Frustrated Bristol City striker draws blank but Weimann slays World Cup runners-up

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There’s no rest for some of Bristol City’s most important players this month

Bristol City’s international stars had a mixed bag of success with their respective countries whilst they continue to be away on duty.

For most Robins players, they are still in the off season with pre-season for the 2022/23 Championship campaign still a few weeks away.

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But for a select few, after finishing their club campaign in early May, they’ve had to keep fit for their countries and will have a minimal break for next season.

It’s not all bad news though as some have had some joy with their countries after an indifferent campaign for City on a whole.

Before kicking off for Bermuda against Haiti, Nahki Wells spoke of how he wanted to use his frustration over lack of first-team opportunities with his club as a source of motivation to perform for the Gombey Warriors.

In an interview with the Royal Gazette, he said: “Not having the season I wanted this year, I probably have a little more of a chip on my shoulder and a bit more hunger to go out there and do well and score some goals.”

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The 32-year-old though found more frustration as he failed to find the back of the net in a goalless draw with Haiti in their CONCACAF Nations League match. He played the entirety of the game but failed to make his mark.

There are three further games to follow with Guyana up next tomorrow at 21:00 GMT, then a double-header against Monsterrat follows with the away match on Sunday, 12 June and then the two battle again two days later on Tuesday, 14 June.

These three games are an opportunity for Wells to discover some form before returning back to club duty. It’s important that he doesn’t pick up an injury as he already has a daunting task of displacing City’s formidable attacking trio.

That moves us on to the man that probably changed Wells’ role in the side after returning from an anterior cruciate ligament injury to become City’s top scorer, Andreas Weimann. The 30-year-old’s career best season was rewarded with a full recall to the Austrian national team after being called up as a replacement back in March.

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Weimann was given a full start by Ralf Rangnick, in charge of Austria after leaving his role as technical director of Manchester United. He was deployed as a midfielder in a 3-1-4-2 formation which brought up three goals away from home against 2018 World Cup runners-up Croatia.

He didn’t find the back of the net but earned a respectable player rating of 7.1 with respected football data website WhoScored, weimann was neat in his play with a 93% pass success rate and had two shots of his own but couldn’t find the back of the net before being substituted in the 72nd minute for Christoph Baumgartner.

The games are thick and fast and tonight he could line up again against EURO 2020 semi-finalists Denmark in what is a tricky group. A further match against World Cup winners France takes place on Friday, 10 June and then it is rounded off against Denmark on Monday, 13 June.

The second part of the formidable attacking combination of Martin-Semenyo and Weimann then had some confusing speculation made about him as he made his way to Africa to represent Ghana for the first time.

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Semenyo, after missing out on making his international bow after an injury back in March, made his debut against Madagascar. The 22-year-old came on as a substitute in the 76th minute in a 3-0 win in a qualifying match for the Africa Cup of Nations.

After the game, there had been reports from Ghana that he would be leaving camp to sort out his club future but reports were wide of the mark and instead he returned to England as a precaution for his injury.

It meant he wouldn’t take part in the qualifier with Central African Republic which saw Ghana surprisingly draw 1-1 with. There is a Kirin Cup semi-final to look forward to for Ghana against Japan but only former City keeper Jojo Wollacott will be the representative from Bristol and he’s touch-and-go after missing the last match through illness.

As well as former Robins go, academy graduate Joe Morrell qualified for the World Cup with Wales, having not played in the competition since 1958. They will play against Gareth Southgate’s Three Lions in each side’s final group stage match on 29 November.

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An unused substitute, Morrell, was on the bench as he watched Andriy Yarmolenko turn in Gareth Bale - who has been linked with a sensational move to City’s Championship rivals Cardiff City - free-kick.

The 25-year-old only made six appearances across a seven-year spell at Ashton Gate and had multiple loan moves elsewhere but is now settled with Portsmouth in League One.

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