Bristol City player ratings as Conway and Atkinson give Robins derby delight over Cardiff
How the Robins players fared as they put a shift in to defeat their opponents from across the Severn Bridge
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Tommy Conway opened the scoring for the Robins before Rob Atkinson made sure of City’s second consecutive victory of the campaign.
Nigel Pearson’s side shoot up to seventh position leapfrogging Cardiff as they now turn their attention to the Carabao Cup clash with Wycombe Wanderers on Wednesday.
Tale of the game
Cardiff were dealt a blow early on in the match as their left-back Joel Bagan collided with Alex Scott, which forced him off with former Rangers defender Jack Simpson sent on in his place.
Tommy Conway almost installed life into an otherwise stop-start few moments as Jay Dasilva fed him in but Ryan Allsop denied him as he tried to tuck his shot away with Weimann missing on the rebound.
City had the ball in the net but it was swiftly disallowed as Han-Noah Massengo was adjudged to have fouled Ryan Allsop from Andi Weimann’s cross.
The home side’s game plan was working defensively as Callum O’Dowda was forced to change side after Alex Scott had conducted himself well in the wing-back position.
On the half-hour mark, Cardiff had their first opportunity as Romaine Sawyers’ far-angled shot was tipped onto the post by Daniel Bentley.
Max Watters then followed that up as a ball over-the-top evaded the City defence but Bentley was able to deflect it over the bar by blocking with his body.
Pressure mounted from the away side as Cedric Kipre bundled over a City player before hitting the side netting.
Against the run-of-play, Bristol City went in front through their man-of-the-moment Conway. A cross from Nahki Wells was delivered in and Conway was able to direct his header goalwards.
Almost getting a quick-fire second, Weimann’s half-volley cannoned off of the crossbar with City taking the game by the scruff.
In stoppage-time, Cardiff had the ball in the net as Ojo tapped home from O’Dowda’s cross but the linesman was quick to show the offside flag, which allowed City to take a one-goal lead into the break.
Emerging from the dressing rooms, the hosts looked strong on the counter-attack and for a split second, the home fans thought Jay Dasilva had scored from Weimman’s cross but he hit the side netting.
A second goal followed for City just after the hour mark. Rob Atkinson escaped the Cardiff defence and headed home from a Kal Naismith free-kick.
City had a few half opportunities but couldn’t breach Allsop’s goal for a third time but they were able to completely thwart Cardiff’s attack, despite their changes.
Daniel Bentley - 8
The City skipper made himself look big to put off Watters when the Cardiff striker was played in, which was a pivotal moment, as City were able to hold on and then go in front. Another moment is where he was able to take the ball away from Mark Harris’ feet to stop him going round him for an assured performance.
Zak Vyner - 8
The defender when receiving the ball was slightly wasteful with it, launching it long rather than going to his teammates and a few home fans could be heard groaning. He was later shown a yellow card by the referee from a City throw-in. As the game went on he grew in confidence and closed out the Cardiff threat.
Kal Naismith - 8
His delivery from corners was questionable but for his free-kick it was spot on as he was right on the money to find Rob Atkinson. Did superb defensively when Cardiff rang the attacking changes.
Rob Atkinson - 8
A real centre-back’s header for his goal as he and many of his teammates outwitted the Cardiff defence and he headed home with no chance for the Cardiff goalkeeper.
Alex Scott - 8
Celebrating his 19th-birthday, Scott had the task of filling in at wing-back in the enforced absence of Mark Sykes. Scott did well coping with both O’Dowda and Ojo.
Joe Williams - 8
Cardiff had started with a midfield three which could have outnumebered City but Williams alongside Massengo did a number on Ryan Wintle and Andy Rinomhota whilst Sawyers was reduced to passenger status.
Han-Noah Massengo - 9
The French midfielder was right up for it and was doing both his defensive and attacking duties correctly. For a moment, City fans thought he scored his first goal for the club but his push on Allsop was deemed to be a foul. Issued a yellow card for having to make a cynical tackle on a Cardiff breakaway. One of the best performances that Massengo has delivered in a City shirt.
Jay Dasilva - 8
A lot of Cardiff’s chances came through Dasilva’s side with the wing-back being caught out a few times. He wasn’t needed as much in attack but did what was needed.
Andi Weimann - 8
The Austrian played the supporting role he was accustomed to last season and he was enjoying it. He got some luck down the flanks, hitting the crossbar whilst also setting up his opponents.
Nahki Wells - 8
An assist for Conway’s goal shows the early signings of a new strike partnership being formed, which could be devastating for Championship defenders.
Tommy Conway - 9
The man of the moment right now with the world at his feet. Had City’s first real chance which he did well to get him in the position for. Broke the deadlock with an experienced striker’s headed finish. After his goal, Cardiff began to target him and trying to roughen him up.
Chris Martin (subbed on for Tommy Conway, 79) - 6
Almost earned a penalty with Cedric Kipre all over him but the referee deemed it fair. Not enough time to add more to the match.
Andy King (subbed on for Joe Williams, 83) - 6
Brought on to give Williams a breather whilst keeping that solidity in the centre of the pitch. He did just that and frustrated the opposition.
Kane Wilson (subbed on for Han-Noah Massengo, 86) - 6
Almost set up Nahki Wells for a goal as he outwitted Jack Simpson.
Timm Klose (subbed on for Nahki Wells, 90+3 - 6
Brought on to run down the clock and sure things up in defence.