- English Football League - Championship
- Sunday, September 2nd 2018
- Ashton Gate
James Crawley reports from Ashton Gate
Report: Bristol City 4-1 Blackburn Rovers
Sunday, September 2nd 2018
City fought from behind to secure an emphatic first home win of the season, with Famara Diédhiou netting on his return from suspension in a 4-1 win over Blackburn Rovers.
Despite their early dominance at Ashton Gate, City fell behind through a freak corner which sailed straight into the net, courtesy of Charlie Mulgrew, but Josh Brownhill struck a perfect set piece of his own, crashing home a curling free kick to equalise.
Marley Watkins struck in the second-half to finish off a fantastic City move, before Diédhiou - making his first start of the campaign after serving a six-game ban - struck City’s third goal of the match and Pack’s guided header added further daylight late on.
The result seals City’s third consecutive win of the campaign and lifts them to sixth in the Sky Bet Championship table.
Lee Johnson named an unchanged starting XI from the side which beat Swansea City a week earlier, with Diédhiou available on the bench after serving his six-game suspension.
CITY START ON TOP
It was a similar start to the match in South Wales, with the Robins showing early attacking intent. Again it was Andreas Weimann who could have scored his sixth goal in as many games but his decent header from Jack Hunt’s deep cross sailed wide of the Rovers goal after just a minute of play.
Hunt then showed the best of his defensive and attacking attributes when he intercepted a Rovers pass before bursting forward and stinging the palms of David Raya with a driven shot. Niclas Eliasson followed up with a left-sided cross but the dangerous ball into the visitor’s box was flicked away by Rovers captain Mulgrew, with Weimann waiting to pounce.
The Austrian forward did manage to get a shot on target shortly after but he was stretching to reach Eliasson’s cross and Raya spread himself to make the save, before Brownhill threatened with a curling effort.
However, Rovers stunned the home side with a bizarre goal direct from a corner. Up stepped their skipper Mulgrew whose set piece curled all the way in at the near post.
And it could have been 2-0 but for the woodwork. Kelly tried his best to deal with a floated ball into the box but Kasey Palmer snuck in behind the young left-back and struck the bar from a tight angle.
But Brownhill, who had earlier curled an effort wide from open play this time found the back of the net in style with a free kick. Ryan Nyambe fouled Weimann on the edge of the area and up stepped City’s number eight who bent the ball around the wall, right-footed past Raya.
The game began to open and Mäenpää kept City level not long after when he stood firm to deny Adam Armstrong, before Hunt and Watkins exchanged passes, with the City right-back's cross clipping the bar.
City started the brighter of the two teams after the restart and just six minutes into the second half Matty Taylor was slipped in but he saw his low effort pushed away by Raya.
THE ROUT BEGINS
However, they made their pressure count when Watkins tapped home to make it 2-1. Eliasson trapped a diagonal pass with a beautiful touch, before cutting in off the right-wing and picking Taylor with a cross. The striker took one touch to chest the ball into his Wales teammate and Watkins made no error in rolling the ball into the bottom left corner of Raya’s goal.
Senegal striker Diédhiou was always set for a warm reception when he replaced the ever-impressing Taylor and it wasn’t long before he was back on the scoresheet by finishing a swift counter-attack. Pack broke forward from his own half to pick out Weimann. He motored downfield, unchallenged before opting to pass to Diédhiou on his left and his strike partner made no mistake by tucking the ball low beyond the Rovers keeper.
Blackburn's attacking threat had all but diminished now and City inflicted more pain with a Pack header. Eliasson cut in off the wing again, his cross was flicked into the path of Pack and the midfielder guided a looping header into the far corner.
Eliasson twice went close to getting in on the action himself: first he tricked his way into the area before striking straight at Raya, before Jamie Paterson’s clever back-heel found the winger, who couldn’t quite take the ball around the Rovers shotstopper.
Blackburn had little time to muster a fightback but Tomas Kalas still had his defending duties to do by heading a ball out from under his own crossbar.
However, City held on to secure their 4-1 victory as they head into the international break. Johnson’s side return to BS3 when they host Sheffield United on September 15th (3pm).
Photography by JMPUK.
- Brownhill (38') , Watkins (55') , Diedhiou (73') , Pack (82')
- Marley Watkins, Andreas Weimann, Matty Taylor
- Mulgrew (13')
- Ryan Nyambe, Kasey Palmer, Danny Graham