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Johnson calls for squad to bounce back

City Head Coach Lee Johnson has urged his players to bounce back and set high standards for when they return to action at home to Charlton Athletic on Wednesday night. 

City's head coach bemoaned too many cases of lost possession in Bedfordshire, where two second-half goals, six minutes apart, helped Luton Town to their 3-0 win.

A late own-goal from Ashley Williams added salt in the wounds as City slipped to only their second loss of the campaign.

Here's what Johnson had to say after the full-time whistle.

Lost possession costly

"I’m bitterly disappointed for sure. I thought there were too many cheap giveaways and that’s what cost us. First half we were good at times in our attacking play, our counter-attacking. We recycled the ball well, got it into the pockets. Kasey Palmer had numerous opportunities to execute killer balls but didn’t quite do it on the day and that’s fine, it happens.

"We had two or three good chances with the keeper off his line to loop it over him but by the same token they had chances. Defensively, through the middle of the pitch, we weren’t strong enough today and that is most concerning.

"The first goal was always going to change attitude and dynamic. The easiest thing in the world is to get hold of the ball, to wriggle but the hardest bit is to execute the pass or the touch to lay it off to somebody. We got pinned a lot by their centre-forwards and we didn’t pin anywhere near enough."

Setting standards

"I said we need to set standards both individually and collectively. Individually, we have to go out on to the pitch as Bristol City and believe you can be the best player on the pitch. That’s football arrogance that I am after and we do show it at times. Today we were out-enthused by a side who we expected to be up for it, on the front foot. When they scored the first goal it made it difficult for us to go and get back into the game."

Room for improvement

"It was two cheap giveaways from players and it’s not good enough. It’s not good enough. With the quality players we have, we have to hold on to the ball better and by the same token we have to defend better. People will give the ball away but we need to be close enough in possession, compact out of possession and therefore you do the dirty bits well. The basics today, in the second half, weren’t good enough and they were better at the basics."

Responding at Ashton Gate

"I’m looking for character now to bounce back because individually the players weren’t necessarily poor but we didn’t have that team cohesion. Whether that’s the international break – I’m not making excuses because they were better than us today – but I don’t like the breaks for that reason. It’s good to get the rest but when you only have a couple of days with the majority of the boys it takes time to get into the swing of it and we didn’t get into the swing of it in the second half."

On Ádám Nagy's injury...

“[He's] not close, [it's] very, very frustrating. I think he’s had an injection today that puts him out for at least 10 days. It’s a steroid.”