‘Lack of intensity, a night to forget’ - Bristol City player ratings from their dismal Carabao Cup exit

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How the Robins fared in their midweek defeat

Bristol City suffered a shock Carabao Cup exit as they were defeated 3-1 to League One Lincoln City in the third round at Ashton Gate on Tuesday night.

A long-range strike from Matty Virtue and a calm finish from Ben House, following a mistake from Joe Low, gave the visitors the lead at halftime.

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Paudie O’Connor extended Mark Kennedy’s sides lead four minutes into the second half, before Tommy Conway pulled a goal back late on.

The Imps progress to the last 16 where they could face Premier League opposition, while the Robins drop out of the competition.

Story of the match:

The visitors enjoyed the lion's share of possession early on, as the Robins struggled to get their team press right with several new personnel in the side.

The Imps’ positive start paid off when they took the lead after seven minutes. Sean Roughan worked the ball up the left-hand side nicely and passed to Virtue 25-yards out.

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Virtue had all the time in the world, took a touch out of his feet and fired a fierce right-footed strike into Stefan Bajic’s right-hand corner.

Things didn’t get much better for Nigel Pearson’s side, and they were two down after 15 minutes.

Last man Low was dispossessed easily by House 40-yards out, the striker then drove at goal and despite pressure from Timm Klose, slotted coolly to the left of Bajic.

The goal was met by heavy boos from the home fans, as Pearson immediately sent out Alex Scott to warm up.

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Without playing much better, the Robins had a golden chance to pull a goal back in the 24th minute.

Andi Weimann slid Antoine Semenyo through, but the Ghanaian shot glaringly wide from inside the box, which summed up his run of no goals in 12 games.

The home side controlled the ball until the break, but a lack of intensity, movement and quality saw them create very little.

Pearson reacted to what was a nightmare 45 minutes of football by making three half-time changes: Low, Klose and Sykes off for Conway, Joe Williams and Zak Vyner. The Robins also switched to a back four.

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The formation change did not have the desired effect, and it was 3-0 four minutes into the second half.

Charles Vernam’s free kick bounced around in the box, bundled off the post and was nodded in by O’Connor from a yard out.

O’Connor was involved again up the other end moments later when he cleared Conway’s effort off the line.

Conway did pull a goal back 10 minutes from time, following a cross from Scott, and the comeback was nearly on, but Chris Martin could only steer Conway’s cross wide from five yards out.

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The home side upped the tempo in the final few minutes, but the Imps then saw the game out comfortably - a night to forget for the Robins.

Player ratings:

Stefan Bajic – 5

Was beaten by a good strike but was a nice height for him. Could do little about the second goal. Had nothing to do other than pick the ball out of his net first half. Made a good stop from House at 3-0.

Joe Low – 4

A night to forget for the youngster. Dispossessed easily by House for the visitors’ second goal. Lost the ball numerous times when under little pressure and booked when he caught House following a sloppy touch on the halfway line. Subbed at halftime.

Timm Klose – 5

Tried to put House off for his goal but couldn’t. Didn’t make any glaring errors but wasteful on the ball. Subbed at halftime.

Rob Atkinson – 6

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Didn’t make any mistakes but couldn’t travel forward with the ball like he normally does.

Mark Sykes – 5

Beaten by the ball in behind him too often. Wasteful crosses. Subbed at halftime.

Andy King – 5

A lack of intensity and organisation out of possession. Provided no control on the ball and didn’t dictate the play at all.

Dylan Kadji – 5

Lacked intensity and pressing, not busy enough. Started to get on the ball a bit more when the Robins were two down.

Jay Dasilva – 4

Made a couple of crosses but was largely uninvolved.

Andi Weimann – 5

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Couldn’t get into the game first half. Had more of the ball in the second period.

Antoine Semenyo – 5

Hassled and was a threat in behind. Missed a massive chance to make it 2-1 when he shot wide from inside the area. Caught offside unnecessarily too many times.

Chris Martin –4

Was a passenger throughout the first 45. Got a little more involved after the break but sloppy on the ball.

Joe Williams (subbed on for Klose, 46’) – 6

Got the play flowing a bit better in the second half and provided some control in the middle.

Tommy Conway (subbed on for Sykes, 46’) – 7

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Was a bright spark when he came on, the only player to trouble the visiting defence. Scored a late consolation goal.

Zak Vyner (subbed on for Low, 46’) – 6

Gave a silly free kick away moments after coming on, which led to the Imps’ third goal.

Alex Scott (subbed on for Scott, 54’) – 6

Tried to make things happen and crossed for Conway’s goal.

Nahki Wells (subbed on for Atkinson, 77’) - N/A

Tried to create in the final third.

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