Date: 13th February 2006 at 10:26am
Written by:

Steve Bruce has admitted that leaving Blues with just three strikers for the first half of the season was a ‘big mistake’.

Despite his constant insistance that a team is ‘only as good as its strikers’ and maintaining that four were always needed, Bruce offloaded both Clinton Morrison back to Crystal Palace, and Robbie Blake to Leeds.

This lack of strikers hit Blues hard in the first five months of the season – with one being injured (Mikael Forssell) and the other not being very good (Walter Pandiani), this left Blues with just Emile Heskey as a viable option.

Blues currently sit eighteenth in the Premiership table with just five wins from 24, and only 21 goals – and this lack of goals has proved to be the side’s Achilles heel, with Emile Heskey bagging just three league goals.

Now Bruce has admitted that this decision was a gamble:

‘We went into the season with three strikers and that was a big mistake in hindsight.

‘We took a gamble there and it left us short and we couldn’t do anything about it until the transfer window.

‘For five months we basically had Heskey on his own and he did an excellent job.

‘But Walter failed to reproduce what he had shown when on loan last season and the injuries to Mikael, and the time needed to get over them, have been severe.’

Whilst most Blues fans could have told you that having just three strikers, one of which recovering from a serious injury, was a ‘gamble’ – some would say ‘mistake’ – there is no doubt that this decision has led to the club being in deep trouble at the foot of the table.

This means a lot now rests on the shoulders of Blues’ two new strikers, DJ Campbell and Chris Sutton, to start producing goals, and all Bluenoses will be hoping that Forssell reproduces the goalscoring form he showed whilst on loan two seasons ago.