03 March 2021

Jonathan Woodgate praises performance of defender Lloyd Kelly against old club

03 March 2021

Jonathan Woodgate praised the contribution of former Bristol City defender Lloyd Kelly as Bournemouth returned to the Championship top six with a 2-1 win.

It looked as though the hosts were on course for a third straight victory since Nigel Pearson’s appointment as manager when Tyreeq Bakinson headed them in front from Jack Hunt’s 38th-minute cross.

But Bournemouth equalised when City keeper Dan Bentley fumbled a Junior Stanislas cross into his net in first-half stoppage time for an embarrassing own goal.

And the visitors grabbed a fortunate 88th-minute winner when Phil Billing’s header from a Stanislas corner ricocheted in off team-mate Cameron Carter-Vickers.

Of Kelly’s performance at left-back, head coach Woodgate enthused: “Lloyd can look like a Rolls-Royce at times.

“It is all a matter of consistency how far he goes in the game. If he goes on performing like that a lot of Premier League clubs are going to take notice.

“Junior Stanislas is claiming our first goal and I don’t blame him. The ball was on target when the keeper dropped it.

“We went on to dominate the second half and were well worth our win. I’m not sure how the winning goal went in, but I don’t care.

“The result put us back in the top six and it is now vital that we stay there. I thought we began the game really well.

“They went ahead with a preventable goal, but I was really pleased with the way my players responded.

“The second half was how I want us to play and we made positive substitutions to try and win.”

Pearson was far from despondent at his first setback as City boss.

“I am very disappointed with the result and that would still have been the case if the game had ended 1-1,” he said.

“Both Bournemouth goals came from mistakes. Dan Bentley doesn’t need telling about the first one and Tyreeq Bakinson lost his man at a corner for the second.

“Dan is a very good goalkeeper. He made a mistake and we move on. I still saw plenty from my players in terms of work ethic and trying to win the game.

“We had to reorganise in the second half when Jack Hunt had to go off with a head injury. Zak Vyner moved to full-back, which means he has already played in three different positions in my short time at the club.

“Last Saturday at Swansea we defended for our lives and came out with a win. Tonight we deserved more. That’s football.

“I try to be positive as often as possible and there was plenty to like about the team’s effort.”

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