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City v Coventry City (EFL1 -15:00 Saturday) - What can we expect?


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It’s back!  Ready for the first game of the season.

Usual format, albeit Bristol City Live have chosen to publish it this week.

Coventry City: [Saturday 12th September – 15:00] – What can we expect?

 The Sky Blues travel down from the East Midlands for the first EFL Championship match of the season.  Having won a curtailed League One title last season, they are working their way back up through the leagues having gone from the Premier League in 2001 down to League Two in 2017.  They’d previously spent 34 years in the topflight, winning the FA Cup in 1987.  Currently sharing Birmingham’s St. Andrews stadium following a long running dispute with the owners of their previous ground – the Ricoh Arena.  It seems a long time ago that I went to Highfield Road to watch them play Spurs and sat in the players bar next to Keith Waugh!

 Manager:

 They are managed by ex-Bristol City loanee Mark Robins (below).  Many thought he might be in the frame for the City job this summer having been in with a shout previously too.

FE731EE8-9E6C-4DD2-B20D-2948A39098D2.thumb.jpeg.291cbb5f88e53e422441b42edd95f92a.jpeg

 The ex-Manchester United and Norwich City striker has previously managed Rotherham, Barnsley, Huddersfield and Scunthorpe, with this being his second stint at Coventry (returning in 2017), and now has two promotions to his name in three seasons.  Last season’s promotion was based on being hard to beat, and although they played really nice football, they weren’t heavy scorers.

195E6DA0-2B97-4E93-BB1F-56E7588AB0F2.jpeg.ee2655da4121961dfd3f9249a5568557.jpeg

 Formation / System:

 Coventry also play a back 3 and wingbacks, but rather than a 352, they tend to play a 3421 “Box”, with two holding midfielders and two more attacking midfielders.  They haven’t deviated from this judging by last weekend’s EFL Cup win at MK Dons (1-0), although they had to shuffle the pack following Drysdale’s red card after 27 minutes.

F56F5F73-3709-4374-96E7-114AF5FEA6E5.thumb.jpeg.fea654c929e0258b3c18ec561798bee7.jpeg

 They tended to play a more passing game versus League One opponents, going long much less than most teams.  They were in the top 5 for several of the shorter passing metrics and generally patient in their approach, and top for overall passes and progressive passes (through the lines).  One of the reasons for this was the stellar season had by our own Liam Walsh who spent the season on loan at the Sky Blues, winning Player of the Season.  

 Recruitment:

 Coventry are a team that use data analytics heavily in their recruitment and look to have had a good summer as they tackle a higher division.  Questions will remain how they cope without Walsh, and how their defence will cope with heavier opposition possession and a quicker tempo especially in transition.  Reminds me a bit of the situation we found ourselves in 2015/16, where we were like rabbits in the headlights against brutal counter attacking opponents, who sucked us forward and then hit us on the break.

 

Arrivals of note:

§  Gustavo Hamer – PEC Zwolle (Holland) for £1.35m

§  Callum O’Hare – Aston Villa (returning on loan)

§  Ryan Giles – Wolves (returning on loan)

§  Leo Ostigard – Brighton (Loan)

§  Ben Sheaf – Arsenal (loan)

§  Marcel Hilßner – Paderborn (Germany)

§  Tyler Walker – Nottingham Forest for £1.00m

 They’ve not lost anyone of note, although Zain Westbrooke has moved to our “friends in the north” and not long ago the ex-Brentford man was linked with us.

 Line-up:

 GK: Marco Marosi (26) – ex-Doncaster stopper who signed last summer, and was an ever-present in the league, conceding just 30 goals in 34 appearances

 RWB: Josh Pask (22) – free transfer who arrived from West Ham last summer having been on loan at Gillingham.  Usually Fankaty Dabo (24) plays here as Pask is a CB.  Dabo had a great season last season after arriving on a free from Chelsea, having done the usual Vitesse loan too!  Has been injured during pre-season returning on Tuesday, so might be too soon on Saturday.

 RCB: Leo Ostigard (20) – Norway u21 international, signed on loan from Brighton having been at Molde.  Has been away with Norway but with Drysdale’s suspension, is expected to make his debut.  Very good aerially, was 4th in 2. Bundesliga last year for aerial duels, having been on loan at St. Pauli.

 CB: Dominic Hyam (24) – Scottish u21 international who arrived in the summer of 2017 from Reading.  Now made over 100 appearances for the club.  Michael Rose (24) is still recovering from injury and has been linked with City in the past.  Key player for them last season, probably a game too soon for him.

 LCB: Kyle McFadzean (33) – experienced, old fashioned centre-back who puts his body on the line.  Former non-league partner to Flint and regular opponent of City at Crawley, Burton and MK Dons.  Remember Kodjia booting him off the ball when the ref wasn’t looking in 15/16 season!

 LWB: Ryan Giles (20) – Wolves youngster returning on loan.  Previously at Shrewsbury (loan) and he ripped us apart at Ashton Gate in the FA Cup last season.  England u20 international so well known to Downing.  My choice as opposition DANGERMAN (below).

DF166644-25E9-430B-B964-35AEC3E7D207.thumb.jpeg.fa63e53cc803619b118479279b73e758.jpeg

 CM: Gustavo Hamer (23) – born in Brazil, a former Dutch u20 international signed from PEC Zwolle in this window.  Big reputation having been part of the Feyenoord youth set up, initially breaking through on loan at FC Dordrecht.  Let’s see if he can fill Liam Walsh’s boots!

 CM: Jordan Shipley (22) – Irish u21 international who’s come through the ranks.  Over 100 appearances and played decent roles in both promotions, especially last season when Bayliss went to PNE.  Possible starter is ex-City man Liam Kelly (30).  Left City for Oldham in a swap with Korey Smith.

 AM: Jamie Allen (25) – former Rochdale and Burton man, with close to 250 career appearances to his name.  looked a real prospect at Rochdale in 14/15 but had injuries.  Combative, but can play.  Might miss out for summer signing Marcel Hilßner (25), who’s arrived from Paderborn.

 AM: Callum O’Hare (22) – another u20 international known to Keith Downing.  Returning on loan from Aston Villa who featured 29 times in the 34 league matches, and 11 more in cups.  Can play in a variety of advanced positions.

 CF: Matt Godden (29) – journeyman striker, who has travelled the lower league before arriving at Peterborough at 26, scoring 14 in 29, prompting a £750k move to Coventry last summer.  15 more goals last season, earning him the club’s top scorer award.  His place may be at risk from Tyler Walker (23), son of Des, and the man I tipped City to go after this summer.  Signed from Forest in this window he’s had good scoring seasons at Mansfield and Lincoln, notching the winner on debut last weekend v MK Dons.  Also, as an option from the bench as a target man is Amadou Bakayoko (24) formerly of Walsall.  Not a heavy scorer but a useful foil for either Walker or Godden.

 How do we win?

 Never easy taking on a promoted side first up, but at least City have had one competitive fixture to remove any rustiness.  I’m sure Liam Walsh has been assisting Holden with some inside information, even if he won’t be out on the pitch for this game as he recovers from a quad injury.

 It will be interesting to see how City cope with Coventry’s box midfield especially if their two advanced midfielders press our outside centre-backs.  However, if that happens then we should have more numbers in midfield, so can use that to break through the first press.

 Experience could be another factor, not just age, as Coventry are a young side, but Championship experience too.  McFadzean is the only player with any real experience at this level.  City have just added over 800 games worth of Championship (and above) experience in the past week in Chris Brunt, Alfie Mawson and Chris Martin.

 Prediction:

 A tight affair for 55-60 minutes, but City’s class to see them pull through.

 Bristol City 2 : 0 Coventry City

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Very good post, reckon city will get a 2-1 win tomorrow

Coventry are a decent side but Walsh was a massive part of that and we should have enough quality from our starting lineup/subs to get us over the line

Hopefully we see the new signings get some minutes tomorrow, we got a strong squad now so we should set our sights on a solid play off push and the best way to kick it off is 3 points in our first league game

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20 minutes ago, Baba Yaga said:

Surprised that their goals tally was the lowest from any of the top 6 in league one considering the finished 1st. Interesting to see about the type of game they will try to play.

I will be positive and also say 2-1 City.

3F1C6565-0CF3-46C5-AC8F-24D9B6AA6839.thumb.jpeg.a4af5b80f7e8e7b593a8cb5c964022c9.jpeg

they outperformed their xG (and xG conceded too).

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@Davefevsgood write up - interesting if we’ll see promoted clubs having a ‘bounce’ in the league this year. With Coventry not having played competitively since March and our season only recently finishing whether the momentum of promotion will be such a factor ?

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Enjoy reading these Fevs. Good work. 

I think it'll be a tough one today and I'm a little nervous that midfield injuries to Walsh and Williams plus our new signings still a little behind in match fitness means we could be a little short of what we can expect from City.

Also going to be interesting to see how Holden and the coaching team motivate and set the instructions.  Still finding their feet competitively so I'm going for a tough 1-1 (and the usual OTIB meltdown after 5 minutes).

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Good read as always !

I'm sure Cov do have the feel good factor, but our experience at this level, new players, and "new" manager bounce will see us through

Tight game, I'll have us 1-0 Wells in the second half

Nice to see Cov on the way back. It's been an awful time for their fans. 

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Sorry Dave, but got to pick you up on something here. I didn’t get past the first line.

Coventry, East Midlands???

Some people may think such things don’t matter, but as a native of Leicester it’s bad enough being associated with Derby. Coventry would be a step too far! 

I do hope your research on the rest of the article was more thorough! 🤣

 

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21 minutes ago, lager loud said:

Sorry Dave, but got to pick you up on something here. I didn’t get past the first line.

Coventry, East Midlands???

Some people may think such things don’t matter, but as a native of Leicester it’s bad enough being associated with Derby. Coventry would be a step too far! 

I do hope your research on the rest of the article was more thorough! 🤣

 

Northern pedant 😂😂😂

Just as well I wasn’t the navigator to Villa!!!

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Didn't Coventry have a record (obviously broken now with their promotion) of something like 20 odd consecutive seasons without a finish in the top 6 of any division. 

I'm sure I remember hearing a commentator saying something like that a few years ago.

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Some quotes from Gregor’s presser:

@Robbored

Have you chosen your permanent captain yet?

Yes, I have. I've made that decision.

Have you told the squad? 

The public will find out tomorrow; I don't want to give the team away. Obviously I don't want to say who it is as I don't want to give our opposition an idea as to who might be playing or who might not be. I've made my mind up, a while back to be honest, and you'll see tomorrow.

@JonDolman

On Callum O'Dowda, how do you see him? We've seen him playing down the left more in pre-season games - is that how you view him? 

What's Callum good at? He's got fantastic physical attributes, first and foremost, in terms of his aerobic capacity to be able to get about the pitch for long distances. He's very quick and he's a good player out in that wide position. So yes, left wing-back is a position where I see him, definitely. 

I think he can also play off the right-hand side if we were going for it in an attacking sense with wing backs. One of those high midfield positions - I think he can play in those as well. So he's got a few strings to his bow but definitely that left wing-back position is a position that would suit him. 

Han-Noah Massengo was playing last week - was he called up to the France u20s or u19s but decided not to play? 

There's no real news there; they had a training camp at Clairefontaine but with no matches. The Government policy is that if you're going away for an elite event or game, you can come back into the country without quarantining. 

As it was, France didn't have any games - it was a training camp - and he would have had to have quarantined when he came back. So we spoke with him and we made the decision for him to stay in Bristol. 

 

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3 minutes ago, Davefevs said:

On Callum O'Dowda, how do you see him? We've seen him playing down the left more in pre-season games - is that how you view him? 

What's Callum good at?

 

I think I would have left it as an open question.

Hopefully those two new coaches bought a clue stick with them & have spend the last three weeks beating COD with it. You'll know it'll be a good season when COD forces his way into the starting line up and stays there, with arguments and accusations flying around on the forum with posters saying such things as 'I always said that he was a fantastic player ' and 'hope we can keep hold of him in the January transfer window'

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3 hours ago, Matthew me said:

Good read as always !

I'm sure Cov do have the feel good factor, but our experience at this level, new players, and "new" manager bounce will see us through

Tight game, I'll have us 1-0 Wells in the second half

Nice to see Cov on the way back. It's been an awful time for their fans. 

Coventry won’t have come up against the quality of Wells & Fam so providing we take our chances then I’m fairly confident we will take the points today 

Hopefully the experience of Mawson & Kalas can keep it tight and form a formidable back 3 with Moore 

They will miss Walsh but they look to have recruited well and of the 3 promoted teams I think they will be ok this season and stay up 

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On 11/09/2020 at 12:47, Davefevs said:

It’s back!  Ready for the first game of the season.

Usual format, albeit Bristol City Live have chosen to publish it this week.

 

Coventry City: [Saturday 12th September – 15:00] – What can we expect?

 The Sky Blues travel down from the East Midlands for the first EFL Championship match of the season.  Having won a curtailed League One title last season, they are working their way back up through the leagues having gone from the Premier League in 2001 down to League Two in 2017.  They’d previously spent 34 years in the topflight, winning the FA Cup in 1987.  Currently sharing Birmingham’s St. Andrews stadium following a long running dispute with the owners of their previous ground – the Ricoh Arena.  It seems a long time ago that I went to Highfield Road to watch them play Spurs and sat in the players bar next to Keith Waugh!

 Manager:

 They are managed by ex-Bristol City loanee Mark Robins (below).  Many thought he might be in the frame for the City job this summer having been in with a shout previously too.

FE731EE8-9E6C-4DD2-B20D-2948A39098D2.thumb.jpeg.291cbb5f88e53e422441b42edd95f92a.jpeg

 The ex-Manchester United and Norwich City striker has previously managed Rotherham, Barnsley, Huddersfield and Scunthorpe, with this being his second stint at Coventry (returning in 2017), and now has two promotions to his name in three seasons.  Last season’s promotion was based on being hard to beat, and although they played really nice football, they weren’t heavy scorers.

195E6DA0-2B97-4E93-BB1F-56E7588AB0F2.jpeg.ee2655da4121961dfd3f9249a5568557.jpeg

 Formation / System:

 Coventry also play a back 3 and wingbacks, but rather than a 352, they tend to play a 3421 “Box”, with two holding midfielders and two more attacking midfielders.  They haven’t deviated from this judging by last weekend’s EFL Cup win at MK Dons (1-0), although they had to shuffle the pack following Drysdale’s red card after 27 minutes.

F56F5F73-3709-4374-96E7-114AF5FEA6E5.thumb.jpeg.fea654c929e0258b3c18ec561798bee7.jpeg

 They tended to play a more passing game versus League One opponents, going long much less than most teams.  They were in the top 5 for several of the shorter passing metrics and generally patient in their approach, and top for overall passes and progressive passes (through the lines).  One of the reasons for this was the stellar season had by our own Liam Walsh who spent the season on loan at the Sky Blues, winning Player of the Season.  

 Recruitment:

 Coventry are a team that use data analytics heavily in their recruitment and look to have had a good summer as they tackle a higher division.  Questions will remain how they cope without Walsh, and how their defence will cope with heavier opposition possession and a quicker tempo especially in transition.  Reminds me a bit of the situation we found ourselves in 2015/16, where we were like rabbits in the headlights against brutal counter attacking opponents, who sucked us forward and then hit us on the break.

 

Arrivals of note:

§  Gustavo Hamer – PEC Zwolle (Holland) for £1.35m

§  Callum O’Hare – Aston Villa (returning on loan)

§  Ryan Giles – Wolves (returning on loan)

§  Leo Ostigard – Brighton (Loan)

§  Ben Sheaf – Arsenal (loan)

§  Marcel Hilßner – Paderborn (Germany)

§  Tyler Walker – Nottingham Forest for £1.00m

 They’ve not lost anyone of note, although Zain Westbrooke has moved to our “friends in the north” and not long ago the ex-Brentford man was linked with us.

 Line-up:

 GK: Marco Marosi (26) – ex-Doncaster stopper who signed last summer, and was an ever-present in the league, conceding just 30 goals in 34 appearances

 RWB: Josh Pask (22) – free transfer who arrived from West Ham last summer having been on loan at Gillingham.  Usually Fankaty Dabo (24) plays here as Pask is a CB.  Dabo had a great season last season after arriving on a free from Chelsea, having done the usual Vitesse loan too!  Has been injured during pre-season returning on Tuesday, so might be too soon on Saturday.

 RCB: Leo Ostigard (20) – Norway u21 international, signed on loan from Brighton having been at Molde.  Has been away with Norway but with Drysdale’s suspension, is expected to make his debut.  Very good aerially, was 4th in 2. Bundesliga last year for aerial duels, having been on loan at St. Pauli.

 CB: Dominic Hyam (24) – Scottish u21 international who arrived in the summer of 2017 from Reading.  Now made over 100 appearances for the club.  Michael Rose (24) is still recovering from injury and has been linked with City in the past.  Key player for them last season, probably a game too soon for him.

 LCB: Kyle McFadzean (33) – experienced, old fashioned centre-back who puts his body on the line.  Former non-league partner to Flint and regular opponent of City at Crawley, Burton and MK Dons.  Remember Kodjia booting him off the ball when the ref wasn’t looking in 15/16 season!

 LWB: Ryan Giles (20) – Wolves youngster returning on loan.  Previously at Shrewsbury (loan) and he ripped us apart at Ashton Gate in the FA Cup last season.  England u20 international so well known to Downing.  My choice as opposition DANGERMAN (below).

DF166644-25E9-430B-B964-35AEC3E7D207.thumb.jpeg.fa63e53cc803619b118479279b73e758.jpeg

 CM: Gustavo Hamer (23) – born in Brazil, a former Dutch u20 international signed from PEC Zwolle in this window.  Big reputation having been part of the Feyenoord youth set up, initially breaking through on loan at FC Dordrecht.  Let’s see if he can fill Liam Walsh’s boots!

 CM: Jordan Shipley (22) – Irish u21 international who’s come through the ranks.  Over 100 appearances and played decent roles in both promotions, especially last season when Bayliss went to PNE.  Possible starter is ex-City man Liam Kelly (30).  Left City for Oldham in a swap with Korey Smith.

 AM: Jamie Allen (25) – former Rochdale and Burton man, with close to 250 career appearances to his name.  looked a real prospect at Rochdale in 14/15 but had injuries.  Combative, but can play.  Might miss out for summer signing Marcel Hilßner (25), who’s arrived from Paderborn.

 AM: Callum O’Hare (22) – another u20 international known to Keith Downing.  Returning on loan from Aston Villa who featured 29 times in the 34 league matches, and 11 more in cups.  Can play in a variety of advanced positions.

 CF: Matt Godden (29) – journeyman striker, who has travelled the lower league before arriving at Peterborough at 26, scoring 14 in 29, prompting a £750k move to Coventry last summer.  15 more goals last season, earning him the club’s top scorer award.  His place may be at risk from Tyler Walker (23), son of Des, and the man I tipped City to go after this summer.  Signed from Forest in this window he’s had good scoring seasons at Mansfield and Lincoln, notching the winner on debut last weekend v MK Dons.  Also, as an option from the bench as a target man is Amadou Bakayoko (24) formerly of Walsall.  Not a heavy scorer but a useful foil for either Walker or Godden.

 How do we win?

 Never easy taking on a promoted side first up, but at least City have had one competitive fixture to remove any rustiness.  I’m sure Liam Walsh has been assisting Holden with some inside information, even if he won’t be out on the pitch for this game as he recovers from a quad injury.

 It will be interesting to see how City cope with Coventry’s box midfield especially if their two advanced midfielders press our outside centre-backs.  However, if that happens then we should have more numbers in midfield, so can use that to break through the first press.

 Experience could be another factor, not just age, as Coventry are a young side, but Championship experience too.  McFadzean is the only player with any real experience at this level.  City have just added over 800 games worth of Championship (and above) experience in the past week in Chris Brunt, Alfie Mawson and Chris Martin.

 Prediction:

 A tight affair for 55-60 minutes, but City’s class to see them pull through.

 Bristol City 2 : 0 Coventry City

Condensed Version 

We're playing Coventry

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