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Bristol City sack their manager

Bristol City sack their manager Lee Johnson following a dismal run of results coming as a blow to their chances of reaching the Championship playoffs.

It comes hours after the Robins suffered a 1-0 home defeat to Neil Harris’ Cardiff City on Saturday afternoon, making it nine games without a win for the Robins, and has led to the club’s decision to part with Johnson after four years at Ashton Gate.

The club statement read: Lee Johnson was this evening relieved of his role as Bristol City Head Coach.

Current Assistant Head Coach Dean Holden will take over immediately in a caretaker capacity as the club look to appoint a successor.

City Chief Executive Mark Ashton said: “We recognise the huge amount of work that Lee has put in over the last four-and-a-half years to move this club forward and we thank him for all his efforts. There have been some special moments over those years and Lee has played a significant part in them.

“However, success in football is ultimately judged by results and league position and the Board believes that a change of management is needed now for Bristol City.”

The club will be making no further comment at this stage as we prepare for next Wednesday’s Sky Bet Championship match against Hull City.

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Johnson has been with the Robins since 2016 after previously managing Barnsley and Oldham Athletic, both in League One at the time.

His record at City was 84 wins, 54 draws and 79 defeats, giving him a win % of 38.7. For his time at Barnsley, it was 39.2% and at Oldham, 35.0%.

He led the Tykes to the EFL Trophy Final in 2016, in which his successor Paul Heckingbottom managed to claim the cup win.

In the 2017–18 season, Johnson led the club to the semi-finals of the EFL Cup, defeating several Premier League clubs in the lead up, notably defeating José Mourinho’s Manchester United. During the semis, Bristol City exited the competition after a 3–5 aggregate defeat to eventual champions Manchester City, a game in which saw Pep Guardiola praise Johnson for his side’s style of play.

In May 2019, he signed a new four-year contract with the Robins, keeping him until the summer of 2023.

He has guided the club to finishes of 18th (15/16), 17th (16/17), 11th (17/18) and 8th (18/19) – and this season, they currently sit 12th in the Championship table, just nine points off the playoffs with five games remaining.

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