Though there were some positives, last season was a disappointing one for the South West club and Nigel Pearson will want his side to make the best possible start to the new campaign.
City put five past Hull the last time these two clubs met but the Tigers have invested significantly via the transfer market since so it is likely to be a new-look side that takes the field on Saturday.
That said, the hosts have some injury concerns ahead of the opening weekend.
The Robins are not without injuries of their own – with Antoine Semenyo and Tomas Kalas two of the high-profile absentees – and the starting XI mostly picks itself but there are some dilemmas facing Pearson ahead of the Hull clash…
Whether to start Kane Wilson
Right wing-back was a problem position for City last season and they look to have solved it by signing League Two Player of the Season Kane Wilson on a free transfer after he left Forest Green Rovers at the end of his contract.
Wilson is an exciting talent, as his 17 goal contributions last term show, but he missed their last pre-season game due to a slight injury.
Pearson has indicated he should be fit for the game against Hull on Saturday but he’ll be wary of rushing him back too soon just in case as he won’t want risk losing one of his key summer signings at the start of the new campaign.
Alex Scott or Mark Sykes are more than capable on the right flank so he does have the option of easing Wilson in.
Who to play behind the strikers
Assuming Wilson starts, Pearson will face a fresh dilemma over who to play behind the two strikers in his favoured 3-4-1-2 formation.
Andreas Weimann had great success there at points last season but with Semenyo injured, he will surely play up top alongside Chris Martin.
That means it is between Sykes and Scott. The latter joined on a free transfer from Oxford United and has caught the eye in pre-season but starting him and Wilson would be omitting City’s most exciting young player from the XI completely.
Scott turned heads in a breakthrough 2021/22 campaign before helping England win the U19 Euros this summer and producing a standout performance in the 1-0 victory over Bournemouth last weekend.
It’s a good issue to have for Pearson but it’s not an easy decision to make by any means.