Bournemouth Breeze Past Birmingham
Saturday 29 March
Birmingham City were beaten comprehensively by Bournemouth on Saturday. Macheda rescued some pride for the team after coming on as a sub as Lee Clark`s team selection could be questioned, again.
Blues lined up with Spector at right-back and Caddis holding with Reilly. Other than that the team looked very much the same as the one that clinched the 3-2 win at Millwall.
Blues started positively, a free-kick from Caddis brushed the post; the Tilton almost wished it in. 10 minutes later Reilly had an effort go close at the near post from a corner.
Deep down Blues fans were confident coming into this game, with the momentum and all from a win in a relegation battle.
But then Bournemouth come forward with Lewis Grabban, he crossed in to the far post and Matt Richie scores with 13 minutes gone.
Blues midfield was non-existent, they came towards the ball, left huge gaps for Bournemouth to play 3 passes round them and then Spector got nowhere near Harte who had cleverly pulled out very wide.
The cross came from the edge of the area as Harte played it into Grabban, he has 4/5 yards of space just inside the Birmingham area to cross the ball, its fantastic defending if you`re the one attacking it.
To top it all off Blackett ended up under the ball, missed the header and Ritchie finished well.
And then there were 2, Birmingham committed men forward and played an early ball into the middle. Bournemouth broke down the field with no attempted tackles from Birmingham, valiant defensive effort.
The ball across goal deflected off Martin and right into the path of Grabban who tapped it in for 2-0. Martin could of got anything more on that to put it behind, not sure why he couldn't actually get more on it, maybe he felt they deserved another goal.
Shortly after Robinson must have felt short passes near opposition players are his forte because that`s exactly what he did to sell short Reilly who then lost the ball to Bournemouth, a ball in the box; along the floor. Grabban beat Randolph to the ball and down he went.
Randolph brought him down yet he was going quite wide with the ball, so initially Robinson is at fault and Randolph just went and complimented the calamity.
Do bare in mind this all happened in the first 28 minutes. A good penalty from Grabban and that was 3-0.
The second half was actually an improvement for Birmingham, but before that it had to get a little worse.
A half-cleared corner back out to Harte and he curled it top left corner. Reilly`s attempt to block and challenge Harte was terrible, there is nothing else to be said about it; Harte proceeded in to score (no one else came to close him).
57 minutes in, Reilly crossed deep towards Ibe and he headed it down for Macheda to instinctively finish low into the net. A good goal, a few passes to release space in midfield and Ibe with a clever header.
73 minutes, Macheda finished from the edge of the area with a powerful shot. The Ball was played forward by Randolph and it reached Macheda through a questionable defensive header from Bournemouth.
Nothing more than the 2 goals went in for Birmingham. Improvements followed, Macheda had another header, Ibe also unleashed a shot wide of the post with 78 minutes played. Bournemouth also managed another corner.
The tactics used by Clark leave the fall-backs high and dry out on the wings and easy to attack, as evident every week via young Blackett`s performances. Clearly the manager feels we`re good enough to only protect the centre-backs. Although I agree Robinson needs all of the help he can get.
Birmingham can`t even keep the ball despite having 5 midfielders in there, something is not working, and it is all emphasised when teams play us at home. They know if they attack a set-up like Birmingham`s it will collapse before it can cause any harm; it is becoming comical.
Space was the biggest problem for Birmingham and Bournemouth had the pace to use it very well. To see so few blocks and tackles in the run up to each goals could be disappointing for Birmingham fans.
All in all I doubt Bournemouth will even need a rest after this weekend, they were not pushed hard for the three points.
A good game from him.