Gathering Momentum

10 Aug 2022 | 17 comments

St Andrews
In Off The Post

The following article has been written by one of our Trust members.  They are the opinions of that person and not necessarily those of Blues Trust.  Would you like to contribute a discussion point of your own about Birmingham City Football Club?  If so, we would be delighted to hear from you.

Whatever’s happening off the pitch at St. Andrew’s is currently being overshadowed by performances on the green stuff. Two games played and four points in the bag is very, very acceptable. And not least because both opponents made it to the play-offs just a few short weeks ago.

Whilst we hope that this start continues to gather momentum, we must also be aware that our squad is fairly thin and needs bulking up before the transfer window closes. Should the takeover enter its final stages imminently, then adding to John Eustace’s already confident group of players would seem sensible. Reinforcements up front and a creator in midfield would, in my opinion, make this season more than interesting.

Happy times as we stand before Cardiff City away then yes, certainly, although of course we want more. But I have been irritated since last Friday’s win against Huddersfield by the comments from Scott Hogan about last season under Lee Bowyer. Comparing life under new management for himself and Troy Deeney to that of last season’s tracking back on opposing wing-backs which left them tired is very disappointing. Blaming this for not performing what their positions in the team call out for is equally shoddy.

Both Deeney and Hogan didn’t produce last season because they were not good enough. Hence the arrivals of Onel Hernandez and Lyle Taylor. In my view, Hogan is lucky to still be at St. Andrews given his history with previous clubs. And I don’t think Lee Bowyer deserves such ill advised remarks, regardless of whether he was or was not a success at St. Andrew’s. Hogan and Deeney need to produce and not just on the odd occasion. Goals are what they are employed to deliver and without feeble excuses should they fall short. Something, by the way, that has happened on more than one occasion recently in Hogan’s case.  

Moving forward to Cardiff and the raised expectation of more points. But, hopefully, we will also see more progress with the takeover. I’m quietly optimistic about this, albeit that knowledge of the actual situation is proving rather difficult to obtain which is no doubt to be expected given the circumstances. That’s all fine and understandable but let’s not get too quiet about it. We don’t need any dust settling!

Mitchell Bray


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  1. pamela allsopp


  2. Roy Smith

    I have a soft spot for Bowyer but he didn’t help himself last year with some of his tactical and positional decisions. Hogan is simply saying how he feels about his new role. Nothing wrong with that.

    • Chris

      I’ve seen the video of Hogan’s comments and in his defence he was asked what’s changed with Eustace coming in and he gave an honest answer. Bowyer publicly criticized several players on several occasions last season which was very unprofessional. If he hadn’t wanted every single player to defend then maybe our strikers would have scored more goals, the problem was last season they had no service. Moral was at it’s lowest i’ve ever seen at St Andrews and that was down to Lee Bowyer.

  3. Smithy

    Proof of all this is how Hogan and Deeney end up with goals tally. Let’s say 10 each would be ok but single figures each not so good. As regards Hogan he has been rewarded well at Blues with very long contract after let’s be honest a pitiful past record with clubs. New role or old role doesn’t matter just get the ball in the net please.Same goes for Deeney.

  4. Linda Goodman

    Wrong Mitchell, Deeney shouldn’t be at this football club. He’s doing on the pitch since he arrived and all he does it shout his loud mouth off it. Hogan at least scores given the service.

  5. Stan Moye

    Most Bluenoses will always be respectful towards Lee Bowyer when reminiscing of his exploits in a Blues shirt, probably less so when he was the main man in the dugout. But for me last season is in the past, l’m only now concerned how our current squad performs, we’re not privy to the dressing room atmosphere, but John Eustace certainly has them fired up, and long may it continue. Like most teams two or three sensible savvy additions would benefit us once the inevitable injuries and suspensions kick in. Judging by Paul Richardson’s animated reaction when we scored on Friday night, he’s well up for it. Great to see part of the new ownership actually being a True Blue. More displays like the one against Huddersfield and hopefully we can genuinely start singing
    “We’re on our way” KRO

  6. Ijaz

    Bowyer was spot on last year when criticising Hogan who missed at least 8 sitters. Bowyer said Hogan should be on 20 goals when he reached 10. I didn’t like the way Bowyer did his dressing down in public though which was unprofessional. I think the players will respect you more if you keep your comments in house whenever possible. I think Hogan and Deeney are just stating the mood change in the camp since Eustace has taken charge. There does appear to be a better team spirit. Long may it continue. KRO.

    • Julian Glass

      Let’s hope the HKSE cancel the listing, prompting BSHL to sell all of BCFC. This means only R&L need to pass O&D test and prove there is no Russian money in Maxco.

      It might mean though that BSHL try to renege of the current deal to try to pull in some more interested parties.

      • Mitchell Bray

        Julian. Although this article is not about ‘Russian money’ As you have mentioned it I feel it needs addressing and from my information received from various sources- this scary notion is fake. Rest assured.

  7. Dorsetblues

    I think Deeney does a lot for the team spirit on and off the pitch but I’m a little concerned about his style of play. Is seems a yard or two off the pace and then moans when it doesn’t go in the right direction. Plenty of time though. KRO

  8. Mark R

    I agree with your comments about Scott Hogan Mitchell. It is disappointing, and a tad disrespectful, to hear him making excuses for his poor return last season-effectively blaming Lee Bowyer for tasking him with excessive tracking back. However, he can’t blame anyone but himself for his poor chances to goals conversion ratio, which was chronically below par last season, even for the Championship.
    That said though, it’s obvious that John Eustace and his staff have had a hugely positive effect on all the players’ attitude, team spirit, and most importantly of all, results (so far), in a very short space of time.
    We definitely need reinforcements asap, no doubt, but I also feel that we will see some big contributions from some of the younger lads this season. We saw last night how the likes of Jobe Bellingham, Alfie Chang and Josh Williams can step up and do a good job, not to mention our more ‘established’ kids like JJ, and also George Hall, my pick of all our ‘young uns’ (for future stardom) who hasn’t featured for us yet this season.
    Going back to Scott Hogan though, now he’s said his piece about Lee Bowyer, I’d like to see him quietly focus on being the 20+ goals-a-season man that he could, and should, be for Blues this term.
    Then he can tell us more about this, or anything he likes, at the end of the season….!

  9. WayCoolBlue

    Bowyer was the master of his own downfall.
    Constantly putting down the team constantly telling them they was not good enough publicly and directly.
    No player is going to perform at their best in the situation. You can see massive improvements in the squad already their performances that attitude. The style of play the willingness and treatment it’s all there wasn’t there last season.

  10. BLUES1875

    I suggest there was a split in the camp squad last year and with LB constantly picking on SH – though there was some praise at times – I suggest SH was telling it how it was that he’s getting on better with JE which I trust leads to more goals through out the season – SH is a penalty box player as the goal against Huddersfield showed – a top quality finish – running his socks off is definitely not his name though I note it is a modern day trait – personally rather than running around I think he’ll prefer to maintain his energy for that split second in the box and score more goals – we’ll see at the start of the November world cup break where we are and if that’s working but JE is getting a lot more out of this squad than LB did from the middle of last season onwards

  11. Mick

    Not far off with what we’ve got, need out and out goalscorers ,don’t think hogan or deeney are the answer. Need a quality midfielder and someone with pace on the right to match platheta on the left . So far so good though !

  12. Steve Turner

    I would protect Hogan over Deeney any day. I thought Deeney was very poor against Huddersfield – not in game at all. Hogan on the other hand was constantly running, trying to draw defenders out of position and took his goal very well.
    I like Bowyer but that was then this is now.
    One Swallow doesn’t make a summer so will not get carried away just yet but looking good. Need extra strikers though because Juke is finished and Cosgrove couldn’t hit a coes arse with a banjo.

  13. David Aldridge

    You only need to see how Hogan performed in 2020 post lockdown. Bowyer wasn’t around then so what was Hogan’s excuse? Both Hogan and Deeney should never have been signed. Through in Juke’s contract extension and you can see that our lack of ability up front is self inflicted.

  14. Ed Truman

    As frustrating as he can be, I still think Hogan is worth persevering with. He’s the only mobile, out and out finisher that we have right now. On his day he is clinical. We just need him to produce more days. But if his brief this season is to stay in the middle and in the box then maybe that will happen. Providing he gets some proper service of course.

    Even the great crop of youngsters now beginning to make their mark doesn’t include a striker. Not yet anyway.

    John Eustace has made a very good start and is to be applauded for galvanising the squad in such a short space of time. Still early days obviously, but the signs are encouraging.

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