Birmingham 0-2 Brentford: Player Ratings

Birmingham City’s inconsistent run of form continued, with yet another poor performance following a promising performance in their previous game. This, alongside the lack of goals in the team, is a severe concern that Steve Cotterill really needs to address if he is going to have any success as Birmingham City manager. Here are my player ratings from the game.

Starting XI

Kuszczak – 6

Throughout the first half it was once again Tomasz Kuszczak keeping Blues in the game, like he has done so often in recent weeks. He made some very good saves on the many occasions that Brentford were able to walk through the Blues defence.

Colin- N/A

Was unfortunately taken off after 9 minutes with a hamstring injury – a real concern for Blues.

Morrison – 5

I’m not sure what’s happened to the Blues captain this season, but it’s certainly not good. He seems to lack any consistency in his performances, he doesn’t look half as solid as he did last season, and he’s causing Blues to leak goals. I honestly think he should be taken out of the team, his performances recently do not resemble those of a club captain.

Roberts – 6

A solid enough performance from Marc Roberts, he’s slowly adapting to the left hand side of the defence, although I do think that he should be playing on the right hand side. His long throw in is always a threat in this division, which gives Blues a new attacking dimension going forward.

Grounds – 7

Jonathan Grounds has always been made to be a scapegoat in recent years, but I think over the last month he is really showing how solid he is in this division. Since he has come back into the team under Steve Cotterill he has been one of Blues’ best performers. Against Brentford he produced another very good defensive performance, making some crucial last ditch interceptions.

Davis – 5

Yet again, another Birmingham City game finished and I leave the ground wondering what use David Davis has been to the team… He has been really disappointing this season after how good he was last season. During the Brentford game he was mainly a passenger, making no real impact on the game.

Man of the Match: Kieftenbeld – 8

Considering that 3 months ago Blues were prepared to sell Kieftenbeld for less than £1 million, his turnaround has been fantastic.  Alongside Jonathan Grounds he has been Blues most consistent performer, and was yet again the best player on the park. He nearly put Blues ahead with a wonderful 30 yard strike, and controlled the midfield in the second half. Was rather unbelievably subbed by Cotterill, which lead to a few boos.

N’Doye – 7

If there’s one area of Cheikh N’Doye’s game that you will never be able to criticise, it’s his work rate. Throughout yesterday’s game he was chasing down everything, closing down the Brentford midfield, and helped to get Blues going at times. Unfortunately his quality on the ball let him down a few times but overall it was a good performance.

Jota – 6

Coming up against his old side, Jota tried to make an impression on the game but struggled. He got on the ball a few times in the first half but at no stage did he ever look like he was going to break down the Brentford back line, although I think Cotterill taking him off was a mistake. With Jota on the pitch there is always a chance of scoring goals.

Maghoma – 5

It was another one of those games for Jacques Maghoma that should have ended a lot sooner than it did. I will never ever be able to understand what went through Steve Cotterill’s mind when he decided to take Jota off and leave Maghoma on, despite Maghoma having one of his least effective games for a while.

Adams – 6

If ever there was any proof needed, this was the game for Steve Cotterill to see that you can not play Che Adams on his own up front. You couldn’t fault his effort at any stage during the evening, but unfortunately the ball just wouldn’t stick for him. Everytime he was able to bring the ball down he was surrounded by 2/3 Brentford players.

Subs:

Cotterill – 7

I never ever thought I would see the day where David Cotterill would be playing in defence for Birmingham City, and if I’m completely honest, he actually did very well. He looked a little suspect at times positionally, but managed to make a few important tackles and actually won a couple of header. It’s no surprise that most of the stuff we created came through Cotterill, he crossing has certainly been missed!

Gallagher – 5

I really don’t see how Steve Cotterill can justify playing Sam Gallagher out wide ahead of the likes of Jeremie Boga. This was the second game in a row where Gallagher as came on out wide and unfortunately, despite his best efforts, he was largely ineffective.

Jutkiewicz – N/A

Came on too late to have any real impact on the game.

Fans

Attendance: 19,045 (760 Away fans)

Brenford Fans – 6

Not massive in numbers but Brentford fans made a fair bit of noise compared to other team that have visited St Andrews this season. No doubt the atmosphere was increased with them coming up against some of their former players. I think it’s safe to say that they’re not too keen on Harlee Dean…

Posted: 3 November 2017