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First Team News

A Match To Remember: Bristol City

14 January 2021

First Team News

A Match To Remember: Bristol City

14 January 2021

For our look back to a previous encounter with our next opponent, we go back five years to the same week in January 2016, when a former player came back to haunt the Robins on a cold night at Ashton Gate.

First Team News

Watch PNE Take On Bristol City On iFollow PNE

14 January 2021

It was then North End left back Greg Cunningham who scored a late goal that gave the Lilywhites victory over his former club Bristol City.

After an uneventful opening 45 minutes, the visitors went ahead when Robins defender Nathan Baker headed past his own goalkeeper Richard O'Donnell, but Aaron Wilbraham's deflected strike squeezed in moments later to equalise for the home side.

However, Cunningham, who had left City to join PNE the previous summer, headed in off the post to snatch victory.

The result lifted the Lilywhites up to 13th in the Championship table, 13 points above 22nd-placed Bristol City - the team they finished ten points behind in League One the season before, as both sides were promoted.

Defeat for Steve Cotterill's team also extended their winless run in the league to six matches, and meant they had not recorded victory at Ashton Gate since 3rd November.

They spurned a number of opportunities against North End, with Wilbraham and substitute Bobby Reid both superbly denied by goalkeeper Sam Johnstone, while Jonathan Kodjia's injury-time header hit the post.

But the Lilywhites, who hit the woodwork through new boy Ben Pearson before Cunningham's 80th-minute winner, were able to hold on for their third league success in a row.

Then Robins manager Steve Cotterill said afterwards: "It was a difficult night for us. The players gave all they could give, but a lot of energy and emotion had been expended at West Brom on Saturday.

"We didn't have the normal snap about our game in the first half and Preston enjoyed it because we played to their strengths.

"My lads have left everything on the pitch. They are giving all they have, but we need to add bodies to our squad and that has been the case since May.

"These are tough times and we have to get through them. We deserved to win, but how many times have I said that this season?"

And Simon Grayson added: "We select a team to make life difficult for the opposition, but we also know we have good players capable of winning games.

First Team News

A Foot In Both Camps: Bristol City

14 January 2021

"The first half was good from our point of view because our keeper hasn't had a save to make. We didn't pass the ball as well as we can, but we were professional and very solid.

"After we scored we were a bit sloppy for their equaliser, but after that the lads showed great character and we hit the post before grabbing the winner.

"Greg has been taking stick in training for not even looking like scoring. But it was a training ground routine tonight and a sweet moment for him, which he fully deserved."

Bristol City line-up: O'Donnell, Ayling, Flint, Baker, Little (Burns, 77), Pack, Freeman (Reid, 57), Smith, Bryan, Wilbraham (Agard, 77), Kodjia. Subs not used: Williams, El-Abd, Wagstaff, O'Leary.

PNE line-up: Johnstone, Woods (Vermijl, 89), Clarke, Huntington, Wright, Cunningham, Johnson, Gallagher, Pearson (Browne, 82), Garner, Doyle (Robinson, 72). Subs not used: Kilkenny, Brownhill, Hugill, Kirkland.

Referee: James Linington

Attendance: 14,586

On Saturday, former PNE and City defender Rob Edwards joins Guy Clarke for full coverage of the game on iFollow PNE from just after 2.30pm. You can sign up for a match pass now for £10 – click here to sign up and tune in on Saturday afternoon to see PNE take on City in the south west.

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