March 31, 2014 by bluenosebible
Birmingham City 2-4 Bournemouth
Written by: Oliver Osborn (The Bluenose Bible)
The home hoodoo continues to 15 without a league win for Birmingham City after a clinical Bournemouth gave themselves an outside chance of a play-off push.
A brace from Lewis Grabban as well as goals from Matt Ritchie and Ian Harte gave the Cherries a four goal lead, but a Federico Macheda double cut the deficit to two goals.
Despite the Cherries scoring three in the opening half hour, the home side started brightly and could have taken the lead with a bit of luck.
But while Jordan Ibe was replacing his boots, Bournemouth took advantage of the numerical advantage thanks to an opener from Matt Ritchie.
The winger was unmarked at the back post and connected well with Lewis Grabban’s cross, volleying home from six yards out.
After providing the first goal, Grabban poached the second at the back post as Marc Pugh’s cross from the left was poorly dealt with, leaving Grabban with the easiest of tap ins.
The striker dusted himself off and fired high into top right corner for his 19th goal of a successful season for the 26-year-old.
Lee Clark’s side looked to start a comeback with half time looming to give themselves a chance to gain something from the match, but a goal didn’t look likely, especially with the away side defending solidly.
Even after the interval the goals kept coming, although the fourth was one of the highest quality.
Former Ireland international, Ian Harte picked up the ball close to the corner flag before beating Callum Reilly and hit a stunning effort into the opposite corner of the goal.
Even with a few fans leaving by this time, Birmingham kept looking for a goal to make the defeat look less embarrassing and finally got a goal through substitute Federico Macheda.
Macheda then followed his goal up with another after the striker stole the ball from Steve Cook and hit a great effort from outside the box that nestled into the bottom corner.
Efforts from Lee Novak and Ibe went close, but the home side couldn’t pull back unlikely comeback.
With another defeat at St. Andrews and no home match until Easter Monday, the Blues have now gone six and a half months without a home win, sitting just five points clear of the bottom three after Barnsley’s win at Yeovil.
Meanwhile, Bournemouth now look set to be in the chasing pack for the top six after the five sides above them all failed to win, meaning they sit just five points behind sixth placed Reading.
Birmingham manager Lee Clark: “We scored twice at home and do not get a point. This tells me where we have to improve massively.
“The goals sent us tumbling and knocked us for six. We knew they would be a threat down the wings and it was so disappointing.”
Bournemouth boss Eddie Howe on his side’s play-off hopes: “It is going to be difficult. If you look at the clubs above us, their destiny is in their hands not ours.
“They are the team with experience but if we carry on the way we are playing and showing a fearless attitude, then who knows what we are capable of achieving.”
Starting line up: Randolph; Spector, Martin (Lovenkrands 79′), Robinson, Blackett; Caddis, Reilly; Burke, Shnnie (Macheda 34′), Ibe; Zigic (Novak 56′)
Subs not used: Doyle, Lee, Ferguson, Rusnak
Man of the match:Lewis Grabban