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James Crawley

James Crawley writes

Posted Saturday, September 18th 2021

📝 Report: QPR 1-2 Bristol City

Nahki Wells struck a dramatic injury-time winner against his former loan club as City sealed all three points away to QPR.

It was largely one-way traffic but Dan Bentley proved a tough nut to crack as he made save after save to keep the R’s at bay.

City had led at the break through Chris Martin’s far-post finish, but QPR battled back quickly with a goal through Sam McCallum.

QPR did everything but find the back of the net as the second half continued and they paid for it, with substitute Wells racing away at the end before firing low past Seny Dieng.

The result secures City a third consecutive away win and stretches their unbeaten run to four games.

The background

City returned to the Kiyan Prince Foundation Stadium, where they had not lost in 90 minutes since 2016. Young George Tanner was handed his club debut, while Tyreeq Bakinson earned his first league start of the season. They replaced Zak Vyner and Alex Scott, respectively, while Andy King (tight thigh) missed out. He is expected be fit enough for selection against Fulham next weekend.

What happened

QPR would dominate much of the first half but they found themselves under a bit of pressure inside the opening 15 minutes. Tanner settled into this one and found himself in advanced positions down the right, forcing a corner which led to Tomas Kalas heading over the bar.

What followed were wasted opportunities for the hosts as they failed to make their own pressure count as the half progressed.

Lyndon Dykes headed against the post before City could clear their lines, before Bentley pulled off one of many big saves, this one at his near post. Yoann Barbet advanced forward picking out Andre Gray and he got the wrong side of Kalas before shooting but Bentley got behind the effort.

City’s shotstopper then tipped over a drive from Hoops captain Stefan Johansen, before Jordy de Wijs headed just wide.

By this point City would have been happy to hear the half-time whistle, get inside and regroup but as is so often the case in football, teams can be punished for not taking their chances - Nigel Pearson’s side certainly obliged by that rule on this occasion.

The opening goal came on the stroke of half-time. Bakinson had already sprayed chipped balls forward looking for the runs of Weimann during the afternoon but this time it was Han-Noah Massengo making the forward run. The midfielders combined with Massengo crossing for Werimann in the box, he turned to pick out Martin and the striker made no mistake as the Robins led at the break.

Nathan Baker made way for Jay Dasilva for the start of the second half but the Robins’ lead would last just ten in-game minutes as the R’s equalised inside the 55th minute. A loose ball, after Pring’s headed clearance, fell for McCallum and he fired low into the back of the net.

By now the hosts were back on top and nearly grabbed a second goal through Dykes when he met Gray’s pass but Bentley denied him one-on-one.

Barbet drilled off target, while Chris Willock bent a shot agonisingly wide with City up against the QPR wave. With the hosts’s pressure growing, Pearson made his second change of the day with former R’s loanee Wells brought on to replace Martin.

He showed some good touches early on, with Weimann operating further right but still the home side came forward in their pursuit of taking the lead. Substitute Charlie Austin couldn’t get the better of Bentley, who then produced a fine low stop to deny Dykes, with the City keeper in inspired form doing all he could to keep the scores level.

Antoine Semenyo later replaced Pring as Pearson looked to more attacking options.

He went on to win a free kick no more than a yard outside the penalty area, from which Dasilva’s ball into the box had to tipped away by keeper Dieng. The resulting corner from Matty James picked out Rob Atkinson but his header was wide of the far post, with encouraging signs on show from the visitors.

Bentley still had work to do but City would have the last word as Wells pounced against his former side in the dying embers of the fixture.

City were blistering on the counter-attack with Weimann leading the charge, he spread the ball for Wells whose touch was perfect, before he found the far corner in front of the travelling away support.

It was the perfect end to what had been a tough afternoon but three points remain three points, however they are secured.

City v QPR: Bentley, Tanner, Kalas, Atkinson, Baker (Dasilva, 46), Massengo, James, Bakinson, Pring (Semenyo, 71), Weimann, Martin (Wells, 62). Subs not used: O'Leary, Simpson, Williams, Palmer.

UP NEXT

City's next opponents are Fulham, who visit Ashton Gate on Saturday, September 25th (3pm). 

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Robins TV will be streaming the fixture but as per EFL regulations, it will only be available to overseas subscribers. Coverage will start at 2.30pm.

A Robins Live audio pass is also available. 

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Post-match reaction

📸 MATCH ACTION

📊 Bristol City in numbers

To follow...

  • Possession: 37.3%
  • Shots: 9
  • Passes: 322
  • Pass success rate: 71%
  • Tackles: 14
  • Clearances: 38
  • Interceptions: 14
  • Aerial duels won: 23
  • Best Opta rating: Tomas Kalas 8.51

ON THE BALL

  • Most passes: Matty James 47
  • Best pass accuracy: Jay Dasilva 88.9%
  • Most touches: James 58

DEFENSIVE DUTIES

  • Most tackles: Han-Noah Massengo 3
  • Most interceptions: Massengo 6
  • Most clearances: Kalas 9

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