Those of you that indulge me by reading my musing on matters all things blue will know that I usually make a comment regarding the journey to St Andrews which this week included my son Ben and Will my mate who picked both of us up at Guildford station. Our other companion was little Will, Will’s little boy and we all proceeded up the M40 to meet up with Will’s brother, Chris at Baginton. The only member of our usual gang that was missing was little Jack who was flying back from Canada where he had been on a school rugby tour. We called in on an elderly friend in King’s Heath who hadn’t been very well but is now on the mend. Will decided to go off and get us all some potato scallops. Now, I don’t know about you but I love scallops so much that I almost have to consider getting a room when I’m with one! Apparently, Will asked for low salt, low fat scallops in the shop and was told that they had just run out! Really? As Chris pointed out, scallops are fast food at its best! We went from there to St Andrews and enjoyed a couple of pints in the George before picking up some pork with stuffing and salad in a bap at the Cookhouse. That is as far as the day went in terms of enjoyment.
I will keep the rest of this report very short because it is too depressing to do otherwise. This was an abject performance against a poor Burton side that under most circumstances would be there for the taking. Woeful though we were we should have been ahead through Jutkiewicz who missed an absolute sitter after only four minutes in front of a completely open goal when the Burton keeper fumbled the ball and presented the big man with the whole goal to aim at from 18 yards out. Less than five minutes gone it was to prove costly as Burton grew into the match and scored a goal that should have been so easily prevented when Kusczcak dropped a routine ball resulting from poor defending from Bielick and even then we had two opportunities to clear before at the third time of asking Burton accepted the gift via who else? Lloyd Dyer. The writing was on the wall and all it took was another piece of abject defending from a corner early in the second half which led to yet another concession for 0-2. We never looked like we could score and we became increasingly clueless as the game wore on. We even nearly made it 3-0 ourselves when Keita hit his own post in a desperate lunge to prevent his man gaining a one on one with second half substitute goalkeeper Legzdins. Gardner also got the hook at half time replaced by Kerim Frei. The whole thing smacked of a dressing room showdown probably with Kusczcak sustaining some damage.
This was a truly dismal performance against a very poor Burton side who beat us because they were organised and we weren’t. An hour and a half after the game Zola announced he had resigned. We have three games left and frankly I cannot see us getting another point which means my friends that we are going down. Given that we have failed to beat Rotherham and Burton Albion in the last two games, we deserve to! I am not going to attempt to provide a score for the players or stats on the game because with the exception of Che Adams, none were worthy of the consideration.
The Good: Birmingham City Ladies made it to the FA Cup Final at Wembley on May 13th. Well done girls. I will be there to cheer you on!
The Bad: Everything about this performance; where do you want to start?
The Ugly: The crowd turning on Panos Pavlakis in the directors box. He left twenty minutes from the end to a cacophony of boos and we all suspected then that Zola was gone. It would appear that that was the case since the manager resigned just after 6 pm.
Birmingham City: Tomasz Kusczcak (Adams Legzdins 45) Emilio Nsue (Jacques Maghoma 54) Ryan Shotton, Jonathan Grounds, Krystian Bielik, Cheick Keita, Robert Tesche, Craig Gardner (Kerim Frei 45) David Davis, Craig Gardner, Lukas Jutkiewicz.
Subs not used: Mikael Kieftenbeld, Jerome Sinclair, Paul Robinson, Stephen Gleeson.
Yellow cards: Keita, Adams
Burton Albion: Jon McLaughlin (Stephen Bywater 29) BenTurner, Kyle McFadzean, John Brayford, Lloyd Dyer (Damien McCrory 90+1) Jackson Irvine, Luke Murphy, Lasse Vigen Chritensen, Tom Flanagan, Luke Varney (John Mousinho 87) Lucas Adkins
Subs not used: Matty Palmer, Michael Kightly, Tom Naylor, Cauley Woodrow
Goals: Dyer 36, Adkins 52.
Yellow cards: Irvine.
Referee: Peter Bankes: Less said the better; as poor as the game itself but at least he was consistently poor for both sides.
Attendance: 19,794 (most of whom deserved better!)