Saturday, August 6th, 2016
Lee Johnson likened his bold attacking approach to a computer game after seeing City come from behind to snatch a dramatic victory against Wigan Athletic on the opening day of the season.
The head coach saw his team trailing to Alex Gilbey’s first-half goal until the closing stages, as debutant Tammy Abraham equalised with nine minutes left and Bobby Reid flicked in Gary O’Neil’s shot at the death.
Both goalscorers were introduced at the same time in an inspired double substitution midway through the second half as City threw caution to the wind against the newly-promoted Sky Bet League One champions.
“We changed the formation and went gung-ho,” Johnson told Bristol City Player HD.
“If you’re playing Championship Manager and putting the tactics board on, there’s a little tactics attitude that says ‘gung ho’ – that’s what we did and it was effective for us at home.
“I thought the crowd were superb – they really enjoyed the tempo of the second half and rightly so, because the boys deserved that adulation.
“The place was rocking. It was a lovely day and for our boys to keep that tempo up for the whole game just shows how fit we are and proves we’ve had a very good pre-season.
“It gets us on the board and it’s a monkey off the back that takes us into the Wycombe game and then the Burton game in credit, which is key to the mindset.”
Johnson was happy with City’s work rate in a frustrating opening period, but asked for more composure from his players at the interval.
“We didn’t quite have the clinicality we needed in the finish or the delivery, but it was like the Alamo at times and it was too much for them in the end,” he added.
“We know we’ve got quality on the pitch; I’ve said before that we’ve got goalscorers. It was a lovely little flick from Bobby Reid that we see every day.
“No one is quite sure how tall Tammy Abraham is because no one can reach him to measure him! It feels like he’s 6ft 5in going on 6ft 7in and still growing every day.
“We had some big boys on there by the end but they’re mobile boys, and that’s what eventually took its toll on the Wigan defence.”
Johnson also revealed man-of-the-match Callum O’Dowda was withdrawn in the second half due to a shin injury sustained in the first half, while Lee Tomlin’s movement was restricted by a dead leg suffered in the warm-up. Neither problem is thought to be too serious.