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Peterborough United 0-1 Bristol City

27 March 2010 by

Bristol City had substitute David Clarkson to thank for earning them the three points in a thoroughly dull encounter at London Road.

Jim Gannon, who announced he would be leaving Posh at the end of the season earlier this week, started with a 3-1-4-2 formation as he looked to get Peterborough back to winning ways after his side lost 4-0 against Scunthorpe in mid-week. Nathan Koranteng was handed his first start in a Peterborough shirt, his only appearances so far for ‘The Posh’ was a substitute one against Swansea, he was placed up-front with Craig Mackail-Smith.

In a muted atmosphere at London Road the football did nothing the raise the volume inside the stadium and the opening minutes were played out with both teams playing very poorly. Posh were giving away possession cheaply and Bristol City were not looking particularly impressive either.

The first chance of note came when Bradley Orr let fly from long range with a half volley and Joe Lewis, in the Peterborough goal, had to back-track quickly to strain to tip the ball, that was dipping rapidly, over the bar and out for a corner.

Chris Whelpdale was then substituted off by Posh with a knee injury, it was a tough blow for the Posh player who had just returned from injury and forced his way back into the starting line-up. Whelpdale picked up the injury whilst competing for a deep cross from Tommy Rowe when he collided with Bristol City ‘keeper Dean Gerken and the post. He was replaced by Kerrea Gilbert, who was out of favour with Jim Gannon earlier in the week after the manager stated “he was not offering enough to the team or the club”.

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Lewis was called into action again after two long range efforts. The ‘keeper first parried away a Liam Fontaine effort and then thwarted Danny Haynes in quick succession. Both shots came about as Posh were not closing down well enough on the edge of their own penalty area.

The game went from bad to worse and the football on display from both sides was abject; both seem to be happy to be going in at 0-0 at the break.

The second half started in much of the same fashion as the frustrations amongst the home fans grew. It had been an abysmal season and many fans felt in necessary to vent their frustrations at the current situation during the match, it seemed. However the way that many conducted themselves was not appropriate.

Nathan Koranteng was replaced with Rueben Reid. In truth the youngster was quiet for much of the game although showed a few brief flashes of his pace, which seems to be his main threat, in his time on the pitch. Gannon seems to be looking to develop some of the youngsters at Posh with many named on the bench and Koranteng’s start will have offered him some valuable experience.

After a strong tackle and good run from Kerrea Gilbert the full back managed to whip in a low cross which just evaded Craig Mackail-Smith, the striker slide to head the cross when it looked like if he had put his foot out he would have had a better chance of making contact. There was a similar chance moments later for Mackail-Smith but the cross took a deflection and went out for a corner. The resulting free-kick saw Exodus Geoghagon register Peterborough’s first shot of the match but it never looked like threatening the Bristol City goal.

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Mackail-Smith hit the cross bar as the game went beyond the hour mark. The striker had created the chance well after out-pacing and out-muscling Louis Carey and turning him well to create some space. His shot from a tight angle was up for debate as to whether it was meant but it required a touch from Gerken to tap it onto the wood-work.

As the game progressed it seemed that the only chance of a goal would come from a set-piece, as both teams lacked the class to create anything from open play, and it was from a corner that David Clarkson gave the visitors the lead. The ball was angled in, by Paul Hartley, to the near post and met by the head of Clarkson, the ball flashed past Lewis and went into the back of the net to put ‘The Robins’ in-front.

Clarkson had the chance to extend the visitors lead moments later after Posh pushed forward in search of an equaliser but spurned his shot over the bar after some excellent work by Christiano Ribiero beating a couple of Posh players before playing the ball into the striker.

Exodus Geohagon wasted Posh’s last real chance of the game heading well wide after, somehow, he seemed to be left free at the back post by all the Bristol City defenders from a Lee Frecklington corner which was aimed at the far post.

The game itself was a depressing affair that felt more like a pre-season friendly than a competitive league match; the football and the atmosphere in the stadium showed two sets of fans and players that knew their teams had very little to play for. The one positive for Peterborough fans is they now know that the end of this season, that everyone would rather forget, is drawing to a close and the club can start re-building their squad, which is likely to be dismantled in the summer, ready for a campaign in League 1.

Pictures courtesy of www.BCFC.co.uk and www.theposh.com
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5 Comments »

  • gavh

    Both our supported teams are not doing well of late. Leicester were terrible today the own-goal was just like Neville and Robinson for England, and the passing was awful.

    For you Bristol City is a team I rate highly, like McDermott at Reading as soon as this caretaker boss comes in the team is starting to gradually pick up points and that’s the same case at Ashton Gate.

    Shame Gannon isn’t staying at Peterborough, you are all but down now and looking at your squad it’s really not got any class to it at the moment. McLean is injured, the defence is alright, but the midfield not any class players in there only Rowe and now Geogaghon who are really vital assets then you have Whelpdale, Frecklington and Torres floating around.

    Unlucky today hope you bounce back quickly and the same for Leicester in that matter.

  • John Verrall (author)

    You have been slipping up a little recently but I am sure you can make the play-offs still.

    Bristol City were very poor today but we were worse, having said that I don’t think this is the game to judge them on as they have nothing to play for.

    The question for us is whether or not we can re-build for next season. It’s likely the squad is going to need a complete overhauling and will have to settle quickly. I think we have three very good centre backs in Zakuani, Morgan and Bennett(Althought the latter two are currently injured) and Little at right back is a great addition on loan, once again he is injured as well.

    In midfield I don’t think we have a Championship quality player. Now Boyd has gone and Livermore has been re-called we are very lightweight in that department.

    Good luck in your promotion push, your season has been an excellent one and I hope you don’t throw your great start to the season away now.

  • gavh

    I hope not Pearson changed the team around today but it still didn’t pay off, our left-back Bruno Berner has been a huge miss in the side and without him in our last three games including today we have been really unlucky, but today we were very poor the passing was absolute dire in the second half.

    From Peterborough’s behalf, I do like the players you have in defence Morgan and Lee especially. Lee played well against Leicester last season, but your midfield isn’t got much quality to it and from what I read you agree, Whelpdale, Frecklington, Torres, Green are not Championship quality in my view. You need to rebuild next season but it all depends on the new manager, Gary Johnson???

  • John Verrall (author)

    I think Gary Johnson would be my favourite out of the realistic managers avaliable but whether he would want a job here is up for debate.

    I rate Lee, he never gives anything less than 100% when he plays. I think that is what the fans want to see at the minute; effort. Unfortunately many of our players don’t seem to have the stomach anymore.

    I think you have enough class to see yourself through. Hobbs and Morrison at centre backs. Oackley and Dyer in midfield and Fryatt up top all provide you some real class. I worry as to what the result may be when our teams play at London Road in the near future.

  • gavh

    Well Fryatt is out for the season, however this week Pearson said that he is back doing light training from his broke jaw sustained in a draw against Doncaster in January I think. So he may be back for the last couple of games of the season.

    For Hobbs and Morrison they are two great young talents, they have played well this season especially Hobbs and Morrison has come from Cambridge United and has adapted to Championship football really well.

    Oakley has been hit and miss this season and for Lloyd Dyer he always gives 100% like your Lee he has been amazing this month even if our form isn’t that good at the moment.

    Manager wise for you it could well be Johnson or maybe Russell Slade or Brendan Rodgers a couple of more realistic names.

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