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Coventry City 3-2 Bristol City

Coventry desperately needed a rebound against Bristol. One win five, and seemingly half of the Championship ready to leapfrog them, meant a strong performance was needed.


Almost immediately, Coventry broke down the left and a shot from Hamer is well saved by Bentley, just 27 seconds into the game.


A lot of diagonals.

Coventry have found success in recent games with diagonal passes from Hamer. Those passes pin the opposition deep and account for a 1/4 of Hamer's passes in this game alone. As Coventry had more of the ball early in this game, it was a successful way to break the compact line of Bristol.


With Bristol deeper and then attacking with longer passes in a 4-3-3, Coventry were able to play 2v1 on long ball runners after being organized from deep. Here you see Martin checks all the way into midfield for the ball to combine with Tanner. Tanner's long ball into Massengo, who ran beyond Martin, was contested by JCS and McFadzean and dealt with comfortably the Sky Blue pair.


Long and quick was the trend from Bristol as they could have had a penalty shout on 5 minutes with Rose and Moore ultimately dispossessing O'Dowda, but it was very controversial. A VAR review would have been interesting.


Prior to the end of the half drama, Bristol were limited to just two shots on goal from 35% possession. Then the final 5 minutes of the first half.


Coventry began to get stretched. Frustration perhaps growing from the struggles in front of goal results in disorganization in the transition. Here Bristol have worked the ball forward with Bakinson and Coventry are out of shape. The ball wide to O'Dowda is whipped in early for Scott, but he puts it over. As a fan, you think, "Of course. We can't score, and then Bristol look like they might in one quick attack"


The warning sign was real and goes to show how an imbalanced game can quickly change.

Martin peels off of McFadzean to receive the ball between the lines. Weimann runs behind, and offside, JCS. However, the run is excellent as Martin, now facing forward and free to look up, can find the run of Weimann who is on the goal-side of Maatsen. The result is Maatsen pulling Weimann back. Penalty. Red Card. 1-0.


Lots to break down here - McFadzean staying in the defensive line, preferring to offer up no forward pass with a compact defense. However, JCS pulled out of line just enough due to the run of Weimann, who had switched flank with O'Dowda.


Then it was almost 2-0 after a JCS and McFadzean horror show and Coventry, shaken, were glad for the halftime whistle.


Arguably, the red card and goal changed Coventry for the good due to struggles against the compact Bristol line. Here Sheaf tries to break a line with a ball into Gyokeres, but Weimann and Bakinson are narrow enough to prevent it. Note O'Dowda at the bottom of the image breaking back to cover any diagonal out to Dabo.


Into the second, an attacking midfielder would often be the sacrifice for a red card, but credit to MR here. Todd Kane played very well and kept City going forward. Having had 65% of the ball, Coventry felt good about the opportunity at hand.


The reward was almost immediate. Whilst not against the run of play, it was completely opportunistic. McFadzean received the ball from Hamer and was isolated, so his only option was to go long. Vyner, for some reason, tries to win the ball, but misses it and Gyokeres spins on the ball and is gone. In trying to get back to the ball, Vyner brings him down and Godden puts away the penalty.


The decision to keep two strikers on almost created a second as a long goal kick from Moore was flicked on by Gyokeres and chased down by Godden. It doesn't seem like a lot, but there are 5 Bristol players in their own half, for a Coventry goal kick. That leaves only 5 to press should Coventry want to play short and continue to control the game.


The Bristol threat was still there. The goal came against the run of play, from a long shot and an uncharacteristic 'mistake' by Moore, but Bristol were beginning to exploit channel overloads. Here you can see Weimann and Tanner overloading Dabo with Massengo connecting the two. At 2-2, Bristol had 55% of possession and were beginning to frustrate Coventry and one would have thought that Bristol would want to go for the win here given their poor form recently.


However, the fortress CBS came good. The 15k or so Coventry fans roared on the team and O'Hare silenced his critics for a few minutes with another uncharacteristic moment and put the ball in the bottom corner from outside the box.


Sheaf tried to give Bristol another way in with a 'characteristic' mistake laying the ball into Martin, but the shot is fired wide. Then City showed why they have 4 goals in stoppage time this season. Walker checks Massengo off of the ball from a Bristol throw-in and it's 3v2 for the win. Though Walker decides to shoot from 20+ yards out and puts it wide.


Coventry fans were mad at Walker. O'Hare was mad at Walker. Godden was mad at Walker.

But all is forgiven because Kelly connects with Sheaf and Godden does the rest.


No trends here. Just amazing highlights that show the fight, and the momentum behind this team as the November international break takes over.

One final note. As the players celebrate in front of singers corner. Look who is there too.


Stats from @whoscored

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