Date: 26th February 2006 at 9:29pm
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Blues next two opponents met yesterday and it was Middlesborough who took the points. Hasselbank’s first half brace was enough and things got worse when Nigel Quasie was dismissed in the second half.

This leaves Blues just 3 points behind the Baggies with a game in hand. Middles borough join the Vile on 31 points but have played a game fewer.

Victory next week at the Riverside would probably see Blues out of the bottom three as Albion have the daunting task of going to Stamford Bridge. They have one hope and that is Chelsea will have had all their players away on international duty and will have one eye on their return leg with Barcelona.

Albion would then come to St Andrews in desperate straits.

Before getting too excited Blues will need to reduce its injury list. The three that went down yesterday are key personel and a fit Upson would be a boost. Yesterday’s pairing was outstanding . Controlling Sunderland’s non scoring strikers is one thing, but Hasselbank and Yakubu are a different kettle of fish.