Robins Lotto winners (August 7th)
Posted: Friday, August 7th 2020
Saturday, July 16th 2016
First-half headers from Aden Flint and Jonathan Kodjia helped Bristol City to a pre-season victory more comfortable than the scoreline suggested as Lee Johnson got the better of former Yeovil Town team-mate Darren Way at Huish Park.
Flint dispatched a Gary O’Neil corner midway through the first period before Kodjia buried Joe Bryan’s cross right at the end of it.
Tom Eaves scored the goal of the game before Way changed his entire XI just shy of the hour, but City never looked like conceding again.
Johnson handed a debut to Callum O’Dowda on the right flank, while Lee Tomlin made his first start since returning to City from the left.
Fellow summer recruit Gary O’Neil started alongside Marlon Pack in midfield with Bobby Reid in the number ten role behind Kodjia.
Mark Little, Flint, Derrick Williams and Joe Bryan made up the back four in front of Richard O’Donnell, with City supporters still waiting for a first glimpse of Hordur Magnusson, who will join up with the squad in La Manga next week.
City began on the front foot, forcing a couple of early corners and making goalkeeper Artur Krysiak worry when an O’Neil shot took a looping deflection and dropped narrowly wide.
Bryan had already made one surging run down the wing before a sustained spell of possession culminated in Pack’s lofted pass into space and a Bryan cross headed over by Reid.
Three minutes later City had the goal they had been threatening, as Flint rose highest to score in typical fashion – a powerful downward header from O’Neil’s right-wing corner.
Yeovil had previously fired their first warning shot through Ryan Hedges before defender Alex Lacey attempted to “do a Flint” only for his effort to bounce out off the crossbar.
Then O’Donnell had to be alert to make an instinctive stop once Nathan Smith had nipped in front of his man at the far post.
Reid, Tomlin and Williams all went close as City created the vast majority of the chances, but none could hit the target.
O’Dowda’s debut would last only 35 minutes – enough to see signs of his ball-carrying ability, sharpness of turn and elusiveness with his slight build and nippy style. Fellow left footer Jonny Smith, his replacement, looks in a similar mould.
City’s second would follow just a minute before the interval. A little piece of skill from Tomlin freed himself from two defenders before he found the rampaging Bryan, who again got his delivery right – this time for Kodjia to meet with a clinical header back across the stranded Krysiak.
The anticipated flurry of half-time changes duly followed – seven in total from a City perspective – while Yeovil boss Way waited until the 58th minute to change his entire team.
Unfortunately, none of the 11 substitutes were listed on the teamsheet as many were trialists.
By this point the hosts had halved the deficit courtesy of an impressive strike from Eaves, who connected sweetly with an acrobatic volley to convert Ryan Dickson’s cross just moments before Way unleashed his new-look line-up.
Johnson’s team included Swedish trialist Samuel Armenteros, a free agent who made his name in Dutch football before spending last season at Qarabag in Azerbaijan, where he won the league and cup double.
Whether going for goal or not, Armenteros struck the same lick of paint that had denied Yeovil’s Lacey when his delicate chip just did not quite drop quickly enough to find the net.
Much of the game’s competitive edge had ebbed away by the time the clock ticked down, but a third goal for the visitors was looking more likely than a Yeovil equaliser.
Luke Freeman drilled a low shot wide but not wide enough to find the lurking Kieran Agard, and when the ball dropped to Josh Brownhill near the penalty spot he looked odds-on to open his City account only to send his shot flashing past the post.
Arnold Garita might have added some gloss to the scoreline late on, but fluffed his lines in attempting to chip the Yeovil keeper with a clean route to goal.
Bristol City: O’Donnell, Little (Ayling 46), Flint, Williams (Vyner 85), Bryan (Golbourne 46), O’Neil (Brownhill 46), Pack, O’Dowda (Smith 35, Armenteros 46), Reid (Freeman 46), Tomlin (Agard 46, Garita 85), Kodjia (Wilbraham 46).
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