Saturday, 31 October 2009

Birmingham preview

If I've said it once I've said it a hundred times: our success this season will be defined by the number of points we manage to plunder from the battlefields of the bottom half. We were terrible in this regard last year, six points from a possible thirty. This year we've done better: seven points from three games so far, wins at Ewood and Fratton Parks and an honourable draw at Wigan. So this game is important in this respect.

It's also important in the sense that we seem to be slowing down. No league win since September, no clean sheet since August and a slight feeling that we are losing ground on the top sides. As good as the win against Scunthorpe was in mid-week, we need a league win to keep the pressure on our new rivals.

Unfortunately I'm not sure that we will win. Birmingham are a pretty good side and will not be easy to break down. They might just have enough to cause us problems. So it's going to be a battle. In terms of a line-up, it sounds as if we will have most of our players fit. The one interesting issue is therefore in wide areas. On current form I would go for Craig Bellamy and Martin Petrov, but Stephen Ireland and Shaun Wright-Phillips both had good games on Wednesday. So this is Hughes' big decision.

Prediction? A frustrating 1-1.

2 comments:

thehappyhomeshop said...

Might sound a bit dramatic , but this game feels like a MUST WIN game. I'm going for 1-2 City!

Wigan Blue said...

If Mark Hughes has learnt his lesson about playing Stevie Ireland deep, then we'll cream them. If not it probably will be a 1 -1 draw.