Blessing Or Hindrance?

10 Nov 2022 | 10 comments

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 the outcome on Friday night when Sunderland come to visit, the new belief that this season is alive and kicking is all too real. The enforced break for the World Cup will be either a hindrance or a blessing for the club, with momentum on the field doing nicely as we stand, or an unwanted pause when players are very much in the groove.

Nice thoughts to ponder. Tuesday night’s dramatic draw against Swansea City epitomised this ‘new Blues’, with John Eustace again proving a top Championship Manager. After so many seasons of misery and false dawns, we are all beginning to feel excited as to what might happen on the field between now and next May.

Factors such as the January transfer window and, hopefully, new ownership are good positive pointers for the resumption and second half of the Championship campaign. Scoring goals, tight defences, togetherness and patterns of sensible team selections are all there to be seen.

John Eustace came through the door at St. Andrew’s with nothing to lose and everything to gain with his own methods. So far, everything is working . And working well. Time will tell whether his recipe for stability can be enhanced by climbing further up the ladder and, who knows, perhaps even securing a part in the play off games. As a Blues supporter this new experience of seeing the club aiming high is beyond joy. Hopefully this will continue and ultimately leave the awful past seasons as a forgettable place that we no longer live in.

After Sunderland we all take the enforced breather and recharge, looking forward to what I confidently believe will be continued progress on the field. But whether this hiatus in the season turns out to be a hindrance or a blessing, only the next set of results will tell. What really matters for me though is, as things stand, Blues fans are likely to be very much looking forward to December and January with belief, enthusiasm and expectation. And it’s been a good while since we have been able to say that.

Mitchell Bray


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  1. tracey tyler

    Yes top marks for Eustace,first class job he has done.If we can get a top ten finish which at the moment is looking a distinct possibility then that will satisfactory for all concerned but then the pressure will be on the following Season,then the problems will start.l am not a great advocate of too many loan players,l would aim for a couple because l think it causes too much disruption when their loans end.Its great at the moment with Sanderson,Trusty,Bielik,Longelo and Hannibal but what happens when they leave,also Dean is out of contract so you could potentially loose a back 3 in one foul swoop so you have to rebuild what as become a very good side.There is no continuity in having too many loan players.

  2. Smithy

    Just hope we don’t get turned over tomorrow. Not just the result but the overall good feel factor.

  3. Ed Truman

    Tracey makes some excellent comments about relying on loan players. I share her views but, after so many seasons of serious disappointment, I’m just delighted that John Eustace has not only stopped the rot but has actually turned things around big time. Long may that continue. Let’s enjoy the moment and cross the bridge about losing the loan players when we get there.

    At the end of October Mitchell you talked about a minimum of 5 points from the 5 games to the break being required to set us up nicely for what follows. Well 8 from 4 is an excellent return I think. Friday will be tough because of the demands Blues have faced this past fortnight. It’s a big ask for the team to secure another win against much fresher opponents. But given the way they have been performing of late, I certainly wouldn’t put it past them.

    • Mark R

      Nice article Mitchell, and yes we can definitely look to the remainder of the season with optimism, which makes a really nice change!
      I touched on it in a comment to a previous article, but based on John Eustace’s obvious tactical nous and abilities as a coach, I believe he will use the extra time on the training ground to further improve the players-both individually and collectively-particularly the many talented younger ones we have.
      So I expect the break to be more of a blessing than a hindrance!
      On a separate note, congratulations to Kristian Bielik for making the Poland squad-I look forward to watching him play in Qatar! However, I can’t believe Auston Trusty hasn’t made the USA squad-they must have some exceptional defenders if he can’t get in!!
      That said, I’m sure Eustace and his team will appreciate having him around during the break-from afar he appears to be a very positive and popular member of the squad.

  4. Mick

    This team (whether by accident or meant ) has that vital ingredient togetherness. We all know that there are better footballing teams in this league but there is’nt one that fights more . You can see it on every players face, you can see Troy being the father figure, you can see that never say die attitude . For us of a certain age it’s a throwback to the “ Brummie Bashers “ We can play our part with our vocal support, let’s ramp it up , show the lads we are in it with them !

  5. Mitchell

    Last match before the break- bit of fun- predict the score? I’ll stick my neck out and go for 2-2 draw.

    • Mark R

      2-1 to Blues. (Heart/Head combination!)
      Hogan and Trusty on the scoresheet.

  6. Smithy

    0-0 stalemate. Blues a bit weary. Need the ???? beach.

  7. Mitchell

    Final thought on last night’s avoidable defeat. Having praised all concerned with on field performances recently and in particular the actions of John Eustace, I feel rather aggrieved as to team selection against a decimated Sunderland side with frail and reserve full backs. Giving Jobe Bellingham his full debut and dropping Chong from the start made no sense. Can only feel the inclusion of JB was perhaps other people’s decision.Leave it at that.

  8. Sausage n Egg

    so now we have played Sat…Tues…Fri…while Sunderland have had a week off?Difficult enough with a big squad.

    Football was better when it wasnt run by Sky

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