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Martin highlights positives of international break

Rest and recovery have been critical during the international break with a tough run of seven games in three weeks ahead for Bristol City.

The Robins enjoyed four wins from four to sit top of the Sky Bet Championship table heading into it, and now they aim to pick up where they left off when football resumes with a trip to Barnsley on Saturday (October 17th).

Chris Martin believes City can do that, having used the break to analyse their game and find ways of improving.

“With the intensity of the Championship and looking at the schedule of the next seven games in 21 days we face, it was a good time to rest, regroup and assess how things have gone,” Martin said.

“We’ve had four wins from four but there is still a lot of room for improvement from everybody as a team. We’ve looked at that over the break, looking at the positives and what we can add.

“It was a good time to do that and with how we’ve trained this week, we’ve looked fresh, fit and the standard and quality has been very good all week and that stands us in good stead moving into Saturday.”

Martin said the trip to Oakwell could present City’s toughest test yet. They overcame a resilient Nottingham Forest prior to the international break, but now they face a Barnsley side also without a league win in 2020/21.

“They play with a lot of intensity, they’re a fit team from my memory of last season,” Martin remembers from his time at Derby County. “It was an end-to-end game and they sucker punched us with a late equaliser but that’s the kind of team they are; relentless in their work rate with threats so it will be a tough game. They’re desperate for points but we’re looking forward to the challenge.

“It’s still very early in the season so clubs have gone through form which won’t be reflective of the season as a whole. Nottingham Forest was our toughest game and they had no points at the time. We did enough to win the game but we’re under no illusions this will be another test game, in some ways maybe tougher.

“They will be so desperate for the points, so we will have to be at our very best to win the game.”

Watch: Pre-Barnsley press conference

City face Barnsley at Oakwell this Saturday (3pm KO), with the match to be streamed live and exclusively on Robins TV. Coverage starts at 2.30pm.

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