Nigel Pearson admits a huge lack of ‘confidence’ as talk of Bristol City pressure continues | Tech US News


The Robins face promotion-chasing Watford in their final game before the World Cup

Nigel Pearson has admitted he doesn’t trust some of his Bristol City players at the moment, which could affect his team selection against Watford. The Robins are in poor form with just two wins in their last 12 games.

The latest defeat came at the hands of Lincoln City, who scored three without reply until substitute Tommy Conway’s late consolation goal. The Imps, who were in mid-table in League One, beat City, who had eight changes.

Watford pose a serious threat given their Premier League fortunes last season and are a team well-equipped to make an immediate return to the top flight. The Hornets have won four of their last five games and are starting to work under the leadership of new coach Slaven Bilic. City, meanwhile, have won just once in their last five games at Ashton Gate.

His poor run of form has led to talk among fans as to whether Nigel Pearson could be under pressure. City’s current position of 20th is well below their play-off expectations and this will be their last chance to impress before the World Cup break.

The changes are expected to be made when the squad is announced at 2pm and it won’t take many from the Lincoln game to tell Pearson he may have changed his mind for Saturday. The 59-year-old stated that a positive result this weekend is imperative.

“Selection is about whether the players can do the job, but there is an element of confidence involved,” Pearson said ahead of Watford’s visit. Managers don’t have bad results forever.

“I am aware that it will probably be an important match, because otherwise people might start to question my position. I’ve put too much time and energy into this work to allow players that I probably don’t trust too much right now to play. I’ll be open about how I go about the game. The bottom line is we need a result this week, it’s as simple as that.”

“We’ve invested too much in the strategy we’re taking to neglect the work we’ve put in. It’s been a tough 18 months trying to reshape it.”

City’s poor form is in stark contrast to the last international break. After losing their first two games against Hull City and Sunderland, they went on a long unbeaten run. Two defeats to Norwich City and Burnley just before the end of September were the start of what was a slide down the table.

Pearson’s side have not been able to make it back-to-back wins since the international period before the World Cup, an unwanted habit from last season. However, it wasn’t for lack of trying and in some games City came away with nothing or just one point when the performance deserved more.

Defeat against Lincoln City on Tuesday was a disappointment given the fighting performance shown at Middlesbrough. In most matches, City were the better team and obliterated the opposition, but they had to put in a performance against Boro. This is the game against Boro that City needed to finish the games.

The absence of Kal Naismith, coupled with an outbreak of illness that rocked the squad, meant naming a consistent team was a difficult task. It led to individual mistakes that ultimately proved costly. The poor run of form eventually led to talk of pressure, but the former Leicester City manager believes there are more elements than putting the blame on him.

“I can only speak for myself, but I feel like there’s a lot of common frustration,” he said. It is important to pick the right team based on what we know we will get from the players we pick. There is an element of trust there.

“We had some good performances in the tough run we had. We didn’t always get the results, maybe the performances were justified. The main factor is too many individual mistakes that cost us. This is something we must continue to work on. There is no quick fix for this.

He added: “We’ve dropped to 20th, which isn’t good, but it’s just ridiculously tight. We keep throwing away points we shouldn’t. This means that we find ourselves on the downswing when our desires are much higher than that. Managers, after all, carry the can, but it’s so much more than that.”


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