WATCHING Bristol City’s title celebrations has got young defender Matthew Pennington eager to taste success with the Sky Blues next year – should he remain at the Ricoh Arena.
The 22-year-old has impressed since joining on loan from Premier League outfit Everton in November.
So far Pennington has made 23 appearances and on Saturday he put in another strong performance alongside Reda Johnson who is enjoying being back in the first team.
The versatile defender is hoping to be selected again for the final two games of the season as the Sky Blues look to officially cement their place in League One next season.
But Pennington already has one eye on next year after seeing Bristol secure promotion to the Championship as champions.
“Seeing them celebrate, if I am here next year, I definitely want to be challenging up the top end of the league.” said Pennington.
“We’ve been unchanged for a while now and I think you can see that in the performances. When you play with the players next to you more, you get settled.
“Reda Johnson is a really commanding player at the back. He goes and wins everything in the air which gets us up the pitch which relieves a lot of pressure.
“I’m enjoying playing at centre-half as it is my favourite position and I want to keep my place for the final two games of the season.”
As for Saturday’s performance, Pennington was delighted to secure a fourth consecutive clean sheet on the road.
He added: “I thought it was a great performance from the side and I think we deserved a lot more than we got.
“Overall, I’m happy with a point as you can’t expect to win against the Champions but we’ve come here and given them a great game.
“Importantly, it keeps us moving away from the relegation zone. Their main threat was from set-pieces and corners, and I think we dealt with it well.
“Four clean sheets away from home is a great effort from us and we now need to keep it going for the last two games.
“Crewe is a huge game for us and I think if we can get one more result, that would be us over the line. Our home form has improved a bit as well which is great.”