Raising The Bar
Tuesday 9th September; 13:00pm.
Birmingham City was yet again, unlucky not to take all three points from their home fixture with Cardiff City last Tuesday. Despite many thinking this game would be a walk over for the visitors, the home side attacked from the start, showing real intent to gain maximum points from the fixture. Instead, the Bluebirds scored a last gasp winner despite Birmingham City hitting the woodwork on more than one occasion; another piece of bad luck for the development team.
The game started in a very lively manner, both sides aimed for the jugular very early on. It had the makings of a very open and end to end again, as both sides carved out decent chances.
Fourteen minutes into the game, the Cardiff City woodwork rattled. Will Packwood`s close range header thumped the crossbar. Truslove, who had a brilliant game, was the provider for Packwood on this occasion.
Packwood was also in the thick of it at the other end. The defender made a crucial interception when it looked like Rhys Healey was destined to score.
Shinnie was also ran the show. His first attempt saw his shot drift just wide of the visitor`s goal. His second attempt was even closer. On the thirty minute mark, he unleashed a vicious strike from thirty yards out. It flew through the air and smashed the crossbar. So that was twice in half an hour that the woodwork has prevented a Blues goal.
However, just before half time, the Blues luck seemed to have changed. It was created by James Fry who sent in a pin point cross onto the head of the ever present Truslove to put Birmingham City 1-0 up.
The half time score was 1-0. Alan Thompson made his first change at half time, McGee being replaced by Viv Solomon.
Three minutes into the second half, the scores were tied. An attack by the Blues ended in a turnover of possession. Healey, who always poached, beat Packwood for pace and slotted the ball past the helpless Doyle. 1-1 the score, with 48 minutes played.
Both sides really picked up the pace in the second half. Crisp passing was a feature of the game, with both teams really having a go.
The second Blues substitution saw Shinnie being replaced by Cogley in the sixty fifth minute.
As the hosts searched for a goal, Thompson made his final substitution of the game. Nasseri replaced Adams in the seventy seventh minute; a very attacking move by the manager.
The decision almost paid off as guess who hit the bar again? If you guessed Birmingham City, you would have been correct. On the seventy eighth minute, Truslove was the next player to thump the bar. Neat build up play by the substitute, Solomon, ended in a ferocious shot by Truslove from twenty five yards out. The crossbar yet again, kept the Blues from scoring.
Heartbreak for the Blues occurred in the last minute of stoppage time at the end of the game. A game of pinball occurred in the hosts` penalty box and Ben Watson fired home the ball to capitalize on the scramble.
Three times unlucky upon hitting the woodwork and then to go on and lose in the dying moments will surely be disappointing for the lads. But plenty of positives in terms of both performance and spirit showed.
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