Nigel Pearson says ‘poor decision making’ was the reason behind Bristol City’s 1-0 Carabao Cup defeat to Norwich City on Tuesday night.
Przemyslaw Placheta’s neat second-half strike proved enough for the Canaries to progress into the third round of the competition, as they struck the crossbar twice on their way to victory.
It was yet another frustrating home display from the hosts, as they looked void of any creativity and poise up front. The Robins had just a couple of potential openings, and Pearson was frustrated at the choices his players made in those situations.
“Look, key moments again. When you’ve got a situation where Anis could’ve played Nakhi for a tap-in, players have got to do better on the pitch,” he said.
“It’s slight things, simple things like recognising who’s having joy on the pitch and giving them the ball. So somebody like Ephraim Yeboah goes on and he makes a really positive impact and we turn down opportunities to give him the ball, one versus one. That is poor decision-making on the pitch.”
Yeboah was introduced for the final 20 minutes of the match and had yet another positive cameo on the right wing.
Though Placheta’s goal was easy on the eye from an attacking point of view, the way he was allowed to turn in the box and get a shot away disappointed Pearson.
“The goal is terrible from a defensive point of view. From an attacking point of view, the diagonal ball is an intelligent ball, the touch to cross it is a really committed piece of skill, but from a defensive perspective, it’s poor. The right side of our defence tonight was poor.”
It was right centre back Rob Dickie who allowed Placheta to swivel and shoot at goal, while right-back George Tanner struggled to cope with the Polish wide man all night.
Despite the Robins’ flat display, the manager insisted that his players approached the match with positive intentions, and praised their opponents.
“They’re a decent side as well, but I thought we played with positive intent but didn’t create enough goalscoring opportunities,” he said.
“Pretty straightforward really. I thought we had a go tonight and I thought we were certainly positive out on the pitch. I expect more on the pitch from everybody in terms of the winning mentality that we need. I think we attempted to do things right tonight but we came up against a decent side and we were a bit short.”