Getting Through Unscathed

1 Feb 2023 | 11 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.

We have been here before and are seasoned enough to be at the ready.  Reality hurts but the facts don’t lie. We probably need a minimum of fifteen more league points to survive another season in the Championship.  And we need them fast.  A blunt and hard target if we are to get through unscathed yet again.

Simple for the players and us supporters to accept and understand, albeit dreadfully depressing to be fighting in the dregs of the Championship barrel once more.  Dismiss the illogical notions that dropping a league would actually be helpful, especially those who use this more as a defensive mechanism against disappointment. Relegation would be horrific.

What concerns me, and I’m sure many fellow supporters, is just where are we going to get the required points?  Defensively we are vulnerable, to put it kindly.  Midfield contributions in terms of goals is virtually zero. And, since the World Cup restart, our strikers have gone missing.

John Eustace voices stoically that we must stick together and have belief that we will come through this ‘pointless’ period.  All very well and commendable, but the trick is to get the players to believe in his words.  Blues supporters are more than doing their bit in ‘sticking together’.

Our Championship survival is paramount this time around, and I keep asking myself if we are suitably equipped to get over the line.  Fifteen is a modest target in terms of points required, but with Swansea and West Bromwich Albion next up we need to get some more points on the board urgently.

My plea to JE is to get the back four sorted and organised, and without any ideas that wing backs might come into play.  After that then who knows, as starting and finishing with a point has to be the least requirement.  Let’s get through the eighteen games and see what develops, hopefully retaining our Championship status in the process.

This season has been strange for many reasons, with hopes raised by bubbling nicely along only to be interrupted by poor results and the dreaded hamstrings which now leave us struggling and bereft of ideas once out on the pitch.  John Eustace praises his experienced players during the week continuously, and his loyalty is commendable.  But that begs the question why is this appreciation not carried forward to actual match days?  As fans we all have differing views, and perhaps this summer may see an upward movement for the club in general terms.

But in the meantime, starting at Swansea City, we need to start accumulating  more points.  Stuck on 32 for what seems an eternity says it all.  My inner thoughts assure me that by the law of averages things must look up soon, and fortunes will start to change.  But, then again, I have to remind myself we are talking about Birmingham City and logic doesn’t always follow.

Mitchell Bray


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  1. Peter Bates

    We look vulnerable at the moment but it is a confidence thing, we created enough chances to win 2 games last night and there is the worrying bit no one is scoring ,over the two cup games there must be 10 to 15 good chances on target and because those chances are going begging the defence comes under pressure I personally think we will be ok but as everyone knows this is season after season and it can’t continue kro

    • Stephen Harrison

      Agree with Peter, but perhaps last night’s result v Blackburn a blessing in disguise. Full focus now on the league, some extra minutes for those players who need them.
      Permanent signing of Longelo solves issue of which of the loanees to leave out of squad.
      Fortunes in front of goal will change, but sooner rather than later please. Have a hunch Khadra might produce, he’s looked good so far and not burdened by previous end of season battles.

  2. Smithy

    Although our manager comes across decent and honest I just wonder how many more winless games he can survive. Swansea must be the game which stops the rot. Defeat again I really feel will be the time up.

  3. Tracey Tyler

    Three weeks ago you would have thought that Longelo had played his last game for Blues,left out the side to accommodate another loan player then replaced by Friend or Graham with everybody lamenting his displays,yesterday we signed him !!!That’s Blues but what we want more than anything is a game changer,someone who does something out the ordinary and we do have one…George Hall,so my advise is to get him fit as soon as possible and get him in the Team.

  4. Stan Moye

    Think the signing of Longelo will see JE still play his favoured wing back system, and to be fair it was very effective during the first half of the season. But the defence has been leaking goals, why when we had the best defensive record in the league? Yes you can point to injuries, but even Ruddy has look less assured than normal. We have two potential match winners in Hogan and Khadra, so it’s not all doom and gloom.
    As pointed out the team also need to start believing in JE spin, the likes of Belic hasn’t been at the races for weeks, as Tracey says get George Hall into the team ASAP, his energy and vision have been badly missed. KRO

  5. John P

    On paper we have a good squad, not great but good, on grass we’re rubbish.

    It’s the manager’s job to instil confidence and he doesn’t seem able to do that, what is it about Birmingham that once we sign a striker he forgets to bring his scoring boots with him, not just now but for the past two decades.

    I didn’t want Eustace as manager but I will accept he was good up until the world cup, since then both he and his players have gone AWOL as regards performances on the field of play. How many more players will publicly apologise for the team’s performances before the team plays as a team?

    Once again we’re in a relegation battle, we really should be used to it by now but every season we fill our hearts with false optimism only to be let down by those who are paid thousands weekly and can’t do their job.

    We’re now a failing club and have been since 2011, only keeping our place in the Championship by shear good fortune. Whilst we have the present owners and the present staff mentality we won’t progress, but perhaps that isn’t so bad as we’re a failing Championship club, so where would we fare in the Premiership? Teams like Sunderland (though now quite healthy) and Portsmouth have gone from being top teams to lower league also rans struggling to make it back to the dizzy heights of the second tier and we could easily fall into that category too.

    It isn’t all doom and gloom, we have a manager who is OK on his day and a squad who can perform on their day, it’s just that they never seem to pick the same day, or if they do it isn’t a match day. History tells us that you can only continue to struggle at the lower reaches of any given division before relegation becomes inevitable, I think our time in nigh.

    Whatever happens, we as genuine supporters, even without the help of a decent ownership, will keep right on to the end of the road.


  6. Mark R

    Looking at the remaining fixtures, being fairly conservative I reckon Blues will get another 16 points, which should be enough to secure survival.
    However, it is Blues we are talking about so you never know(!) but with Khedra looking livelier by the game, the possible addition of a fit George Hall at some point soon, plus a return to form of both Scott Hogan (once fully fit) and the out of form Bielik, I think we have more than enough to stay up comfortably.
    Let’s see…..

  7. Mitchell

    This Swansea game is for me the real tester. Good result, and stability will be the way forward and the position of the manager. Failing that with a sixth successive defeat will undoubtedly cause mayhem within the club. So important is this game, and hopefully with everyone’s permission, I am getting the prayer mat down.

  8. Stan Moye

    Mitchell, based on the evidence of the first half we appear to be in free fall. Completely overrun, a massive 45 minutes coming up, which should not only shape the remainder of the season, but also JE’s future. Why does he persist with the wing back system, we have been well and truly sussed out. Surely a 442 would have been better to press them in midfield. The first half stats speak for themselves. Carpet shops will be doing a roaring trade in prayer mats!

  9. Stan Moye

    Absolutely fair play lads. Thought we’d gone and thrown it away. Massive three points, well done.
    Prayer mat back in the cupboard.

  10. Mitchell

    Agree Stan it looked hopeless at one stage didn’t it. Great joy though in the 97th minute and for me a proper reward for our very honest manager. Will keep the ‘mat’ down for a bit longer hoping for better news on Khadra. Wretched hamstrings never far away in B9.

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