Manish Bhasin presents live coverage from St Andrew's as Birmingham take on Leicester in a Midlands derby, with Robbie Savage and Steve Claridge.
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A tale of two cities as Birmingham take on Leicester in the NPower
Championship, for Birmingham 2011 has been the best of times.
Birmingham City have won the Carling Cup.
And the worst of times. Their first trophy in 48 years was followed by
relegation from the Premier League and a sale of players as financial
troubles hit. Now Chris Hughton is the man chosen to arrest the slide
at St Andrews. For Leicester it's great expectations. Sven-Goran
Eriksson was one of the summer's big summer spenders. After a
stuttering start, Sven-Goran Eriksson's men are starting to hit
their stride. Leicester's evening just gets
better and better. Well, it's seven games unbeaten in
It's another busy week for Chris Hughton's side. The Blues are off
to Bruges later. Today it's domestic matters that take
centrestage. Kick-off is less than ten minutes
away. Hopefully some tasty fare for you
this lunchtime, ready to tuck in for twous men who have represented
both clubs, Steve Claridge and hot off the dance floor for a bit of
cha-cha-chat. You found it funnier in rehearsal! Birmingham first of
all, difficult to judge where they are. Eight games in, what have you
gauged from them so far? It's difficult to know where to pick.
One lost, one draw. It was a big win at Forest, no doubt about that.
They've games in hand. This division, if you win a couple of
games it can shoot you up the table. They could be level with teams in
play-offs. It's not been a disastrous start, there's room for
improvement. Inconsistency comes up when you look at the results.
inconsistent. They've a fantastic manager, good players but very
inconsistent start from Chris Hughton. Leicester, they made a
stuttering start as we saw then, but we saw the potential of this
expensively assembled side last time against Derby. This is the art
of good management, getting the best out of what the players you
have got. We knew they were underachieving earlier on in the
season. The first two games he made nine changes. I think it might be
an unchanged line-up today from the Derby game. So, now things are
starting to settle down we know if it settles down and they get it
right they're going to be the team to beat. You shared the bookies
view at the start of the season to go up, are you sticking by that?
This is how the teams lie. Birmingham are down in 18th but
with three games in hand, most of their rivals. Let's hear from both
managers. How difficult has it been for you
here because you have had to sell some of your best players to be
fair? The difficulty has really been the timing. When I took the
job, I knew that I would lose players, but we lost two players on
transfer deadline day. I think the difficulty has been working around
the timing of those that have gone. But as I said, I knew what was
happening, I knew I would lose players. We have brought in good
players. There's a good spirit here at the moment. We are delighted to
have gone through the transfer when everybody is more settled and
hopefully that will show in some of our performances. The last time we
spoke you were about to play Nottingham Forest, you did well.
You have put a great run together, you must be delighted with the
team? Lately we have been doing very well. We have been very solid.
Good defending. Four clean sheets the last four games in the League.
Of course we are happy. But it's a long way to go. I really hope we
can go on like we have done lately, because we starting to look like a
good football team. It shows how times have changed
here at Birmingham, if you take the Carling Cup winning line-up from
February this year, only four of them remain. Only six of the 18-man
squad that day are still at St Andrews. It's another tough job for
Chris Hughton. Just like he did at Newcastle, he
has steadied the ship, at least. don't think there's massive
pressure like in a normal year, I think it's one of those where like
with both managers, they're still yet to find the best system, to
find the best team. I think there's room for improvement, they've a
squad that can be competitive. do you see the game going, Robbie?
I am going for Leicester, they're a good team. For me they have to get
promoted. Steve? I am going for a draw. OK. Well, let's get to our
commentary team. What can you tell us?
Thank you, good afternoon everyone. There is an element of the haves
against the have Notts with this fixture. It's belt-tightening
Birmingham against big spenders Leicester.
Relegation and boardroom difficulties have hit home hard.
While Leicester have spent millions top table for seven years now and
they even dropped into the third tier three years ago. This is the
first meeting between the two clubs in four years since Birmingham won
away at Leicester in April of 2007 by two goals to one.
Leicester have a pretty good record here at St Andrews in recent years,
they haven't lost any of their last seven visits, winning four and
for this one. Sven-Goran Eriksson managing a club very much on the up.
Of course a former England manager, and Steve McLaren the manager of
Nottingham Forest, left the club following defeat to Birmingham
weeks ago. Chris Hughton trying to make life difficult for Sven-Goran
the line, back in the team today. Increasingly warm afternoon in the
West Midlands after a decidededly Leicester than at the moment in
this corner of Birmingham. The team seven matches unbeaten and haven't
conceded a goal for over a month so no price they haven't tinkered with
starting to mould this side in the fashion he would like has made the
most of the last weeks with the Leicester City on the left of the
picture. Mills was a signing for the club over the summer from
Reading. Martin, I know you are interested in seeing how he is
settling in and playing alongside Bamba. He is very, very cultured,
clearly has leadership skills. Sven-Goran Eriksson has identified
that very quickly. 25 years of age, you wonder what age are you
maturing at, he should be coming into the best form of his career.
Surprised none of the Premiership teams went for him. The referee
there in the middle, he has shown one red card in a dozen football
the centre circle because Birmingham City are preparing to
pay tribute to a special young supporter, 11-year-old Harry
Moseley who died last week after a courageous fight against an
inoperable Britain tumour. He raised over �500,000 during his
illness for cancer charities and the minutes applause you are about
to hear is the club's tribute to Andrews today, as guests of the
club. A minute's applause for an
incredible young man who will be in the hearts with everyone connected
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do the same next week at their home match against West Bromwich Albion.
Final words ahead of this game. We are almost ready to go now. Chris
Wood, comes into the starting line- up today. Seven in eight league
appearances so far, including two last time out in the 3-1 win at
Nottingham Forest. He has been a great addition. Saw him in the
World Cup, of course, only a young man. Maybe he might grab the goals
they need today. It's Leicester City who are playing
all in white today who will get us under way.
And finally we have kicked off here in this NPower Championship match,
live from St Andrews, Birmingham City against Leicester City in a
Midlands derby. Ridgewell winning the throw-in for Birmingham on the
far side of the field, one of the few few -- players still here after
the relegation last May. Did go on the transfer list in August, but it
left. He has played in the centre as well this season under the new
managerment we are expecting to see him out wide this afternoon. First
touch for the Captain back in the Birmingham's Spanish central
defender able to get there first. He made his debut last time in the
win at Nottingham Forest, one of only two players signed for a fee
this past summer. Comfortable for the goalkeeper
Myhill. On a season loan, which saw Ben Foster go in the other
direction. Birmingham still settling in to
their stride really, Martin. They've played eight matches so far
because of their Europa League commitments, three less than
anybody else. Difficult to find a rhythm and they've fallen behind a
little in the League. Leicester, a lot of attention on them, they'll
be the team that plays the football today, I feel. Vassell here for
Leicester. Doesn't quite find King. Vassell used to play up the road
for Aston Villa. Still got good pace. You see that, you make that
difference in this game. Danns actually won promotion with the
club. Here is Vassell, playing for Sven-Goran Eriksson again, with him
for England and Manchester City. is a good type to have in the
dressing rooms as well, excellent World Cup himself last summer with
the Ivory Coast, of course. A very good team actually, Derek is a calm
individual and I am sure they create an environment for them to
thrive in. It's all about promotion, that's the push for them to get
back into the big time. For Sven, the last time he won anything, you
got to go back to 2000, he will be desperate to win this Championship,
a long way off at the moment, but you feel they're coming into form
now. So far so good for Leicester City,
seven matches unbeaten now. 12th in the table which on the face
of it doesn't look overly exciting, but it's still so early they will
be into the play-off positions if they win today. There is a pressure
for both teams to keep winning and getting points. What about that man,
Chris Hughton? He has walked into a little bit of a mine field here. He
lost 20 players in the summer. He has had a lot of business to do and
I think he will do well. Good experience, particularly in the
Championship. Birmingham City's throw-in. Ridgewell is the man who
runs across to take it. Interesting point about Chris Hughton, the
goalkeeper saying that they appreciate the fact that it is him
doing the coaching on the training pitch, so it's really one voice
they're getting. There's no mixed messages from various people. They
know what the manager wants because he is there telling them. Yeah,
managers do it in different ways, he has been a good coach and
assistant so he is hands-on and it takes time. I am sure he will do
the run there of King. Looking for Ireland international for
Birmingham. Lovely touch there from Burke. Well, the end product didn't
match the build-up but it was a nice passage of play. Just not
enough power on the shot. He shows good endeavour. Gets past a few
Leicester players and not the power on his left foot to go with that
run. Burke is in good form. Scored moment than he was for the past 12
strayed offside by a step or two. A good education -- decision from
Finds King. Now Danns. Will get a freak for -- free kick for that
challenge. They pass it around lovely, Leicester. They're very
composed. Playing into midfield, very comfortable. That's a definite
free kick. An untidy challenge more than anything else. Here is Vassell.
Peltier. Struggling to get it away from
under his feet. The challenge came from Ridgewell. He likes to get
forward Peltier. You see him down that right side, that's usually
where the which hadth comes from. They have good competition for
places. Peltier at the moment is keeping an international player out.
It's about having a strong squad as well. It's a long campaign,
particularly in this Championship trying to get out. It comes down to
the strength of the squad. That's not where the infringement took
place where he is taking the kick. It matters not, it was a confident
catch from Myhill. 28-year-old, born in California who
qualifies for Wales through his mother. He was on the bench for
them in Switzerland on Tuesday. It's nice to see your goalkeeper
taking that, particularly if you are a central defender. Nice and
Interestingly central defensive could be a problem for them.. I
feel they need to get tighter to this Leicester team. They're not
putting enough pressure on them. Mills looking for the run of
Vassell but comfortably dealt with. Swiftly off his line there, Myhill.
Banba able to get that one before it reached King. I don't think King
has been able to touch the ball here. Fernandes, on loan. Another
player who Sven-Goran Eriksson has worked with before. A few of those
throughout the side. You can see they have that technical element,
it's whether they can make it count. I would like to see the midfield
players get forward more. This fella usually does it. Fernandes.
Here is Mills. It was wildly optimistic from that
sort of range. He can now head back to his defensive position. He won't
be doing that again. Suitably chasted. He is 25, by now he should
realise that's not a strength in his game. This is in row Z I think.
You can relate to that! After 22, 23, I stopped doing that. It's a
big season for him. He got close to the Premier League in May with
Reading. He can get up there now with Leicester. He is going to have
a big say in that. He is definitely a leader and passes it nicely. He
has options when he gets the ball. So close to making it to the so-
called promised land last season, but Reading lost in the play-off
final. Here is Bamba. Unlucky there. Just
signed a new contract as well, recently. Ridgewell did well.
Beausejour. Fahey is available,. for Blues. It's good play down this
right side. Carr laying it out wide for Burke and Bamba puts it out for
a corner. He was in the Ivory Coast squad at the World Cup finals last
summer when -- Sven was the manager manager then.
Away by King. Fahey took a whack there.
Beausejour staying down and the referee was waiting to see whether
there was an advantage which accrued and and decided that wasn't
the case, so Birmingham are going to have a free kick here. Once he
sees him holding his leg in that manner he opts to stop the play.
Looks originally like he was going to let it go. King gets a talking
to. Let's look at this again. It's his trailing leg he catches,
Beausejour. Just catches him. Looks a bit nasty, but he is back on his
feet and taking this one. They're lining up at the far post!
Caldwell so close for Birmingham. That's the first decent effort on
goal in the match here. We are just waiting for it to ripple into the
back of the net there, with the view we have got really should be
putting that away. Fantastic ball in. He should be at least hitting
the target. He will be disappointed when he sees that later. Caldwell
yet another one of the new faces at St Andrews over the summer.
Arriving from Wigan. Here is King for Leicester at the other end.. It
will be Leicester's throw. I have to say I don't know about
you, Martin, but when Caldwell's head met the ball I thought it was
going in. He's done everything right except get the right
connection. His manager can't believe he hasn't put that away.
You wonder how many more of those chances you will get against
Leicester. I think we are in for a cracking game, both teams prepared
to play football. At the back they're giving opportunities away.
That's Chris Wood almost winning but nobody in the Leicester team
trying to get on the end of that cross. Look at him there. He is
second favourite. Still makes it. Interesting figure Vassell, back in
the English game after a year playing in Turkey which I think was
an adventure for him in one way and Gomis let it run and nearly gave it
away. Burke. And that wasn't the sort of
delivery that he was looking for. No. This game has been played
largely in midfield and when it comes to the final third you are
looking for a bit more quality. Just not got it there. Needs more
power there. We mentioned that chances might be
at a premium here this afternoon and I have to say that the game
going into it didn't have goals written all over it. Birmingham
have conceded one at home and Leicester have let in three at the
moment. They're both solid. If we are get one goal it might open the
thing up. Vassell just nodding off for a moment there. Fernandes
tested. Willing runners the front two of Leicester and that's going
to test them. He is having to use every every ounce of strength to
keep that one out. Nugent has missed a month of the season
already but he returned for the derby County match last time and
scored. He is testing the legs of Ibanez.
Danns with a corner kick and will get another chance to try again.
David Nugent, a player with Premier League experience, most recently
successful spell so far in his career was in the Championship with
Preston North End. Leicester putting pressure on here. Peltier
winning a corner kick. It's off the defence, but comfortable. Keith
Fahey, switching the play nicely. That is if Marlon King can keep it
in, and the card. He is yet to settle into the match, Marlon King.
He is surviving on scraps because he cannot get the ball to feet. I'm
sure eventually he will. That is the pressure Leicester are putting
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Birmingham under when they are in previously played for Sven-Goran
Eriksson at Manchester City. They have him on loan for the season at
David Newton -- David Nugent. could see he was standing offside,
but he looks isolated. Even if he takes the ball, it is a good run.
You just want to see more from the midfield trying to break forward.
The front players look isolated at times. Both teams seemed reluctant
Buck and quite keep it in. -- Chris in the Scottish Premier League --
there. A good job that Myhill read it because he was going to get on
the end of that. Nugent broke away and scored a goal in that fashion
against Derby County in the last match. He looks full of running
today, Nugent. As he came out to warm up, he was buzzing and that is
what strikers are about, when they are scoring, they are full of
Danns. As you mentioned, David Nugent looking lively so far. We
should not forget he has actually play for England. Exactly. As a
young man playing for the Under 21 as he looked like he had a massive
future ahead of him. Lost his way a bit. Didn't quite happen for him in
the Premier League. At Portsmouth it didn't happen. He will feel he
still has something to prove and Leicester can cash in on it.
flag is up against Marlon King. Leicester City free kick. King with
just one goal so far this season miss Read the flight of it. If he
gets a good touch, he is in on goal. He will be disappointed with that.
I think Nugent will feel he could have done better. The service from
Kasper Schmeichel from the back is fantastic. He should do better. You
are looking for those little bits of quality that get you your
Kasper Schmeichel. In case you're wondering and you weren't aware,
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yes, he is the son of the great opportunity from Beausejour to a
least get the ball Neill the Peltier air -- neo- at the penalty
be catching him, and that should be a free kick to the home team.
Ibanez getting across. He will know he has been in a game today. He
does well, actually, just enough Cup finals in Germany in 2006. He
was a deadline day arrival from West Bromwich Albion. Lots of
changes for the two clubs coming almost prepared to take this, but
you need to get three points on the board. Teams are running away with
the leak and they have to start going for it is the game goes on.
Leicester, the emphasis is on them. They are the away side and will
feel comfortable at the moment. They might think the game is there
for the taking, for whoever wants have made a relatively short
journey down the M60 nine to the West Midlands for this match-up and
now have great expectations and high hopes of the immediate years
to come for their side. They will certainly be hoping to get back
into the Premier League sooner rather than later. They have
incredible support. I played there at the end of my career. The away
fans singing is great for the guys out there. They will expect big
things now. A lot of money spent in Matt Mills up there. It is an
excellent turn and shot, isn't it? You're wondering if it is the
centre forward, but it is the centre half and in the end the
keeper makes a good save. A sturdy and Birmingham clear. That effort
fiercely struck from Matt Mills. A bit better than his previous
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Fernandes. You look at Leicester and you think, where is the width
coming from? You could like Swansea with Sinclair on one side and Dyer
on the other, they haven't got that sort of player out wide to create
the situations in wide positions. They play through the middle. When
they payIt is a problem, but Birmingham are doing enough to keep
from the Leicester City captain, Matt Mills. Typical centre-forward
getting in there, but he has good technique and we know that. The
keeper doing his job. It might well be a set piece where the first goal
comes from. Neither team it really wouldn't -- really willing to
commit men forward. Bamber and mills have been very comfortable in
the centre of the Leicester defence. comfortable. King certainly does
chip-in for goals with Leicester. Double figures in the past three
seasons. As you see from the move, he is the one most likely to break
forward. That is what you want. You want to see him coming in a bit
later. That is what they need, a midfielder willing to break forward
one goal in the last five games against Barnsley. They have not
read in trouble to any extent here. Just the heading opportunity for
Steven Holcomb -- Steven Caldwell. We talked before the game about the
manager find his best formation and system, this is the way he wants to
play and he is comfortable. But he is the away team and you think
Birmingham would be going for it a bit more that he can only play what
before trying to get on the end of surrounded and did his best to dig
the ball out. I don't think he was done any favours with the ball he
got. Quite a disjointed effort from Birmingham so far. A lack of
fluidity in the play. And I think the referee might have a little
word with Beausejour. He has taken him out there, hasn't he? Peltier
type of player, but he has Miss Read the flight and has gone
yellow card is waived in the general direction of the Chilean
I don't know if it was the knee or the Ford that catches him on the
chest. He can have no complaints about that. You might have been
worried he would get a red for that. I think it was the right decision
the doubt and say was the tackle of a man suffering from jet lag after
his trip to South America? Well, he was certainly flying through the
spicing up a little, not in the way the Beausejour did a few moments
ago. Lacking a spark of a mind. Birmingham lacking any real
touches early in the game, but he was run out of Davide Paul
Konchesky. That is not his strength. He is not renowned. He wants to
pass it and keep possession in a much a tour in this first half, and
Marlon King not troubling Kasper Schmeichel there at all. He has put
it into an area, but no one is going to get on the end of it.
There is no real purpose to that. 10 minutes or half time. -- until
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top level? A good touch there and you're through. It is that quality
in the final third. Look at the reaction of David Nugent as the
ball is played for at. He does look frustrated. It is about getting the
weight. It is on the move, and it is a hard technique, but you have
class, see his reaction in the games against Aston Villa. He is u
Palmer -- all very nice,, but no Birmingham team. The Senegalese
summer arrival from Dundee United. Konchesky's ball to Bamber. David
Nugent was waiting at the near post, and a good job that Cold War was
there to any behind. Nicely worked. -- Steven Caldwell was there.
Bamber is so good in the air and you cannot switch off, and that is
Sven-Goran Eriksson unsure he is frustrated. Just needs to improve
on it. Free-kick to Birmingham. Leicester City drew the last your
way. Their last were goalless draws need someone to keep those clean
hasn't he? And he wades in with his animated. He will be looking more
from the team as the match wears on, fouled, but Ridgewell using his
body well. You see it so many times, lean on your opponent. And it goes
bench if they want to change things. Nikola Zigic, the Serbian
internationally who scored in the Carling Cup final. David Murphy
also there, and the USA international Jonathan Spector. He
signed from West Ham over the summer. Colin Doyle, the reserve
goalkeeper for Birmingham. Dzinic comes on, you know what will
happen, it will be a long ball. -- towards Chris Wood who has been in
great form this season. But we have not had a chance to look at him
anywhere near the goal. It is easy for Bamber. Leicester's defence
coping very, very comfortably with Birmingham's for play. -- forward
play. They are all over you, like a rash. Both central defenders are
very dominant and animated. It is just in the final third where
Leicester need to improve and Birmingham not getting any change
and Carr. Konchesky has been penalised. I think he leaves a 14
on Carr. That is exactly what he wanted and now it is a free kick in
a wide position. This is dangerous was trying to take the free-kick
from a good 10 yards from where it was. It would have given him a
better angle, but not surprisingly creativity and ideas here. This is
a good Leicester City side and snooze, wasn't he? He's not the
gone to the ball he would have been in a decent position to control it.
They are heading for a couple of will be thinking this is a match to
be one today? Yes. Males playing too many long balls and it's a bit
predictable. I think if they can play through midfield -- Matt Mills.
They need to have players from the midfield wanting to break forward
can raise in wide position many have the full backs to create width
so you need to go through the added time. Will there be a
Leicester will certainly get the chance to put the ball in or around
the Birmingham penalty area. They will be looking for Matt Mills
she is getting Cabaye Liam Ridgewell, but he's using his body
well. Whether Ridgewell was impeding him or not, the delivery
is too long. He just boxer Marfan proximal. Good professional player.
-- he just blocks him off and shielded as Schmeichel comes out.
He has had a very quiet opening 45 minutes, Schmeichel, in the
Leicester City goal. I think he just showed he had kept his
Konchesky, but just not enough. A great run to end what has not been
a great opening 45 minutes. Stalemate is the word at St Andrews
as Chris Hughton's Birmingham City have struggled to make headway
against Leicester City. Steven Caldwell with the one headed
opportunity for the home side while, at the other end, Leicester City
captain Matt Mills testing Boaz Myhill at the near post with a
firmly hit shot from a tight angle. That is about it here. Honours even
Disappointing I think is an understatement. The most
entertaining thing we heard in that first half were the chants about
Robbie's two left feet. If I went down the local park on a Sunday
morning that's as bad as that. Worst half of football I have seen
for ages. What's going on, have they nullified each other?
Leicester having a lot of possession and not doing a lot with
it because they've no natural width and Birmingham not having any
possession to make an impression. The team that have the ball haven't
done enough with it and that's been Leicester. Birmingham had the first
two decent chances, we say chances! These were half-chances, we might
be scraping the bottom of the barrel here. Burke had the first
shot on goal. This almost set the tone for the first half. It's a
good run initially. You think he has done the hard work, he runs out
of ideas as to what he is going to do at the final point. He's worked
the angle, got past the two lads there. Has space but never really
sets himself for the shot. And then we have Caldwell's header. Simon
and Martin both thought the net would be ripping at one point. We
thought this was in. Best chance of the game, that's the only way teams
are going to score from a setpiece. That's a great ball there. Wood
could have headed that. You have to could in those situations, head it
back across goal. If you were a Birmingham fan you would want that
on the head of Chris Wood, he is been on form. He can see more of
the ball. He has set himself, either head that back or across.
Caldwell's always stretching for that. Now you have picked out a
definite pattern of play play here. That might also lead to why why
midfield, no doubt. They haven't any any real natural width. The
only thing you can do is play the ball into midfield and work the
ball and then the next ball has to be over the top. We see it here.
The ball goes wide here. Nobody outside of him. That has to go
inside. A third of the pitch is not available to you. Goes long. Always
been their out. They normally work it more than that before it goes
long. They'll play it into midfield and then look to get Vassell and
Nugent over the top, which is their strong point. They work the
channels. You get plenty of energy from them. We have not seen them
have any real chances. This is a tactic that's infuriating you,
Robbie, every time a ball gets hit long. To be fair, they are having a
lot of possession but in the final third of the pitch which Martin
related to in commentary, nobody's in the box. It's woeful! You are
asking the two forwards to get in the channels and get wide. What
happens then is you have to get people in the box to take their
place. Leicester are trying to play. Birmingham, I don't know what
they're doing. King and Wood, have they touched the ball? They've no
possession to do anything with. Leicester are dominating possession
but not doing anything with it. for Leicester's best chance, we saw
an effort from Mills, but this was much better from him. They've both
come from dead ball situations, one a corner and a a throw-in here.
This is more to do with probably poor defending than anything else.
Decent save. Also it's funny going into this game Peltier was speaking
to the press, he talked about Birmingham's danger from out wide.
And feeding balls up to the front men, we are not seeing that.
Burke's probably been their most dangerous player. Konchesky is
having a tough time against him. But we are scraping the barrel.
When you have four in midfield like that you have to tuck the wide men
in. You have to go four against four. Leicester will dominate you.
When they tuck themselves in and win the ball back they have to get
wide and that's where it's falling down. There's no natural width
instantly for Birmingham. They can't get themselves in the game.
OK. It was an important day in the Championship yesterday. Many of the
promotion contenders facing their rivals, we round up the games.
The big match this weekend in the Championship saw third-placed Derby
start here by Derby. Davis! Great save by the keeper and Robinson!
1-1. Fourth Derby corner. Davis with it.
It's a lovely cross. They're queuing up. Away off the line.
Derby survive as Lambert tried to tee up somebody wearing yellow.
Middlesbrough remain the only unbeaten side in the Championship,
although this draw against Millwall meant they missed out on the chance
to take top spot. Middlesbrough were in front, but Millwall
levelled. Halting a run of three defeats and moving out of the
bottom three. Although they so nearly lost. Had
this 95th minute effort gone in Middlesbrough would have moved to
the top of the table but they had to settle for a fourth successive
draw. West Ham moved up to second behind
Southampton after a comprehensive victory over Blackpool. Carew put
the Hammers in front. Blackpool conceded three more in the opening
ten minutes of the second half. It was 2-0 against a Blackpool team
who themselves scored five against highest quality.
West Ham scored a fourth. The seasiders haven't won at West Ham
for the seagulls since his move. He came close to a 7th.
Curran also struck the bar for the visitors who were unbeaten in their
last seven. Brighton, having started the season so well, now
haven't won in their last six. Michael chop ra was back on
familiar ground, having left Cardiff to move to Ipswich who had
won 2-0 here last season. Cardiff were in front, Cardiff have
scored in every game bar one so far this Wednesday.
But Jason Scotland equalised for the Suffolk side. Scotland was not
exactly a welcome visitor, given the fact he used to play for
Cardiff's rivals, Swansea. There's something about former players
coming back to old haunts and scoring. Chopra on the end of this
cross to put Ipswich 2-1 ahead. Cardiff salvaged a point from a
controversial penalty. Watch the Ipswich number seven.
Guilty of handball in the opinion of the officials. The Ipswich boss
disagreed saying his team had been robbed of victory. Whittingham
scoring from the spot kick to make it 2-2
both these teams have struggled this season. Coventry with only one
win in their opening ten league games, Nottingham Forest have lost
five of their previous six. There was little in the first half for
either set of fans to admire. Lee Camp kept Forest on level terms
with a superb save. But moments later the Forest keeper was beaten.
They now know the size of the task ahead at the ground.
That was yesterday, there was a big game in league one today, Sheffield
United took the lead today after 11 minutes.
Quinn scoring from the rebound. Wednesday came close, though.
Levelling things up when O'Grady also hit the woodwork.
But moments later it was United found the net when Evans headed in
a free kick to make it 2-0 at half- time. That was just half the story.
The second half the Wednesday comeback. Up popped Chris O'Grady
with seven minutes to go to reduce the arrears.
And Wednesday, who have had a terrific run of form of late,
winning the last four, snatched a dramatic draw.
A scramble. But it finally made it over the
early goal, a first minute. Van Persie put Arsenal ahead after 29
seconds, the fastest goal in the Premier League for four years. The
Gunners looking for their third league win of the season.
You will be able to see highlights of all of today's Premier League
games tonight at 10.00pm. Joining Colin will be the QPR manager with
Lee Dixon. Before that this afternoon the best of the action
from the gymnastic Championships. In the wake of yesterday's results
it's an interesting game with Derby and Southampton but a point each at
the end, but standout result has to be West Ham turning over Blackpool
in the way they did. Obviously, I think Ian Holloway won't be
enamered with the way they defended. West Ham - it's funny, I looked at
them before Saturday and thought they've had a few points where you
expect them to win games and dropped a couple of points, yet
they're on 18. You know, they're not far away from getting there.
Who has caught your eye in the Championship so far? You have to
look at Southampton and Brighton. Two teams done fantastically well.
Derby have done well. I think Derby probably overachieving this season,
they're doing exceptionally well. You look at that as a good point
against Southampton. They dominated a lot of that game. Southampton
went to Leicester and really tested Leicester so they're a good side.
We know their home form is second to none. They've come up and people
are starting to believe they can go and be there at the end of the
season. As for the game here, we are struggling for goals, it has to
be said. But we will be struggling to beat this blast from the past.
This is when the flares were wide Finds Burns. Burns going into the
gets the 6th goal for Birmingham City, if it comes, will be awarded
a motor car by a Midlands firm. There is Burns! That's number six.
I wonder how he will look in the seat of a TR7?
And that is what it looked like, for scoring the 6th goal of that,
35 years ago. Funnily enough, Kenny Burns sold that car not long after
and shared the proceeds with the rest of his players. I can't see
you doing that. Would you do something like that with the rest
of your team? No! You wouldn't, would you! I would give it to my
mum. It would depend what sort of car it was with Robbie. Quite
possibly. We are getting news that the referee, believe it or not, has
picked up an injury, that sums up the game after the first 45 minutes.
The second half is delayed by a couple of minutes. If you were
either a managers today, what would you be looking to do now to change
this? Put life into this contest! Leicester don't look as if they can
lose the game when you look. This is the new official in charge now,
Kevin Wright, going to be taking charge of proceedings. How is he.
He is as as -- -- - he is as bad as the game, awful! The earlier
question about the two managers, if you are Sven or Chris, what would
you be doing? Sven, they have been the better side. They've to create
chances. Birmingham have to get on the ball and making some impression
on the game. You are looking at it now and I am not sure, it's
difficult to see how the game can change, unless somebody takes a
risk. This is part of a busy day for Robbie, because you can find
out later if he survives the big one on BBC1 at 7.25pm this evening.
This was you last night. It was a very passionate tango. It suited me
because it looks like I have been tangoed! If one person can do
Strictly, let me tell you Steve Claridge, I have seen this guy
dance and he can move. He can throw a few shapes, I have been told. Did
this go as well as you would have hoped? I tried my best, I hope I
get saved tonight by the public. The response has been wonderful.
You know what, I love it. I love dancing, I am a dancer. I wouldn't
go that far! You have found it exhausting, interestingly enough.
must say, it's harder than than being a footballer. Let's see if we
can find dancing feet here. Let's get to the second half and rejoin
our comentators. Thank you. Just to reiterate we
have a change of official here for the second half. The referee for
the first 45 minutes, Graham's Salisbury, has pulled a calf muscle
there. He is going to be replaced by Kevin Wright who was the fourth
official, Graham Salisbury is going to hold the fort down there in
front of the dugouts until Trevor Massey turns up, Trevor we
understand was here as a guest and he will be now be the fourth
official. That's certainly ruined his lunch, hasn't it? I wonder
which calf that was? We know by now! The war wound certainly on
show. We will be hoping for a livier second half -- livelier
second half. It was a disappointing stalemate in the opening 45 minutes.
Stern words, no doubt, from the managers at half-time. The players
now need to take it upon themselves, I am sure there's been a talking to
at half-time. Sven will know he has the capabilities to win this game.
Birmingham will need to make changes if they want to mix it up,
maybe bring Zigic on. There is Kevin Wright heading out on to the
field with a rather different role facing him now for the second half
to that which he enjoyed in the first.
He is not in any rush, is he? won't be getting the earache from
the two managers during the second period, that's for sure. He can
have it from the 22 players instead. It's a leisurely entrance from our
new referee, it must be said. But it's probably the most dramatic
thing that's happened so far at St Andrews this afternoon. Probably
Nice if he could have a little jog, come on, ref, get a move on!
Birmingham's players have been standing out there for about five
minutes waiting for the start of the second half. At the end of this
leisurely stroll, we finally will get under way. He is just composing
himself, getting ready. Here we go then, Birmingham City will kick us
off for the second period. No changes made by either manager at
half-time. Watch is working. many watches does he have! So is
the other one. At last, the football match breaks
out out again. Fahey gets us under way. Mills with
a powerful header clear. I didn't notice the referee counting the
players on each side by the way. certainly had a sizable half-time,
it was over 20 minutes long. Plenty of time for the two managers to get
across whatever points they were thinking of. They've always had --
almost had too long, they need to revitalise. The game is there for
the taking, whoever wants to win it. It will be a Leicester throw-in.
Peltier will take it. What do you think Chris Hughton might have been
saying at half-time? I think he will have been looking to get more
from the front two. King has not been in the game at all. Get bodies
forward at every opportunity. They're trying to stay in the game
at the moment, Birmingham. No designs on going forward. You can't
do that in a football match, the home side you have to go and attack.
Good distance on that kick. What a thunderous shot from Beausejour!
Much better start to the second half from the home side.
The post is still rattling. Away by Mills. That's worken everybody --
woken everybody up! It's a stunning strike from Beausejour. Beausejour
played most of the first half as though he was in some sort of daze
but this was a cracking effort. Schmeichel no chance, and the frame
of the goal that saves him. Hopefully that's woken this game up.
Encouragement there for the home side, that effort from Beausejour.
Konchesky now for Leicester. Leicester all in white playing in
their changed strip today. You would think it's unlikely
Birmingham would play as badly in the second period as they did in
the first. They really didn't... It's a change of emphasis. It's
about being willing to get forward and brave enough to try and play
and it was there, it was a great effort.
Here is Chris Wood. Now Beausejour.
Buoyed by that effort of a minute or so ago.
Dangerous ball in. And the home side have a corner.
At last we have a noise inside St Andrews. Good pace and ability and
suddenly you are seeing a different diving in to try to get it away.
Birmingham looking threatening for the first time in the afternoon.
This is Marlon King. A bad first touch, down goes Beausejour. They
have a penalty here. The referee, Kevin Wright, who has
only been in charge for this match for under three and a half minutes
has awarded Birmingham City a penalty kick.
It's good pace from Beausejour. At first I am not sure whether he
actually makes contact. It's King retrieving defender. Does he make
contact with the ball? I think he does. From this angle? He is
probably unfortunate there because he makes contact with the ball and
Beausejour knows exactly what he is doing. I think he catches the
inside of Beausejour's foot there. he is willing to get into the box
and he asks questions of the defender. Chris Hughton knows even
though his team has this kick, it will mean nothing unless King
buries this chance. It would be his first goal of the
season in the Championship. It is! Marlon King for Birmingham City!
They lead Leicester by one goal to nil.
Pressure on him, of course. He puts it away simply. He has turned this
game on its head. Never for a moment thought Birmingham would
take the lead and now we are going to have to see what Leicester are
made of, see what character. He tucks it into the corner.
Beautifully placed, cool, calm, collected. Schmeichel, no chance.
It's a goal you didn't see coming for Birmingham. Start of the second
half with that Beausejour chance and fantastic effort from nothing
really and Leicester on the back foot since. It sets us up nicely
for this second half. It's what the game needed and Leicester City, the
favoured team perhaps. It's typical of the Championship. They've got to
come out now. Difficult to call any Leicester come up with? Konchesky
there going up for the ball with Leicester here, but Vassell unable
to keep the momentum going. Birmingham will be buoyed by that
goal, confidence will flow through their veins now.
It's only the fourth home match Birmingham have had this season.
Two wins and a draw before today. 1-0 winners over Coventry, three
over Millwall and 1-1 draw with Barnsley. And now they have a one
goal advantage. Ridgewell unable to keep that in. Suddenly when they
score a goal you see confidence coming through the team.
referee, Kevin Wright, only on the field in the milledle -- middle for
three and a half minutes when he made this decision, the penalty
kick. I think he stands on his foot, in fairness. Difficult to see.
doesn't get the ball. It's a the pitch, the new referee, but he
was quick to make the decision. was Quick on the Draw when he
finally did, that decision three and a half minutes, I think, after
now. Peltier counsel. -- down. Free kick.
First time in five matches Leicester have conceded a goal.
complaints here. Leicester's players are complaining because
Beausejour has had a yellow card in the first half. It's not a sending
off. That's why they were making a fuss. That's what the Leicester
fans think of it. A cynical bit of play there by
Beausejour. I didn't think it was a booking, though. I wouldn't want to
see the game changed in that manner. Konchesky then will look to whip
this one in. Anxious moments these for the home
team. Whipped in too quickly there for
Vassell. He's gone for power. Really not a lot Vassell can do
with that when it's coming around at your body height. Konchesky, who
played in a European final with Fulham a couple of years back.
Scored in an FA Cup final for West King I think. -- just an untimely
slip. Neil Danns unable to kick the making a change in the not-too-
distant future. We will keep an eye on that for you. Not a great
clearance by Schmeichel. And Mills is in a spot of bother here with
the referee. And it is a red card. What a dramatic introduction to the
match for Kevin Wright. We have only played for 10 minutes in the
second half and he has awarded a penalty kick and sent off the
Leicester City captain. Kasper Schmeichel puts him in all sorts of
bother. His touch is not great. I He is lunging in, off the ground.
He has gone in with two feet. They going on their backside, and the
foot comes up and it's only going to do damage. The you cannot go
into a challenge with both feet off the floor, launching like that.
Then referee is right in the situation, but why the player needs
to do that is beyond me. He was one yellow card from going into a ban,
and for this two-footed lunge she badly injured because he has sought
to have gone through him. Time and time again you see players going in
with two feet to raise and there is no place for that on a football
changes. John Pantsil, the Ghana international who has played at the
which I think will happen now. Neil Danns will be one of the players
coming off. So, Neil Danns leading down again. Beckford looks as
though he is waiting to come on. But it is just the one change at
the moment. They did have two ready to go. I think the sending-off has
affected that. One final word about the referee, to big decisions and I
think he's got both of them right. Very much so. We were giving him
some stick the matter time it took to get him on the pitch, but he has
given himself time to make those decisions as well and he has been
behind the management duo. They consider what their best move is
now. Remember, Leicester are a man down for the rest of the match and
that is over half an hour. And the flag goes up against Marlon King.
penalty spot when it arrived and now he looks a different player or
the sudden. They all do, these Birmingham players. -- all of a
sudden. They suddenly look really sharp. Another great call from the
A lucky bounce Britain for two Ridgewell. Peltier's header.
officials spot-on with that one. Steve Copeland on the nearside.
Things have spiced up in this half. So many talking points and we are
again and ride out the storm, but they won't do so with play like
that from macro Abe. Keith Fahey's were down to 10 men and you have to
protect it. -- giving the ball away, defender for Birmingham over this
forthcoming season. I think Beausejour changed the game with a
shot at goal and the penalty. He of the twin giants around him has
been sent off. Much resting on the soldiers -- shoulders of Bamber.
Hansel playing as a right-back. Suddenly burning are winning a good
that Leicester could do something. now, but he is the man who has been
scoring the goals for Birmingham. Year-old fashion target-man. Not
that mobile, but always available - far this evening. That is David
quite there for Leicester. Leicester will make another change
now. Richie Wellens is going to come on. Yes, it is you. He comes
on here for just half-an-hour. Wellens is a good player and will
pass the ball to death. He needs caught offside. No, always playing
on the last defender's shoulder. The linesman was right across it,
so an excellent decision again. of activity, the Leicester City
Apology for the loss of subtitles for 51 seconds
comfortable to come out top. -- to always told when you're young to
deal with it and worry about it after. Another change by Leicester
City, and the player coming on his Jermaine Beckford and Darius
Vassell, the former Aston Villa player leaves the field. That is a
like-for-like substitution. Beckford will be a willing runner.
He will have to get through some work here. He arrived from Everton
on deadline day in August. He missed the last match against Derby
with a groin injury. Yet to get a goal for Leicester City. Was
particularly prolific for Leeds a couple of seasons ago. He scored 85
goals in 152 games for them. What a great player to be putting on in
this situation. You need to chase heavy from Beckford -- Nugent
caught offside. He needs to go back a little before he swivels. And
Nugent, playing on the last defender, he knows he has to gamble
but needs to be more patient and more intelligent with his runs.
Starting to get a bit frustrated. at the moment. They have had to
change their system with a player down, still keeping two on the top.
They don't get the same time on the Gelson Fernandes. The temperature
get on with the game and Chris Burke was holding him. Good work
from him. Tenacious and then he is being held. He just wants to get on
with it. Not sure what he has done little happier than he might have
home on the opening day of the season by one-0 at Coventry City
and have work to do if they are going to win on the road for the
getting rather irritated with each It certainly is and Birmingham
looking to just wind it down. They are in no rush to take the free-
the ball in play. He is looking for a better ball from Marlon King
by the crowd. The crowd numbering a little over 17,000 here this Sunday
the box than that. I feel that is Leicester's best way to play, get
the ball into the from players early. Miss out the midfield a
little bit. When you're in good positions you have to make it count.
Sven-Goran Eriksson will be pulling his hair out that he is not getting
a better delivery from his four BOP real sighting of goal for Chris
Wood in the match and he brought the best out a Kasper Schmeichel.
You saw Peltier's naivety going just gets on the inside of Peltier.
A decent strike from there. Schmeichel does especially well to
save it. -- a chance for two-0. Just a bit naive and the defending.
United to join Leicester. -- Kasper Schmeichel move from Leeds. It is
the third time he has played under option. He is trying to come inside
when he should go for Ally -- I think Beckford takes the wrong
option. -- she should go for the intelligent run from Chris Burke.
He runs off the ball very well. Konchesky was a bit slow to see
that. He looks quite lively. He looks as though he might have a
little trick or be able to do something to change again here or
there. I think he is an intelligent player. Probably best playing more
Apology for the loss of subtitles for 51 seconds
central because he hasn't got the by Alex McLeish in the summer
before he left to join Aston Villa. slipped away from him. He could not
see this coming. Very comfortable in the match or the sudden gives a
penalty away, concedes it, down to 10 men -- or the sudden. He has it
famous face in the ground. Birmingham's most famous supporter,
Jasper Carrot. He is certainly laughing at the moment. He will be
but saved by Schmeichel. He looked like his father, the way he spread
himself. A great save. Should be that. No one there for the passport.
That was in the great Schmeichel tradition, the way he shaped his
body to make the block. The way they spread themselves, him and his
father, he stands up for a long while. He does his job for his team.
expecting that. I think Ridgewell decides to jump out of the way of
it. Birmingham lucky to get away with that one. Just sort of whips
it in. That incident shows that we are far from done and dusted in the
he might have got a bang on the head, but he was OK and fairly
comfortable for the keeper. That is way you see a bit of extra quality
from Wellens. -- that his way you see. You concede a run of King.
Good defending in the end to stop the ball from going behind for a
Leicester City Trelfa that solitary penalty kick. He will know he has
to do better there. Both full-backs, and that she shows you, with John
Pantsil on one side, Konchesky on the other. It has gone wrong for
Sven-Goran Eriksson and his team in the second half. Started soon after
the break with a shot from Beausejour which beat the
goalkeeper all ends up, then the big decision for the referee
awarded a penalty kick and expertly dispatched. This was the sending-
off of Matt Mills, the Leicester captain. Straight red card. Things
started to unravel for Leicester City. And that is why we are left
with this one-0 scoreline. But, penalty because King was held up,
but the referee says know. -- says think the ball was out of control.
He knows what he's doing, King, he plays it through to players and
knows there is no way to go. Ridgewell stands his ground and
there has been an infringement in afternoons, Sven-Goran Eriksson
certainly not a penalty. certainly don't think he is
thinking him what he should do next, that is for sure. That would be a
If there is a team that goes down to 10 men who could still win it,
it would be Leicester. It makes intriguing. But they keep trying to
play through midfield. They would brings the run to the end. They are
really going to have to defend now, throw. Leicester are knocking on
Heres Wood. A great chance to wrap up the points. And he has! Chris
Wood for Birmingham City! Just as Leicester were knocking on the door,
looking for an equaliser, surely now Chris Wood has ensured the
points stay at St Andrews and go to the problem for Leicester,
committing bodies forward, and Chris Wood shows maturity beyond
his years. He has a lot to do. A great reverse pass from Marlon King.
I think Schmeichel sultans of a bit short, but he shows the maturity
and tucked it away. Does everything right. Really, from this situation,
you cannot see Lester getting back into it. In Birmingham's nine
League matches this season, including today, Chris Wood has
found the back of the net eight times. Marlon King with the through
ball. And you felt from the moment he had the ball at his feet that
Wood was going to score. He is in that sort of form. What a release
for Chris Hughton and the backroom staff. He is a very reliable
footballer. You expect him to score, but he still has a lot to do and he
keeps his head. He is making a name Right On from the home crowd. They
were rather nervous until about 30 seconds ago.
Five minutes to go here. Five minutes for Leicester to score
twice, to salvage something. Tall Birmingham City.
And Beausejour, the player being replaced. Really it was Beausejour
who got the ball rolling for Birmingham in a way, with that
effort early in the second half which energised the play and the
crowd. It didn't seem in the the first half anybody in the
Birmingham side believed in themselves, he gave them that
belief and with that penalty, he wanted to make something happen and
changed the game. Elliot scored the goal that won the play-off for
Burnley a couple of years ago, so he knows what it's all about in
trying to get out of the Championship. Mostly played off the
bench since his arrival, often as a second striker playing behind the
main man up front. Often the way with one team trying
to get back into it, they get hit by the sucker punch. It's a decent
with a clearance. Birmingham will be looking to keep
a clean sheet, but Leicester, you wouldn't put it past them to grab a
goal here. Three minutes of the 90 away from home for the first time
this season? It looks that way at that ball could have gone in on on
umpteen occasions there. It's not the quality on the ball. A big
decision by the referee from Leicester's point of view, they're
looking for a penalty here and it's not given. For me the ball is out
of control. He knows what he is doing. He has played it between two
players. The referee's right on top of it. Ridgewell OK, he has been
professional, using his body, but for Burke.
Birmingham maybe push for a third. Schmeichel right behind the shot
their teeth here, they don't look like a side about to surrender this
legs one more time. for Birmingham, just pop it around.
They're a little bit behind on the fixtures. Win those games in hand,
they can fly up the table. We are in the last minute now of the 90
and it's strange when we look back to the first half how this match
has panned out. You can't call it. Anybody tuning in now after the
first half won't believe the scoreline. But it's been - it's had
everything in the second half. had everything the first half
didn't. We are heading into four minutes of added time. Birmingham's
players are rather enjoying Sven has opted to leave two
strikers on the pitch. Birmingham are going to make a late
change here. Zigic is the player coming on. And Chris Wood, the
scorer of the second goal, what an impact he is making this season. He
gets a standing ovation. Zigic, well, frankly, he will do well to
get a touch of the ball before the final whistle. I bet it will be on
his head, if he does, because he is absolutely enormous. We remember as
Arsenal fans the melee he caused in the Carling Cup final. Probably the
last time that - I think he has played once since. I imagine that's
imprinted on your brain, Martin, that Zigic scored in that Carling
Cup final against Arsenal. He's been limited to one start since the
final back in February due to groin and hip injuries. Only just really
starting to play again. We are into of added -- four minutes of added
time. At the back end of last season Birmingham falling out of
the Premiership, almost a major here. King underneath that but
Bamba able to get to the ball. No doubt there will be better days for
Leicester ahead this season? It's about learning from this, about
taking opportunities when they're there. When you are dominating a
game, as they were in the first half, you must put something on the
score sheet. It didn't really look as if they were capable of doing it
in the first half. Birmingham City, for all the doom and gloom over the
summer, the financial meltdown and the problems at boardroom level and
the rest of it, actually if if they're able to win a couple of
matches in hand they've got Birmingham should do well this
season, or certainly have the potential to do well and be in the
shake-up at the end. They lost a lot of players but if he look at
the defence, looks very solid, very experienced. It's something to
build on. As long as you have players who can score goals for you,
as we have seen with Wood, you have And that rather sums up the way
things have worked out for Leicester here.
That's goal of the season if that goes in. You want him to start
learning, start developing. He's been at Everton. He can be a big
player at Leicester but he has to - would have been better off getting
into a more advanced position. way off target. That is the catch
minute of added time, looking for a third goal. It will be a goal kick.
Good day for Chris Hughton and Birmingham City in the end. He was
saying he feels their season has to be built on their home form and
they're unbeaten here in the league at St Andrews. Three wins in a draw
from four on their home patch. keeps it tight, keeps it simple.
Beausejour is the one standout player for me today. You got to
have that attacking threat and he needs more of that type of player
to go with that solidarity he has in defence. The last 20 seconds or
so here. Leicester City with time for one last attack. There will be
no route back for them here today. They'll have to lick their wounds
and prepare for home matches against Watford and Millwall next
on their horizon. There goes the final whistle! It's
Birmingham City's day after a second half that was much better
than the first. Marlon King set Birmingham on the road to victory
with a penalty kick four minutes into the second period and Chris
Wood added the second six minutes from time. A final score here at St
Andrews of Birmingham City 2, Leicester City 0. Leicester beaten
away for the first time this season. and second half. Yeah, the referee
got it spot on. I didn't think he was the best referee last season,
but to be fair - he had a good second half and got every decision
right. Two big calls. That's frustration. He's caused the
problem by a bad back pass. This is a fantastic move. Great ball there.
The weight of the pass, the time. That's fantastic finish as well.
Good result for Birmingham at the end. Very good result. They were
the better team the second. Beausejour was the key second half.
Arguably could have been sent off after he scored. Thank you very
much for your company this afternoon. Good luck tonight by the
Manish Bhasin presents live coverage from St Andrew's as Birmingham take on Leicester in a Championship Midlands derby. Chris Hughton is looking to repeat the success he had with Newcastle in leading the Blues back to the Premier League at the first time of asking, but it was big-spending Leicester who began the season as promotion favourites after Sven Goran Eriksson spent the summer overhauling their squad. Robbie Savage and Steve Claridge, who played for both clubs during their careers, offer their views on the action. Commentary comes from Simon Brotherton and Martin Keown.