Bristol City Women manager Tanya Oxtoby WSL Bristol City Women v Arsenal WSL football match, Stoke Gifford Stadium, Bristol, UK - 28 Oct 2018 Photo: Kieran McManus for The FA

Home woes – Could Bristol City’s survival hopes be helped by playing at a neutral venue?

The option of playing this season’s remaining Barclays FA Women’s Super League fixtures behind-closed-doors at a central base is one of the options thought to have been discussed during a video conference with the participating clubs on Thursday as reported by BBC Sport.

This would mean that all of the remaining 45 matches would be played on neutral territory in a bid to get the current campaign completed once deemed safe to do so by the UK Government when the threat of the Coronavirus has receded.

In the case of relegation-threatened Bristol City, the possibility of behind-closed-doors fixtures away from their Stoke Gifford Stadium home may not be such a bad outcome in the short term, despite the potential move being unpopular with their fans.

Tanya Oxtoby’s side’s home record this season is nothing short of dismal. Bristol City have played six of their 11 home fixtures to date, losing five and drawing one. Their only point of the season recorded on home soil came on opening day when they drew 0-0 with Brighton & Hove Albion at Ashton Gate.

The Robins’ best form has come on the road, in fact, their away form is something which is much better than their overall league position suggests. Bristol City have played eight games away from home and have lost just half of them. They have collected eight points from an available 24, beating Manchester United and Birmingham City and drawing at Liverpool and Reading. Their away record is five points better than relegation rivals Birmingham City and Liverpool while they have also taken more points on their travels than four of the sides above them in the Barclays FA Women’s Super League table, although it should be noted that The Robins have played more games away.

There is no such thing as home comforts for Bristol City this season and while many clubs would bemoan the potential need for playing away from their fans, Oxtoby’s side may see it as a positive in the short term.

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