Heading into a game against Cardiff City when they’re in this sort of mood would always be difficult.
And Blues did their best to give themselves a mountain to climb by conceding three first half goals.
But having a go with such attacking intent in the second half took some real courage. It would have been easier to go into their shell and wish the game away but Garry Monk’s team took the game to the hosts and at least had two goals to show for their efforts.
Under the previous regieme, perhaps the second half would be all about damage limitation. Yet Monk wanted to see a reaction from his players, a true reflection of what he’s inherited.
Although Blues leave a lot to be desired defensively,today being a prime example, they already look more of a threat going forward. Jota appears to be finding a rhythm too which could be a key factor for the rest of the campaign.
Let’s not get carried away, it’s still seven defeats on the bounce. However, Blues will take heart from pushing promotion hopefuls Cardiff all the way when it seemed completely dead and buried.
Craig Gardner’s penalty and Maxime Colin’s tidy strike late on gave the scoreline – and Blues’ goal difference – a slightly better gloss.
Going into games against Middlesbrough and Cardiff, the expectation was zero points. The reality was also zero points. The next four fixtures – Hull and Ipswich at home, Bolton away and Burton at home are crucial.
With nine games remaining, it’s make or break time. And while it’s not the time to panic just yet, Birmingham City have some enormous season defining games on the horizon.
Vital Birmingham Man of the Match: Jota