Date:Friday May 18 2007
Ask any Blues fan for their best moment of this season and there will be a large range of answers; everyone will have their personal favourite and it may be something that was quite insignificant in the grand scheme of things, but meant a lot to them at the time.
In a season which seems to have had more ups and downs than average, there are a few incidents which stand out as especially thrilling, either as good football or pivotal to achieving promotion.
Chatting to a bunch of fans produced these "best moments"; please share your own in the comment section.
In no particular order:
Clemence v Derby
Until the 83rd minute, Birmingham`s meeting with Derby at Pride Park was a dour encounter between (at the time) two desperately average teams who could have played until midnight without scoring a goal. Derby had Birmingham under the cosh but could not put their chances away. Then, one of those "slow motion" moments occurred as the ball looped into the penalty area and deflected off Clemence into the net. This was the goal that surely saved Steve Bruce`s job, setting Blues off on a winning streak that took them back to the top of the table.
This is a game that will be etched into the minds of fans for years. It didn`t contribute to the league campaign one iota, but this morale-boosting annihilation of the Magpies showed the fans exactly what this young team were capable of when they had the bit between their teeth. McSheffrey and Bendtner were on fire and N`Gotty returned to score a goal worthy of any striker.
Blues` young second keeper fought his way to the top spot following a bad run of form from Maik Taylor. His skill then kept the Northern Ireland keeper away from the first team for the rest of the season.
He produced a world-class save from distance in the Birmingham-Cardiff game to preserve the 1-0 lead and then capped off his season by coolly saving a penalty at the Molineux to give Blues the victory and a real chance of automatic promotion.
There is always at least one comedian who lights up the season and a rather portly Borat invaded the pitch at the end of the Sheffield Wednesday game, complete with bright green "mankini". The stewards could barely restrain him for laughing.
Cole v Wolves
A goal that only a player of his experience could score, this was another of those "slow motion" moments as he flicked the ball into the air and it hung, suspended in thin air, before looping its way into the net.
Berated by a small section of the fans for being "lazy" this young man is surely one of the classiest players to ever play in Royal Blue. Watching him develop his skills this season has been a pleasure. He has scored some great goals and surely has a fantastic future ahead of him at the top level.
Larsson v Sheffield Wednesday
Seb Larsson`s "Maradona" moment will be remembered by many as the goal that assured Birmingham`s journey back to the Premiership. Picking up the ball in his own half, he charged past three defenders to fire a low shot into the goal at the Tilton End to set the stadium rocking.
Simply the Best
A great postscript to this season has been learning that Gary McSheffrey has been judged the Championship`s player of the year. Holding off competition from Jamie Cureton and Chris Iwelumo, his consistent performances and enviable tally of goals and assists mean that Birmingham have a player who is the envy of many.
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