Brave Blues battle for stalemate at WolvesLeave a comment
November 3, 2014 by bluenosebible
Wolverhampton Wanderers 0-0 Birmingham City
Written by: Oliver Osborn
Birmingham City picked up their first point under new boss Gary Rowett in a goalless derby against Wolves.
After last weeks 8-0 defeat to Bournemouth, Blues were able to pick up their first clean sheet away from home since February with a solid defensive performance and just lacked a cutting edge up front to pick up all three points.
Both sets of strikers will be disappointed not to have won the game for their side, but a draw was probably a fair result at the full time whistle.
Rowett made four changes to the side that lost heavily last week including handing a start to Michael Morrison, who joined on loan from Charlton Athletic the day before.
It was the home side applying the pressure early on as Kenny Jackett’s side were looking to extend their unbeaten run to five games.
But it was Blues who created the first clear cut chance as teenager Koby Arthur smashed an effort into the side netting from a tight angle.
David Cotterill’s free kick was poorly dealt with and the ball fell kindly to Arthur, but the winger went for power over placement and couldn’t open the scoring.
Not long after and as half-time approached, Clayton Donaldson was put through on goal following former Wolves’ midfielder David Davis’ interception from Kevin McDonald.
The striker had just Wolves’ goalkeeper Carl Ikeme to beat and fired his shot just past the near post when it should really have been at least on target.
After the interval, the home side came out of the traps quicker than their opponents and had a big penalty appeal turned down by referee Anthony Taylor.
A cross from the right by James Henry was blocked by what appeared to be the arm of Jonathon Grounds just inside the penalty box, but Taylor waved away the protests.
The left back then went close to giving Blues the lead on the hour mark with a header from David Cotterill’s corner, but his effort was well saved by Ikeme.
Bakary Sako and Dave Edwards were brought on by Kenny Jackett and his side put pressure on the Blues’ defence for the majority of the final stages.
McDonald had a low shot fizz just past the post from long range and goalkeeper Darren Randolph made a brilliant reaction save to deny Edwards with a header from five yards out.
The Irishman was again at hand to save an effort from Leon Clarke late on with his foot and the rebound was poorly sliced over the bar by Sako.
It was a huge turnaround defensively by Birmingham from their previous match with plenty of positives to take home as well as a point to move them up to third bottom and a point away from safety.
Blues entertain league leaders Watford on Tuesday night at St. Andrew in Rowett’s first home game in charge while Wolves travel to Ipswich.
Wolves boss Kenny Jackett:
“We huffed and puffed and we had a lot of the ball but we didn’t do enough going forward in the final third.
“It didn’t surprise me the way they set up, playing 4-5-1. But it was down to us to break them down.
“As for the penalty shout, sometimes you get them, sometimes you don’t. It could have gone either way.”
Birmingham City boss Gary Rowett:
“It’s been a fresh start this week. Last week’s result really wasn’t mentioned. It’s all been about looking forward and I’m very pleased with what I saw.
“I didn’t expect us to come and keep a clean sheet at Molineux. But I’d certainly have taken that. It’s something to build on now.
“Most of our focus this week has been working on our defensive shape and structure, but we also broke into some good areas and, with a bit more composure, that could have have brought us something.”
Starting line up: Randolph; Caddis, Morrison, Robinson, Grounds; Gleeson, Davis, Shinnie (Reilly 66′), Cotterill, Arthur (Shea 64′); Donaldson (Thomas 77′)
Subs not used: Doyle, Hall, Eardley, Brown,
Man of the match: Michael Morrison