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McCann’s Bristol City Reaction

11 December 2021

Grant McCann admitted the draw against Bristol City felt like a defeat after Matty James’ last-minute equaliser denied his team victory.

The Tigers led 2-1 heading into injury time, courtesy of goals from Ryan Longman and George Honeyman either side of a strike from Antoine Semenyo.

But James’ effort in the first minute of stoppage time salvaged the Robins a point, although the result still stretched the Tigers’ unbeaten run to six matches.

“We’re a bit disappointed,” said McCann.

“It was a good response from us after conceding in the second half to get the second goal.

“We’re gutted – the boys were gutted to concede so late in the game. It almost feels a bit like a defeat if truth be told.

“We have to understand where we are at this present time – it’s been a good response from the group over the last six games – but we’re just disappointed with that goal right at the death.

“It’s a good finish from Matty James – you have to give him credit – but we should do better there.

“If I look at the game on reflection, it’s probably a fair result. We’re disappointed not to win it but overall, it’s probably a fair result.”

Longman’s curling third-minute opener was his second goal in as many home games, and McCann is pleased with how he is progressing.

“Ryan has been good all in all the games – his performances have been at a high level,” McCann said. “He’s improving all the time.

“He got the goal today because he took Scott on the outside the first time he got it. The second time he got it, he took him on the inside.

“That’s something we speak to the wide players about all the time – show them how quick you are, take them on the inside because nine times out of 10, the inside will open up for you. He did that and it was a great finish.

“It’s nice to see his ability coming out now. He went through a little period of time with injury and Covid at the start of the season and it’s taken him a bit of time to recover.

“He’s feeling stronger now, he’s feeling fitter, he’s looking fitter, he’s looking sharper and he’s affecting games.”

McCann was also impressed with the performance of Sean McLoughlin at the other end of the pitch.

“Sean has been very, very good,” McCann added.

“He’s had to wait patiently for his opportunity but again, he’s growing all the time.

‘He had a little bit of a sample of the Championship the last time we were in it but maybe at the time Sean wasn’t ready for that.

“But he’s looking every bit a Championship player at the minute – that’s probably the biggest compliment I can give him, and he’s performing week in, week out.”

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