COVENTRY CITY 1-0 BRISTOL CITY
MON DEC 26TH AT The Ricoh Arena, Coventry
City: Murphy, Keogh, Wood, Christie (McPake 85), Hussey (Cameron 46), Bell, McSheffrey, Thomas, Baker, Bigirimana (Deegan 46), Jutkiewicz. SNU Burge, Jeffers.
Bristol City: James. Wilson, Skuse, Nyatanga, McGivern, Kilkenny (Pittman 67), Elliott, Cisse (Campbell-Ryce 85), Pearson,. Adomah, Maynard (Stead 67). SNU Carey, Gerken
HT CCFC 0-0 BCFC FT CCFC 1-0 BCFC ATT 15,302
Referee Phil Gibbs. Assts Rob Merchant and David Plowright.
Booked – Deegan, Cisse
Goal – Gary Deegan (71)
Man Of The Match – Richard Wood took the votes with nominations for Keogh, Thomas, Bell and Baker.
CITY SUPPORT: Considering the lack of public transport in Coventry, there was an excellent turn out of City supporters.
CITY TEAM NEWS
With Gary Gardner back at Aston Villa after his loan ended, Andy Thorn was always going to make changes and brought in birthday boy Carl Baker with Gael Bigirimana replacing the injured Clive Platt. Chris Dunn failed a pre-game fitness test and Lee Burge was again the sub keeper, on the bench with Gary Deegan and James McPake.
More Ex Directors than current ones at the Ricoh Arena today. Current Directors were John Clarke, Tim Fisher and Finance Director Gary Ambrose.
Also, spotted going into the ground, were Ray Ranson, Gary Hoffman, Joe Elliott and Richard Keys. PL Boss Richard Scudamore was also in attendance.
Coventry City provided their supporters with some much needed Christmas cheer with a 1-0 victory over Bristol City at the Ricoh Arena.
On a not too bad Boxing Day, many City supporters were forced to walk or cadge lifts to the Ricoh Arena due to a lack of public transport in the city, and those who made it into the ground, saw Andy Thorn fulfil his promise of trying to try something different when he fielded a 4-5-1 formation due to Lukas Jutkiewicz being the only fit striker for this six pointer.
Coventry were up against a Bristol City side which has improved of late, thanks to their new manager Derek McInnes, a man some would like to have seen take over the Sky Blues before Andy Thorn was appointed and could have been a goal down in 53 seconds when the pacy Albert Adomah fired into the side netting.
The 1600 Bristol City fans were screaming for a penalty, eight minutes later, when Adomah went down under a heavy challenge from Richard Wood. However, we were a lot closer than the visiting supporters and could see that Wood got the ball first and it was a superb tackle.
In the 20th minute, the Sky Blues mounted a good attack and Carl Baker was on the end of a cross from the left but sent it just the wrong side of the post.
Having survived a penalty claim when McSheffrey who worked very hard today especially in the second half, went down and a corner, Bristol City started to pile on the pressure.
On the half hour mark, Nicky Maynard had got past Murphy but could not get past Keogh who was on the line to concede a corner which was followed by two more in quick succession.
Richard Keogh has been in good form this season and he made two great blocks with one from Wood to see City going in all square at the break.
The rain came down for the second half and saw some of the City support having to move towards the rear of the stands to get away from the wet stuff as Thorn sent on Gary Deegan for Bigirimana and Nathan Cameron on for the injured Chris Hussey.
Thorn changed the formation as well, switching to 4-4-2 with McSheffrey going up front with Jutkiewicz for a bit.
Deegan, who appears to have kissed and made up with his manager after a spat last week, was told to make an impact and did so within three minutes, being cautioned for a heavy challenge which led to the visitors nearly scoring from the resulting free kick.
The City supporters were brought to life by firstly David James punching away a corner and secondly Bell heading wide and the noise level and support for the team continued throughout the half.
Cyrus Christie and David Bell started to attack more as more and more of the play was at the CT Stand which the Sky Blues attacked for the second half.
Two corners were won before David Bell and Gary McSheffrey from the same spot on the left hand side of the penalty area, fired over.
Bristol City made a double change with former City loanee Jon Stead coming on but today Joe Murphy was not getting beat and he dived to push away a 69th minute good run and shot by Adomah.
Then in the 71st minute, the City supporters were spreading the Christmas cheer big time when the Sky Blues had a free kick and the ball fell for Gary Deegan to rile past former England keeper David James from fifteen yards.
The goal had been coming but the visitors still looked like they did not want to lose their unbeaten record at the Ricoh Arena and Joe Murphy had to make two cracking saves to keep City in it.
As “Go For It City” rang out from Singers Corner, Deegan got in a shot at the other end before Jutkiewicz who lead his line well fired over.
Cyrus Christie was forced off with cramp late on, bringing a rare outing for James McPake and Murphy made another good save from Marvin Elliott as City delighted in their first win since October 15th.