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Bristol City's XI if they kept their best players including Abraham and Webster

Dean Windass was the man who crushed Bristol City’s Premier League dream with his strike in the 2008 Championship play-off final proving the difference against Hull City.

While the Robins threatened to get close to the big time under the stewardship of Lee Johnson, the Ashton Gate side’s season would often fizzle without trace.

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Nigel Pearson has guided the Cider Army to a 17th-placed finish in the Championship for 2021/22.

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The Ashton Gate crowd has witnessed some quality players play before them and we’ve put together a team of stars that have donned the red and white jersey in recent years…

Tom Heaton

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After joining on a free transfer from Cardiff City in July 2012, the three-time England international was Bristol City’s number one for the 2012/13 campaign, which saw the Robins finish bottom of the Championship table and relegated to League One.

Heaton would join Burnley on a free transfer in the summer where he would stay for six years and amass 200 appearances.

The 36-year-old is currently back at Manchester United, the side he started his career with.

Tomas Kalas

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Following a season-long loan under Lee Johnson, the Robins paid a club-record deal to sign the defender from Chelsea in July 2019.

The Czech Republic international has made 146 appearances for the club and remains a key part of the side.

Adam Webster

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The 27-year-old only spent one season at Ashton Gate after joining from Ipswich Town before Brighton & Hove Albion splashed out a club-record transfer to bring him to the Amex.

The Seagulls paid £20m to bring the talented centre-halve to the south coast. In his third season in the top-flight, Webster has kicked on under Graham Potter and looks to be improving year on year in the Premier League.

Lloyd Kelly

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Eddie Howe’s Bournemouth signed the Bristol City Academy graduate for £13m in May 2019.

In his final season with the Robins before moving to the Vitality Stadium, Kelly made 32 Championship appearances.

Kelly’s performances for the Cherries this season have helped them win promotion back up to the Premier League.

James Tavernier

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Rangers’ captain only played 15 games for City during a four-month loan spell in 2015, the season in which the Robins were promoted back up to the second-tier of English football as League One champions.

From 12 League One games, Tavernier scored three goals and provided one assist.

Since making the move north of the border, the attack-minded full-back has scored 80 goals and provided 106 assists from 342 matches for the Glasgow giants.

Josh Brownhill

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Burnley signed Lee Johnson’s captain for £9m in January 2020 after he made 161 appearances for the Robins.

Brownhill scored 17 goals in 161 appearances in three-and-a-half seasons at Bristol. Johnson was reluctant to lose the 26-year-old, who he brought to Ashton Gate in 2016 after working with him at Barnsley.

The all-action midfielder has scored two Premier League goals this season, with his second top-flight strike proving to be a crucial winner at Watford.

Luke Ayling

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After four years at Yeovil Town, Ayling spent two seasons at Ashton Gate, one of which in League One and one in the Championship.

In the summer of 2016, the former Arsenal youngster joined Leeds United and he has remained a regular with the Whites since the Yorkshire side gained promotion back to the top-flight.

We’ve put the 30-year-old in central midfield due to his versatility and him occupying that position previously in his career.

Ryan Fredericks

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The full-back was only at Ashton Gate for 25 days in the summer of 2015 before moving to Fulham on the last day of the August transfer window.

Fredericks only played five games for the Robins after arriving from Tottenham. The 29-year-old is currently plying his trade at West Ham and is part of the Hammers side that has reached the Europa League semi-finals.

Ryan Kent

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The former Liverpool youngster spent four months on loan in Bristol from January to May in 2018.

The forward played 11 games for the Ashton Gate side, but it’s his move to Ibrox which has catapulted his career.

From 170 matches for the Europa League semi-finalists, the 25-year-old has scored 30 goals and registered 46 assists.

Andreas Weimann

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Bristol City signed the Austrian international from Derby County in the summer of 2018 following the Rams’ play-off run.

The former Aston Villa man has become a key player for the Robins and has broke new ground this season by reaching the 20-goal mark for the first time in his career.

From 45 Championship matches this season, Bristol City’s number 14 has scored 22 goals and provided 10 assists.

Tammy Abraham

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Bristol City was Abraham’s first loan move away from Chelsea and what a fruitful move it was for all parties.

The England international scored 26 goals for the Robins and what a pairing Weimann and Abraham could have been.

Abraham has been a big hit in Italy since joining Jose Mourinho’s Roma side. He’s scored 24 goals for the Giallorossi who are pursuing UEFA Conference League glory.

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