibrahimovic who’s shot was deflected onto the crossbar, a sign of things to come. Rashford also came close, his shot hitting the post to the delight of the home crowd.  City too came close to going ahead, Korey Smith denied a shooting chance after a last ditch tackle from Daley Blind.

0-0 at halftime I think many City fans would of been happy with that; this was Manchester United after all. City started well in the second half making numerous chances but it would be Joe Bryan to open the scoring for city. 50 minutes on the clock Pack played a lovely through ball behind the defence to release Bryan, his shot from outside the area nestling into the top corner, scenes of sheer pandemonium and ecstasy; Bristol City 1 – Manchester United 0. United did find a equaliser after Zlatan Ibrahimoivc scored with a low shot from his set piece. All square. This did not scare city but only give them confidence, backed by an electric atmosphere one in which I can say is the best I’ve ever experienced they pushed for a winner… and that they did. When writing this I must say I have seen some highs and lows of watching city but what happened next goes down in Bristol City folklore it felt like time froze still, and to say I was there, I saw it, is something I will never ever forgot.

90+3 it is virtually the last kick off the game, I struggle to find words to sum it up and the only way I can is thanks to the commentary from the game “Still life in this for Bristol City, in by Taylor… IT’S SMITH!!!… THE ROOF HAS JUST COME OFF HERE AT ASHTON GATE, STOPPAGE TIME…BRISTOL CITY 2 MANCHESTER UNITED 1, THE HOLDERS ARE CRASHING OUT”. These words are forever etched into our history as we beat Manchester United to progress to the Semi-finals of the league cup and make it a very memorable night.

After the highs of the League Cup city returned to League action, away at Loftus Road facing Ian Holloway’s QPR. City were backed with a sold out away end, one in which contained myself. QPR started much better of the two and were rewarded with this after ex city man Luke Freeman’s free kick found the back of the net thanks to an Aden Flint own goal. It did not look like city at all and seemed their cup heroics had come back to bite them, but this was not the case and city played the second half much better, chance after chance came their way but they just couldn’t finish. On the 80th minute city were awarded a penalty, and the man in form, Bobby Reid calmly finished right in front of the travelling supporters to send them wild. From then on city dominated and should of won the game, Cauley Woodrow’s shot inches away from the goal, but it was not to be and the game ended 1-1, a good result on the road to help maintain city’s unbeaten month.

Boxing day football and city hosted Reading who have seemed to struggle after their play off final defeat last season. City came into the game unbeaten throughout the whole month and looked to keep their promotion push on track. City started well pressing in the early stages and whenever possible. They should of gone ahead but Josh Brownhill’s effort sailed over the crossbar, Reading reacted to this and gave their all causing the game to be closely knit affair. Second half city played much better and were rewarded thanks to Jamie Paterson’s curling effort finding the top corner of the net and leaving Mannone with no chance for heroics. In the latter stages city doubled their advantage through young substitute Lloyd Kelly, his quick rebound to Brownhills effort putting the game to bed and securing another important win.

Championship leaders Wolves were the visitors to Ashton Gate and the match was also being broadcast on sky. I did not manage to attend the game as I was in holiday in Scotland, we did however manage to find a pub broadcasting the game and were definitely the only city fans in there! City played well in the first half controlling the game from the off, they were unlucky not to go ahead on numerous occasions if it wasn’t for the heroics of Wolves keeper Ruddy. City were handed an even better chance to go ahead after Wolves were reduced to ten men, defender Batth sent off for his late challenge on Magnusson.

After the restart city finally went in front thanks to the star man Bobby Reid his low shot beating John Ruddy. Wolves fought back and they have a reason to be at the top of the league, Doherty was played through and keeper Fielding raced off his line bringing him down, Fielding was sent off and both teams were to play with ten men, game set and match. To make matters worse Wolves scored straight from the set piece and give the visitors vital confidence. It looked like it would finish all square but Wolves had other ideas, awarded a set piece near the edge of the area it was met by Bennett at the back post to beat the keeper and secure the three points for Wolves. A hard defeat to swallow but city were still in the play off places.

Bristol City FC 17/18 November

November

City started the month at home to promotion play off rivals Cardiff City in the “Severnside derby”, over the years this has been a tough game for city especially at home, their last win coming back in August 2012. The game itself was lively with both teams attacking from the off, but it was City who struck first, Callum O’Dowda scoring his first league goal on 20 minutes. Cardiff were not to be ruled out and just before half time equalised through Omar Bogle’s close range finish. City played well in the second half and found the game to be made wide open for them after Omar Bogle was sent off for his late foul after 55 minutes. City’s constant threat was rewarded after Magnusson’s cliche long range throw in was met by Aden Flint’s towering header, prompting a infamous Scotty Murray style celebration from the centre half. Three points secured and finally a home win against Cardiff.

Away from home City travelled to Sheffield Wednesday and would be hoping to improve on what was a sour defeat here last season. The game itself was nothing short of exciting, both teams had chances but neither could convert, city defended well against a Wednesday side that should really be up the other end of the table. The game finished 0-0 and for city was a strong point bearing in mind their recent record here.

Tuesday night action Preston North End were the visitors to BS3, Preston had been on a poor run and were hoping to bring that to an end, for city it was a chance to push on for the auto places. Preston started better of the two teams and should of gone ahead early on, city did have their chances but like Preston were not clinical. Preston’s constant attack and high pressing game paid off after they broke the deadlock just before half time. The second half for city was much better, they played their slik football that has been synonymous with them this season and it should of paid off, but it dint. Preston’s attacking line was too much for city and they doubled their lead after 78 minutes. Preston did all things well they did not give possession away cheaply, and as much as I hate it they did the dirty work such as time wasting when necessary, although city did get a late late goal it was merely consolation for what had been a poor and frustrating defeat from the team.

City travelled to Hull hoping to bounce back from that poor performance, and in all honesty it looked they were due for another loss, 2-0 down after 61 minutes things weren’t looking good, but this city team were in the play offs for a reason and the last 30 minutes were nothing short of amazing with city 2-0 down they continued to push for a goal. 68 minutes… GOAL!!! ADEN FLINT, a scrappy finish but who cared. 79 minutes… GOAL!!! BOBBY REID, the kid can’t stop scoring. With city now brimming with confidence they were not settling for a draw, they had already been 2-0 down and seemed out of it, no, they wanted all three points. 89 minutes gone, Josh Brownhill drives forward, he is tackled but gets up well and regains possession, picking the ball up he shoots from goal 20 yards out to find the back of the net and complete the comeback, three points secured and a fantastic November for city.

City sat 5th in the table, now it was just an action packed December to face featuring a small encounter with Manchester United… no biggy then.

 

 

Bristol City 17/18 – October

October

With City sat in the play off places Octobers set of fixtures looked like they could well and truly push on further up the table.

First to play City was Burton Albion, struggling this time out the brewers and city played out quite a rather dull game and although both sides did have their chances it was city who struck first, however it was controversially ruled out due to a foul in the build up of play. Much like last season the game finished 0-0 and it was a feeling of 2 points dropped rather than a point gained.

Back at the gate 24,000 attended to welcome high flying Leeds United, rejuvenated under manager Tomas Christiansen they too were up in the play off places and this looked to be a promotion chasing clash. Leeds started the better and took an early lead after just 4 minutes through their in form man Samuel Saiz, just 10 minutes later he struck again doubling the away sides advantage. City played well in the second half and played much much better showing the attacking intent Johnson had fulfilled into his players, this however was no use to city as Leeds struck again 3-0 to them and the game was finished. The match was not without tension when Matty Taylor clashed with Gaetano Beradi after his late tackle on him, both men were sent off to add to a miserable day at the office.

Back in league cup action City faced a 3rd Premier League club this time Roy Hodgsons new Crystal Palace. Palace started well with Bakary Sakho coming close, was it a sign of things to come? Palace struck after 20 minutes and we knew this looked like a one way slope, but city continuing their impressive league campaign equalised through Matty Taylor, after his weekends red card had been rescinded and minutes later City found themselves in front, Milan Djuric getting the goal after replacing the injured Diedhiou. Second half action city dominated all round and this was rewarded with a goal of sheer excellence, a thunderous strike from Joe Bryan from the edge of the box beat Wayne Hennesey clipping in under the side of the bar. Callum O’Dowda added a fourth with a fantastic volley to send city in to dream land and past the fourth round since 1989. Another Premier League scalp.

Focusing back on promotion city travelled to league strugglers Sunderland, it was a match many were looking forward to after not playing at the Stadium Of Light for many years. Both sides played well and both had fair chances but it was City who struck first through Bobby Reid to add to his impressive goal scoring season, with virtually the last kick of the half Sunderland equalised after a scramble in the box it fell to Lewis Grabban who poached into the back of the net. Second half city gave it their all and Milan Djuric was brought on to provide some added pressure to the Sunderland defence, this substitution worked a treat, Callum O’Dowda providing a lovely cross to meet the head of Djuric who calmly headed into the net in front of the travelling fans. Three points secured, it was party time as the fans said “Were on the P$%S in Newcastle!”.

Away from home again City were away at Fulham. In recent years this has been a huge away day for fans, from the 4-0 away win last season to the dramatic 2-1; 6 pointer win, this was a happy hunting ground for city and the fans loved it. City started the match in a new 4-5-1 formation, with Bobby Reid leading from the front and hoping to carry on his goal scoring form. Callum O’Dowda was denied early on and so too were Fulham after hitting the cross bar. City took the lead after a well worked goal resulting from a tap in from Bobby Reid, that was his 10th of the season, for a player who isn’t even a striker he isn’t doing bad! City added a second 5 minutes before half time through Korey Smith to give them a strong start for the second half. Fulham started well eager to banish their firs half woes, but it was city who could of added a third after Paterson fired just over the target, things would only get worse for Fulham, Kamara sent off for violent conduct meant they finished the game with ten men and city took three points back to BS3.

City finished the month in 3rd place and kept the promotion dream alive.