Flint strike lights Robins fire
LEE Johnson wants his Bristol City players to have that winning feeling in their last nine games, which he billed as cup finals, after taking all three points at Wigan.
Aden Flint’s late goal gave the Robins the win at the DW Stadium, City’s first since February 4, leaving under-pressure Johnson delighted.
With the music blaring out of the dressing room in celebration, Johnson found time to joke about ripping his jacket when remonstrating with the officials and felt his side earned their luck.
“It's a massive win and the players are buzzing – it’s like a nightclub in that dressing room,” he said.
“We’ve needed that winning feeling back, especially today which had a cup final feeling about it.
“We’ve got nine left and we needed to win it.
“The last five minutes was like three hours for me, but I thought we looked reasonably solid. It was scrappy, yes, but it was always going to be as it was two teams fighting for their lives.”
David Perkins, restored to the line-up after the midweek win at Birmingham, nearly capped off a dominant spell for the Latics, but his curling left-footed effort skimmed the bar on 25 minutes.
Gabriel Obertan – making a second start since signing in January – was denied at the back post minutes later by Frank Fielding, from Everton loanee Callum Connolly’s cross.
And Johnson was an angry man before the break when he thought Connolly had dragged Matty Taylor back, even demonstrating to the fourth official by pulling his own suit.
“I’ve managed to tweak a few fibres of the suit jacket (when showing it to the fourth official), but I’ll ask my missus to stitch that up,” Johnson added.
“I had a long chat with the referee at half-time and I asked could he see (the penalty shout). He said he wasn’t sure – maybe our striker could go down but he’s tried to be honest.”
Bristol City’s winner came in the 88th minute when Flint bundled the ball over the line in front of the ecstatic City fans for his third league goal of the campaign.
Wigan boss Warren Joyce felt the goal should not have stood.
And he admitted his players need to be more streetwise after a 12th home game without a goal.
He said: “We’ve looked back at it and it’s not a corner. In saying that, I don’t think we deserved to win the game.
“You can’t fault the players’ effort.
“We’re just not able to score goals, but we are in every game until the end.
“Gaby Obertan is a quality player but a long way from full fitness.
“A transfer window is easy if you’ve got money and you go out and buy someone who’s doing it as this level.
“With him, Michael Jacobs, Omar Bogle, and Alex Gilbey – it’s promising but they haven’t played for six months.
“But getting them fit gives you a chance and gives you hope.
“It’s about grinding wins out – they’re the small margins that either makes or costs sides during the season.
“But that takes time with players who have never played at this level before – it’s not a player’s fault if they’ve not been taught it.”
LATE SHOW: Bristol City defender Aden Flint, far right, scores the winner