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Bristol City urged to start fast against Fulham

last updated Saturday 24th September 2016, 9:08 AM


Leyton Orient coach Andy Hessenthaler
Lee Johnson Head Coach
Bristol City
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Bristol City Head Coach Lee Johnson is urging his players to start fast against Fulham in Saturday's Championship showdown at Craven Cottage.

Bristol City have become adept at scoring late goals to win or draw games this season, a habit that has yielded them eight additional points in the English second tier and earned them EFL Cup victories at Scunthorpe and Fulham.

But having seen his side snatch last-minute goals in each of their last two games, City's head coach would like to see the Robins impose themselves from the very outset on their return to West London.

"I think the challenge is can we do both?" said Johnson. "We need to play on the front foot from the start and show Fulham that we have come to play.

"It will be interesting to see how many points we would have if you took out the last ten minutes of all our games. I might work that out at some point. At the same time, it would be nice to score a goal in the first ten minutes."

City have come from behind to win or draw on five occasions already this season and Johnson attributes this new-found ability to bounce back from adversity to a variety of factors.

He added: "It's great for the fans that we are still in every game, even if we are one or two down with 20 minutes to go, because they know we are going to come good and that keeps their spirits up. It is a positive trait and it is probably down to character, youth, fitness and grinding the opposition down with the way we like to play.

"Tactically, our substitutions have gone really well, because we have options and a stronger bench, but we need to start games better.

"It's great to have the clubs in your bag, to be able to bring people on and change a game, which is something the club did not have last year. That has been a big plus for us at the end of games and we now need to work towards dominating games for 90 minutes."

City may have beaten Fulham 2-1 in an EFL Cup tie at Craven Cottage on Wednesday, but Johnson does not expect that outcome to have any bearing on the re-match.

He explained: "It will be two changed sides playing in front of a much bigger crowd in a league game, which always brings a completely different dynamic and more intensity as far as the pressure is concerned."

Having seen his side win on two previous visits to the Cottage this year, City's head coach believes the Robins will be boosted by a feel-good factor on Saturday.

Recalling last-gasp winning goals from Lee Tomlin and Tammy Abraham in March and midweek respectively, City's head coach said: "We're taking more than 2,500 fans and that memory will be there for all of them, whether it's an emotional memory or a muscle memory. They are going to a place that makes them feel good straight away.

"We've had two last-minute winners, the players are in credit with the fans and we want to make sure we send them home happy again.

"But we have to be careful, because will have that little edge that says 'you are not coming back on our patch and doing what you did to us in the last two games. We have to guard against that and we have to be physical so we can play on the front foot."























Source A Stockhausen at Bristol Post

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