ROBINS DE­SIRE SWIFTER RISE TO THE TOP

The Football League Paper - - CHAMPIONSHIP - By Joshua Richards

STEVE Cot­ter­ill may have led Bris­tol City to the dou­ble last sea­son, but club chair­man Keith Dawe re­vealed he has been sacked be­cause progress was not swift enough.

The Robins wrapped up pro­mo­tion to the Cham­pi­onship with three games to go in 2014-15 – hav­ing al­ready cel­e­brated suc­cess at Wem­b­ley in the John­stone’s Paint Tro­phy.

But 51-year-old Cot­ter­ill has not been given any more time to turn around a cam­paign that had seen the West Coun­try out­fit pick up just four wins from their 26 league games.

And for a club that has its heart set on a fu­ture in the Premier League, Dawe ad­mits a rel­e­ga­tion bat­tle in the Cham­pi­onship was never the plan.

“I brought Steve Cot­ter­ill into Bris­tol City just over two years ago as I be­lieved he could keep us in League One that year and build from there,” he said.

“Sadly, since the highs of last March and May things have not gone our way on the pitch.

“I thank Steve Cot­ter­ill for all his ef­forts over the last two sea­sons, but we haven’t man­aged to push on from last sea­son and the time has come for us to all move for­ward.

“The club’s as­pi­ra­tion is to ul­ti­mately be­come a Premier League club and this de­ci­sion has been made to achieve our over­all strat­egy for growth and player de­vel­op­ment.”

Mean­while loan sign­ing Richard O’Don­nell – who proved to be Cot­ter­ill’s last sign­ing at Ash­ton Gate – is de­ter­mined to dig his new side out of a hole af­ter join­ing from League One side Wi­gan Ath­letic.

“It’s a step up into the Cham­pi­onship for me and an op­por­tu­nity to play first team foot­ball,” said the 27-year-old goal­keeper, who is cover for in­jured No.1 Frank Field­ing.

“I know of David Coles, who has a re­ally good rep­u­ta­tion as a goal­keeper coach. That was a big rea­son for me com­ing.”

PIC­TURE: Ac­tion Im­ages

STUN­NER: Maikel Kieften­beld cel­e­brates scor­ing a won­der­ful third for Birm­ing­ham

AXED: Steve Cot­ter­ill

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