Bristol City player ratings v Southampton: 'Faultless' 9/10 scored and several 8s as 25-match unbeaten run crushed

Bristol City 3-1 Southampton

Bristol City ended Southampton's 25-match unbeaten run as they ran out comfortable 3-1 winners at Ashton Gate on Tuesday.

Sam Bell, Rob Dickie and Harry Cornick netted the goals in the second period, as City ran riot and inflicted a first defeat since September on Russell Martin's side.

Adam Armstrong pulled a goal back from the penalty spot in stoppage time, but it was not nearly enough.

The victory sees the Robins move up to 11th place, just four points off the play-off places.

As expected, the visitors made a quick start to the match and dominated possession in the early stages.

Some sharp thinking from Joe Williams, though, almost carved out an opening goal for the Robins.

The Scouser’s quick free kick caught the Saints midfield on their heels as Jason Knight was set loose.

Knight fed Bell, who cut inside Kyle Walker-Peters and fired at goal, but the winger’s effort was deflected behind for a corner.

Moments later, Tommy Conway went through down the left and it took a strong block from Jan Bednarek to send the ball behind once more.

Conway was earning some joy down the channels and worked the ball well to find the onrushing Haydon Roberts.

The left-back’s cross found George Tanner at the far post but the ex-Manchester United man couldn’t keep his volley down.

Martin’s side responded well to the City pressure and struck the onr at the 17-minute mark.

After a slick passing move, Sam Edozie tried to flick the ball into the path of David Brooks.

Zak Vyner stuck a leg out, but the ball rebounded to Edozie whose instinctive volley skimmed off the crossbar with Max O’Leary planted to the ground.

They couldn’t make their pressure stick though and City continued to enjoy the space in behind the Saints backline.

Knight broke free twice but couldn’t make the most of the opportunity, as Anis Mehmeti was denied by Gavin Bazunu who was fast out of his goal to clear the ball 35 yards up the pitch.

Mehmeti had an effort deflected narrowly wide and Armstrong forced O’Leary into an impressive save as the sides went in level at the break.

Martin’s team talk seemed to be effective and his side came within centre metres of taking the lead in the early seconds of the second period.

Edozie sprung into life down the left and fired across the goal where Brooks was arriving.

The Bournemouth loanee stuck a leg out but couldn’t quite force the ball home as it trickled narrowly wide.

Southampton were made to rue the miss as moments later City struck.

Mehmeti beat Ryan Manning and fizzed a low ball across goal, where Bell was placed to bundle home for 1-0.

The goal woke the Saints up and they immediately turned up the tempo of their passing.

Edozie skipped away from four City players and clipped a ball to the back post for Walker-Peters, and it took a brilliant stop by the leg of O’Leary to keep his side ahead.

Despite City being a goal in front, they weren’t settling for a narrow victory and went chasing a second goal.

Mehmeti was at the heart of everything positive for the hosts and had the better of Manning down the flank, but it was Williams who unlocked the Saints’ defence to set up City’s second.

The Scouser’s deep corner was met by the dominant Dickie, who leapt above everyone in white and blue to power home for 2-0.

Saints rallied to try and pull a goal back but City took advantage of their desperation as they attacked quickly to net a third goal.

Ross McCrorie advanced down the right flank and pulled the ball back to Cornick who struck into the top corner from 12 yards out.

Armstrong struck a late goal from the spot after Walker-Peters was caught by Cornick, but City held on comfortably.

Here's how the Robins fared...

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