Burton Albion v Birmingham: Preview

Birmingham City make the short journey up to the town of Burton upon Trent to play Nigel Clough’s Burton Albion.

Build Up

This week has seen Blues already play 2 matches at home, beating Bristol City 2-1 on Saturday and depending on your view, holding or being held, to a goalless draw with Bolton on Tuesday evening. 4 points is a decent tally from those 2 games, especially when you consider that Blues have lost Che Adams, David Davis, Michael Morrison AND Cheikh N’Doye to injury or illness during those 2 games.

Just to rub salt in to those wounds, Harry is clearly frustrated at the lack of bodies incoming

This week has seen yet more talk about Aden Flint, who’s future is still in doubt, although Bristol City manager Lee Johnson has bizarrely stated that if Flint “swears allegiance to the flag and badge and tells everyone he loves Bristol City” that he still has a future at Bristol City. If Bristol City’s supposed valuation of £10m is genuine, then I would expect Blues to look elsewhere, and rightly so.

There has also been lots of talk about Ogenyi Onazi. Late last week there was interest, early this week he was following BCFC on social media, midweek a deal was all agreed and just awaiting a work permit, this was then rejected and appealed, then finally he unfollowed Blues on social media and our efforts were once again fruitless.

Burton Albion Preview

The search for bodies goes on with ex-Blackburn midfielder Jason Lowe being the latest player mentioned, and we understand Sebastien Bassong is now on trial at the club.

The better news for Blues going in to this game however is that Chiek N’Doye’s scan doesn’t seem to have shown any serious damage, David Davis’ virus has now cleared and he can play. Michael Morrison will play if possible after his broken nose and Ryan Shotton, who’s wife was pregnant, should be available after welcoming their new baby. Che Adams is still Blues’ main injury doubt and will miss the game with the hamstring injury he picked up against Bristol City.

Opposition Opinion

We got in touch with Burton fan and sports writer Jason Rodgers for his opinion on Burton’s season so far and his views on the upcoming game:

To say Burton’s season hasn’t gone to plan so far would be an understatement. Club-record signing Liam Boyce suffered a cruciate ligament injury in pre-season and is out for the season, whilst other transfer targets, including Cauley Woodrow, have failed to materialise.

The Brewers are without a point so far – albeit having played tricky fixtures against Cardiff, Hull and Middlesbrough. The team have defended pretty well for the most part, and were well in the game against Hull until Jackson Irvine was sent off for a petulant second yellow.

Friday’s game is already seen as a key fixture by many Burton fans. Failure to pick up any kind of result against Birmingham could see the Brewers quickly cut adrift at the bottom of the table, making it even harder to sign players before the end of the window. Expect a rousing atmosphere at the Pirelli Stadium tomorrow night.

Jason Rodgers, Burton Albion Supporter

Previous Meetings

Blues and Burton don’t have a massive list of previous meetings, with the only 2 competitive meetings coming last season. However both of those games were notable, for different reasons.

Friday 21 October 2016 – Championship

Burton 2 – 0 Blues

The first ever competitive meeting between Blues and Burton also took place on a Friday night at the Pirelli Stadium last year. Then Blues, former Burton and now Derby manager Gary Rowett, took his Blues side to his previous club with Blues fans having high hopes of returning with 3 points. However after a first, fairly positive, 15 minutes or so, Blues seemed to become complacent and deservedly ended up losing the game 2-0, getting only 1 shot on target. Burton’s goals coming from former Blues loanee Lloyd Dyer and Jamie Ward.

Monday 17 April 2017 – Championship

Blues 0 – 2 Burton

The second meeting of last season was more eventful after the game than during it, with the result signalling the end of Gianfranco Zola’s reign at St Andrews. Patience ran out for Blues fans after throwing away a win against Rotherham on the Friday the first real “We want Zola out” chants were really heard, however he stayed, and Blues slumped to yet another defeat under the pint sized Italian, who then faced the same chants, for the first time from his home fans.

After the game, there was no interview for the waiting press which prompted rumours of either a resignation or a sacking. These rumours were confirmed shortly after, followed the next day by the appointment of current boss, Harry Redknapp.

Once again Lloyd Dyer opened the scoring, Lucas Akins doubling the lead in the second half.

Played for Both

Adam Legzdins

The now *AHEM* Premier League stopper (sorry, couldn’t resist) started his career at Blues before moving to Burton in 2010 when they were in League 2. He became a big favourite with the Burtonians, picking up both Supporters’ Player of the Year and Players’ Player of the Year. Unfortunately for Legzdins, his return to Birmingham wasn’t as impressive and he never really claimed the place as his own.

Callum Reilly

Former Blues youth product and hot prospect Reilly managed to make 60 appearances for Birmingham during a time where funds were scarce and youth was important.Reilly was loaned to Burton by then Blues manager Gary Rowett, however after 2 games, picked up an injury which essentially cut short his loan. Released by Blues at the end of that season,Reilly then joined Burton permanently only making 15 appearances before being loaned out to Coventry and at the start of this season, rejoining up with former manager Lee Clark at Bury.

Lloyd Dyer

Dyer joined Blues on loan from Watford on 19 Jan 2015 with many Blues fans excited of the prospect of a player with pace who creates and scores goals. What Blues fans hoped for and got however, were very different things. Dyer didn’t enjoy the best of times at Blues, and most Blues fans didn’t enjoy his time at St Andrews either. Dyer however clearly loves playing against Blues, as mentioned above has scored in both of his games against Birmingham for Burton. Some things are just not meant to be.

Mark Duffy

Blues signed Duffy after triggering a release clause in his Doncaster contract, however Duffy only every played 4 games for Blues. He was then loaned out to Burton in their promotion season from League 1 as runners-up. He was selected in the PFA League One Team of the Year scoring 8 goals and creating plenty of assists, however when Blues released him at the end of the season, newly promoted Burton didn’t take him on permanently and he subsequently joined Sheffield United.

Chris Goulding is a web developer and graphic designer from Solihull who has spent a large percentage of his life as a BCFC season ticket holder.

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