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Following a run of just one win in eight Championship outings over the past couple of months, Coventry’s remarkable season looked to be petering out in the closing stages of the campaign.
However, thrilling wins over Fulham and Birmingham City in their last two games have revived their hopes of an incredible achievement of reaching the playoffs next month.
For the majority of the first half in their short trip across the West Midlands on Friday, the Sky Blues looked to be suffering from a hangover of their fantastic 3-1 triumph at league leaders Fulham five days earlier, before their never-say-die attitude under Mark Robins kicked in once again.
After falling 2-0 behind owing to some dreadful defending from set pieces, Robins’ men netted a quickfire double on the stroke of half time from two dead-ball situations of their own to haul themselves back into the contest.
Ben Sheaf netted both of those goals at the end of the opening 45, and Gustavo Hamer‘s deliveries continued to cause problems for the Birmingham defence into the second half too, as he got his second assist when Michael Rose powered home his corner to provide his side with the lead for the first time in the contest.
The only goal of the game to arrive from open play came in the final minute of normal time, as some neat build up led to Callum O’Hare sealing the three points and a remarkable comeback win.
That victory could well prove crucial for Coventry in the final few weeks, with eight of the nine sides above them in the table dropping points on Friday, meaning they climbed a place to ninth ahead of the action on Easter Monday, with just three points separating them from the playoff places ahead of another huge game against Bournemouth.
Coventry will have to make do without their valuable striker Matt Godden for the remainder of the season it appears, so much of the goalscoring burden remains on the shoulders of Viktor Gyokeres.
Jake Clarke-Salter is also a big miss in their back line, whilst the injury picked up by Fankaty Dabo on Friday leaves him doubtful for Monday’s encounter.
Todd Kane would be the likely replacement for Dabo at wing-back, whilst Josh Eccles and Jordan Shipley are further doubts, with the latter missing the last two matches due to COVID-19.
As for the visitors, first-choice left-back Jordan Zemura remains sidelined with a hamstring problem, meaning right-back Adam Smith could well fill in on the left-hand side once more.
David Brooks remains unavailable for the foreseeable future, and he is joined on the list of absentees by Kieffer Moore, Morgan Rogers and Junior Stanislas.
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Jaidon Anthony provided a spark off the bench against Middlesbrough, so the winger may well have earned a start in place of Todd Cantwell or Ryan Christie in attack.
Manchester United loanee Ethan Laird is expected to keep his place at right-back after earning his start for the club last time out.
Coventry City possible starting lineup:
Moore; Rose, Hyam, Bidwell; Kane, Allen, Sheaf, Hamer, Maatsen; O’Hare; Gyokeres
Bournemouth possible starting lineup:
Travers; Laird, Phillips, Kelly, Smith; Lerma, Cook; Christie, Billing, Anthony; Solanke