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James Crawley

James Crawley writes

Posted Saturday, March 13th 2021

MansionBet Match Preview: Birmingham City (A) (20/21)

Bristol City, with two consecutive wins on the road, turn their focus on a trip to Birmingham City this Saturday (March 13th, 3pm KO).

In association with City's Principal Partner MansionBet, we take a closer look at the match...

City have enjoyed a full week of training with a mini 'breather' from midweek action and therefore a chance for Nigel Pearson to make his mark a little more ahead of the next challenge against the Blues.

While City were victorious the last time they travelled - 3-1 wins over Middlesbrough and Swansea City respectively - they head to St Andrew's off the back off two consecutive defeats in the league, both at home.

Arguably, the loss to AFC Bournemouth was harsh and an outcome of two errors on the day though City had played well, while injuries hampered City's day against QPR where debutant Sam Pearson offered some shining light.

Highlights: Bristol City v QPR

Pearson's display was a joy to watch as the Academy midfielder instantly took to his City debut and more than held his own against more senior opposition.

He would return to Under-23s action who beat QPR's development squad 2-0 on Tuesday. Liam Walsh, Marley Watkins - who scored and grabbed an assist - Nathan Baker and Callum O'Dowda all featured and came through unscathed as they mark milestones in their return from injuries.

As to whether they could return to the Robins matchday squad against Birmingham remains to be seen as Manager Nigel Pearson will not be tempted to rush them back too early. Walsh has been with the Under-23s in recent weeks and therefore could have the biggest claim as he looks for his first first team football of the season after helping Coventry City to League One promotion last term.

It was defeat for the Robins against Birmingham last time, where Harlee Dean struck the only goal of the game. The Blues have won four games since that December meeting and find themselves three points above the relegation zone, while Rotherham United just one place below in 22nd have a handful of games in hand. Now heading to the Midlands after two defeats, Pearson wants his side to pick themselves up and show resilience with the countdown to the season's end almost upon us.

MATCH DETAILS 

Where: St Andrew's Stadium
When: Saturday, March 13th, 3pm KO
Competition: Sky Bet Championship

Referee: Jarred Gillett
Assistants: Philip Dermott and Bhupinder Gill
Fourth official: Martin Coy

DOWN MEMORY LANE

Bristol City 3-1 Birmingham City
Ashton Gate
Tuesday, April 10th 2018
Sky Bet Championship

City recorded an historic win over Birmingham City when they beat the Blues 3-1 in BS3 in the 2017/18 season.

A Marlon Pack free kick, Bobby Reid’s 20th goal of the season and Matty Taylor’s late strike came on a night where City showed an attacking masterclass, to answer their critics during a bad run of form.

Pack and Reid had fired City into a 2-0 lead with fewer than 30 minutes on the clock, before the Blues halved the deficit through Lukas Jutkiewicz. Both asides had chances to add to their tallies with the crossbar denying Reid before substitute Taylor marked his first appearance since January with the fourth goal of the evening.

A little over 20,000 packed out a flood-lit Ashton Gate for the Robins’ final scheduled evening game of the campaign. It would be a memorable win as the Robins had not beaten a Birmingham City side since November 2nd 1993.

HEAD TO HEAD*

Birmingham City v Bristol City

Played: 68
City won: 17 (29%)
Drew: 17
City lost: 34

Bristol City goals: 43
Birmingham goals: 26

Bristol City top goalscorer: Famara Diédhiou (10)
Birmingham top goalscorers: Scott Hogan (6)

Bristol City most assists: Antoine Semenyo (7)
Birmingham most assists: Jérémie Bela and Iván Sánchez (5)

Bristol City clean sheets: 9
Birmingham clean sheets: 9

League positions
Bristol City: 13th (45 points)
Birmingham: 21st (35 points)

*All competitions unless stated

Sam Pearson on his City debut v QPR last weekend
Nahki Wells faced his former side again

Robins TV

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