Paul Caddis will miss the Christmas fixtures with the hamstring injury he picked up against Palace but Hayden Mullins is available again after suspension.
Burnley have defender Michael Duff and midfielder Chris McCann available who were suspended for their last match.
Blues won 3-1 at Burnley in early April, a victory that helped to secure their place in the playoffs. Goals in the last fifteen minutes by Jordon Mutch and David Murphy added to Marlon King’s first half opener.
Blues remain in 19th having gained only five points from their last six games. They have only managed four wins from their eleven home games so far.
Burnley are 16th, four points ahead of Blues. They are also on a run of one win in six and have only recorded three away victories all season.
Dear Santa. For Christmas this year I would like to see my team win at home and gain a crucial three points. I’d also like to see them play well for a full ninety minutes but that’s probably too much to ask. Last week was another case of waiting for us to go well behind before starting to play but at least against the league leaders getting a point is acceptable. I would be surprised if we give Burnley that much respect as other than Charlie Austin they have nothing to scare us. Austin is having quite a season with twenty two goals and the fact that the next best player has got only four shows how much they rely on him. So stop Austin and stop Burnley or more likely we’ll let him get one then look to get two.
Last week’s fight back had a number of positives not least of which was the midfield pairing of Papa Bouba Diop and Calumn Reilly. Diop was immense all game and while I wasn’t sure about Reilly at first he did get better as the game went along. I would keep the same midfield again but I suspect that Lee Clark won’t do that. I would be disappointed if Diop was dropped for the returning Mullins although I would accept if Morrison came in for Reilly to give us more going forward. It’s nice to see young players getting a chance even if it in our case it is mostly forced on us. Despite his goal I’d still rather see Zigic start from the bench. He’s still only a twenty minute a game footballer for me. I was quite impressed with Mitch Hancox last week and would be happy for him to come in if Paul Robinson has to swap over to right back again.
Looking ahead to the other matches over the Christmas period Boxing Day brings the rematch with Barnsley where we will be hoping to get revenge for the 5-0 thumping in September. Since that match they have been on a terrible run and have only won one game. There are stuck in the bottom three so victory there will increase our gap to the danger zone. It’s too much to expect us to repay the 5-0 but any victory will be welcome. After that we visit Bolton who are another of the relegated sides that have been struggling to bounce straight back up. Six to seven points over the period is definitely achievable and would put us in a good position to push on in the second half of the season. I think we can start with three points tomorrow.
Blues 2 Burnley 1
C’mon you Blue Boys.