I recently ran a survey on my social media, for Bristol City fans to complete to get a wide view on how the fans see the current squad, and whether they would keep them at the club for the 2022/23 season.
The survey asked for one response for each player ‘Keep’, ‘Loan’ or ‘Sell’, or for the players out of contract in the summer ‘Offer Contract’ or ‘Release’. Here are the results from the over 250 responses received, and some context on possible reasons why the fans voted the way they did.
This is the second year I have ran this, if you want to check out last years, then press the link below!
Having been appointed club captain back in the summer, Dan Bentley has had a mixed season. Crucial mistakes against the likes of Luton, he was dropped over the festive period. His parry zones are worrying, and rebounds happen often, but he still makes world-class saves. Looking at the past few games he has certainly been a much more positive keeper… even if sometimes it may give us fans a heart attack.
Having been given a extended run in the side over the festive period, Max O’Leary conceded 21 in 9 league games. Most of our fans would have expected better from a keeper that has previously shown how good he can be. Probably not on a high wage, keeping him around as a back up to Bentley is a good option.
If you have watched the Under-23’s this or last season, you would know how good this lad is. Harvey Wiles-Richards is a great shot-stopper and from the looks of it has a good potential. Having watched him at Gloucester City, he looks ready for men’s football, having been a stand out since joining on loan. Hopefully he will get plenty of action next season.
It looked for a while this season that Jay Dasilva’s time at the club was at an end, as sides had fully worked out how to exploit his lack of height- West Brom away was painful to watch. After time out the team, JDS came back and started showing decent performances in a struggling side, and has stepped up of late, with a winner agaisnt Stoke City for his second City goal. Will we see him at his best next year? Well that depends on if he can stay fit.
Cameron Pring has had an excellent breakout year for Bristol City. Having to bide his time, only making his debut for the club at the start of the season, Pring has looked comfortable wherever he has played this term, whether on the left or at centre-back. Lightning quick, skilful on the ball and always looking to be on the front foot, the 24-year-old has been out the side recently slipping below Duncan Idehen in the pecking order.
Becoming a cult hero quickly, with his social media antics, Ryley Towler was thrown to the lions last season, deployed as a left-wing back when in the side. One match this season, Towler looked out of place up agaisnt Millwall and Benik Afobe, giving away a penalty in the first half. Looked good on loan at Grimsby Town in the National League. Give him a loan out next season without having to recall him.
One of last seasons saviours, if not for him and Bents then we probably would have played League One football this season. He has never had a comfortable centre back partnership since Adam Webster left for the Premier League. As club record signing, maybe we were expecting something more from him, especially this season.
Nathan Baker has been a great servant for the club, having made the sixth most league appearances since promotion in 2015. Rumours are circulating that he will retire at the end of the season, if so, it would not be a fitting way to end his career. Head injuries against West Brom and Sheffield United have seen the defender out since November. Released last year but signed on in what seemed desperation, we all know how good he can be, but lets hope for the best whatever the outcome.
Last season, Zak Vyner was a player that over 88% of fans that took the survey wanted to stay. Considering his performances this season, only 84% of fans want him to leave, you can see how important we all thought he was last year filling in at Centre-back, right back and in midfield. Vey much a confidence player, when he makes a mistake, there is another one coming, but when he plays well, it is normally very comfortable.
Rob Atkinson arrived as the major summer signing from Oxford and looked very comfortable in his opening few matches in the Championship. Illness hampered the middle of the season, having to spend time out the team and sitting on the bench. Regaining his place in the starting line-up, he has showcased his ability in the air and on the ball and is looking like a strong player for years to come.
Sign On: 80.9%
The experienced head in the current back three having already played 100-second tier matches before joining Bristol City in January Timm Klose looked comfortable on his debut against Preston North End. The club has been defensively poor in the past two years and on the odd occasion, Klose has looked suspect. Paired with Atkinson and Cundy the big man in the middle will hopefully be receiving a new contract for next season.
Sign On: 81.7%
Another player embarking on his first season in the Championship, Cundy, come February found himself in the side regularly. On the right of a back three, it is probably not his preferred position but has teamed up well with Atkinson and Klose, with performances more encouraging in the latter few games of the season. Stand-out performance away at Bournemouth has shown he’s ready for the second tier I will be a good squad player for next season.
It was such a shame to see George Tanner having to sit on the side-lines through injury. The youngster came in, and as acknowledged by Nigel Pearson, was only meant for the U23’s. However, the signing from Carlisle showed real fight despite his rawness with tough challenges, even popping up with a goal against Peterborough.
Does anyone know what Taylor Moore has actually been up to this season? We see the results from Scottish football and we know that Hearts will be playing European football next year, but after every match on social media, you see Hearts fans say that kids stealing a career. He looked promising a few years ago before Ashley Williams took his spot in the side and he has never really recovered to Championship quality. Probably one of the players that will be let go at the end of the year.
Personally, I saw it as an underwhelming signing in the summer, Matty James came into the side and played very well in midfield. Another one whose season has been disrupted by injury the former Leicester center-midfielder never really got back to the levels of earlier this season. He is trusted by Nigel Pearson and will probably be an important member of the squad next season.
Sign On: 87.4%
It has not been a good homecoming for the Bristol City fan, as Andy King has spent most of the season out with injury, having been limited to 15 league appearances. When played, his role was undefined, not as a genuine center-midfielder or properly backing up the two men up top. Being given a new contract will probably mean one or two of the other midfielders at the club will be leaving.
Since arriving from Wigan in 2020, Joe Williams has struggled to get regular game time to repetitive injury setbacks. This has limited the midfielder to 21 matches this season. When he is on the pitch, his passing range is exceptional, with many of his passes going unnoticed. Throughout the season, the midfield has been chopped and changed, not allowing any real consistency. If there are any doubts of further injury setback, Williams’ position will have to be assessed.
When looking at his goal and assist contributions, Alex Scott *only* has four goals and two assists. If not for a mixture of squad mismanagement and player form, we would hopefully have seen Scott play in midfield more often than the bodge job at right wing-back/ right back. He has done well in his first full season for City, but will we be forced to sell the Young Player of the Year in the summer?
Han-Noah Massengo has been at Bristol City for three seasons now, do you personally think he’s progressed and developed as much as he could have especially with the form he showed originally when signing? Because I don’t. Remembering he’s still only 20 and has a lot more development to come, he rarely has a quiet game either being a majestic, dynamic skilful player or looking like a headless chicken making numerous mistakes. If the bid comes in and is right, I don’t think many fans would be against the club for allowing him to leave.
Making a surprise debut against Barnsley, Ayman Benarous plays with beautiful usefulness to his game. For any 18-year-old playing in the second division, there will have to be time for him to acclimatise. But being shoved into the deep end he’s looked ready for the challenge, his boot kicking antics against Blackburn and game management against Stoke City prove he’s got the mental capabilities. A loan to a football club next season should be on the cards as long as they don’t play him at left wingback.
The big man has been flogged all season and I know that many are not on his side. but neither were Marlon Pack or Famara Diedhiou. He has contested over 200 more aerial duals than any other Championship player- no wonder some of our attacks end in nothing-. He’s got double-digit goals and alongside Antoine Semenyo and Andreas Weimann his skills of hold up play with his feet and awareness of the pitch are easier shown than when in a two-man partnership. Just stop getting angry at him for not being able to chase an aimless 40-yard ball or not being able to take on and beat his man when he has the ball on the touchline.
We really missed him last year, didn’t we? Andi Weimann has hit 20 goals for the first time him his career at the age of 30, all coming off a 10-month layoff after rupturing his cruciate ligament last season. Having played wide right or up top since joining City in 2018, Weimann has found his place sat behind Martin and Semenyo in a front three that can look as destructive as anyone on their day. I do not know who would want to sell him, but all but one vote wanting to keep him at the club proves that he is more than just a fan favourite.
It has been a real breakout season for Antoine Semenyo, having missed the start of the season through injury he had a real purple patch over the festive period. Seven goals and 10 assists in the league this season has been a decent showing, but it could have been more. Lightning-quick, direct, strong on and off the ball and with a powerful shot Semenyo has developed into an almost perfect striker. More development is needed on his awareness and his finishing. One more season with us probably could make him into a Premier League ready forward.
Regular game time has come hard to find for both Sam Bell and Tommy Conway this season, despite the former having a short stint on loan at Grimsby Town earlier in the season. When Bell has started for City, he has been forced to play in the most unfamiliar position at right-wing back. Against Coventry and Middlesbrough, the youngster did well, but he was left isolated whilst being targeted against Birmingham City- he also struggled against an inexperienced Derby side.
Having been ruled out until the New Year with injury, Tommy Conway made his first appearance of the season in the FA Cup against Fulham and probably could have had two goals to his name. Having been a starlet in the academy for years, Conway has found time on the pitch hard to come by but always seems to be in the action when he is on it. Quick and brave hopefully he will find himself a loan in the Football League next season if not playing a bigger part for City.
Saikou Janneh looked to be in first-team plans having scored a brace against Forest Green Rovers in the League Cup, and then coming off the bench against Middlesbrough in the league the match afterwards. Since then game time has been non-existent at Bristol City and a currently goalless loan to Shrewsbury Town has made for a less than impressive season that started well for him personally.
Most City fans would think that all three of these will not be at the club next season. Callum O’Dowda has suffered major injuries since joining the club and has never shown the promise he had in his early time at the club. For someone who has played 160 league matches, only second to Marlon Pack (since 2015/16), he is yet to score 10 league goals. Hopefully, if his time at Ashton Gate is over, he can find a club where he can settle and keep fit. Still 27, it probably won’t be the last we hear of him.
Probably going down as one of the most disappointing signings made in recent years (although there is quite a lot of them) Nahki Wells join the club halfway through the 2019-2020 season having scored 13 goals for QPR. Since then, he has played almost 100 league matches for the club scoring 18 goals, a tally less than Jonathan Kodjia and Aden Flint. Probably on a big contract, allowing him to leave would probably suit both parties, if someone wanted to pay his wages.
Quite frankly don’t know how to write about Kasey Palmer because nobody’s heard about him from Bristol City since September after scoring against Fulham. Having joined on loan, most thought he was the best thing since sliced bread. Since then he’s been taking up a seat on the bench on a good day for him, he is probably spending most Saturdays at Noah’s Ark Zoo Farm.
Now there is one player missing from the list here and that is Tyreeq Bakinson: who had 88.6% of the votes to sell him, this after his near 93% approval rating last season. But I will make a separate piece on both the differences from last season and one on Bakinson in the next few days.
Highest Keep percentage:
Andi Weimann- 99.6%
Alex Scott 96.9%
Rob Atkinson/Jay Dasilva 94.3%
Antione Semenyo 93.9%
Here is what the team will look like in the 2022/23 season, decided on all your votes:
Goalkeepers: Dan Bentley, Max O’Leary
Defenders: Jay Dasilva, Cameron Pring, Tomas Kalas, Robbie Cundy, Timm Klose, Rob Atkinson, George Tanner
Midfielders: Alex Scott, Han-Noah Massengo, Ayman Benarous, Matty James, Joe Williams
Forwards: Chris Martin, Andi Weimann, Antione Semenyo,
Out On Loan: Harvey Wiles-Richards, Ryley Towler, Sam Bell, Tommy Conway, Saikou Janneh
Thank you so much for taking your time to look through this; if you want read more, give this website a look over, there will be more coming in the next few days and weeks.