Date: 18th January 2017 at 9:42pm
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So the FA Cup dream may be over once again but no real damage has been done. It’s a competition that Birmingham City have never won and a third round replay was always seen as a burden. Even Rafael Benitez said so, not in so many words.

Taking one look at the team sheet would tell you where the FA Cup stands in the order of priorities for both clubs. Newcastle obviously boast more strength in depth than Blues and made a better fist of the game.

In effect, the tie was over after 34 minutes. A Matt Ritchie penalty and an impressive Yoan Gouffran finish gave Gianfranco Zola’s men a mountain to climb. And to be fair to them, they started climbing it admirably.

David Cotterill gave his team a lifeline and numerous other decent chances were squandered. The inevitable push for the equaliser led to Newcastle’s third, and Ritchie’s second, late on

It may be another defeat, and seven games without a win for Zola, but after giving a good account of themselves in the second half – massively when compared to the capitulation at the same ground in December – Blues can now concentrate solely on the Championship.

Although no one will be spitting their dummy out over an under strength Blues team crashing out of the cup, Zola does desperately need that elusive first win sooner rather than later. Without it, the pressure will continue to mount.  Losing has to be nipped in the bud before it becomes a habit.

Tonight, Blues were just a fog on the Tyne. Ewood Park on Saturday is where the real expectation lies.

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4 Replies to “Fog on the Tyne as Blues crash out at Newcastle”

  • Zola is trying hard to get quality into our team and yes he needs a win. For years now we have endured dire football with little to get us excited. Nsue,Gardner and possibly another pacy wing back augurs well,with Zola perusing quality. For his own sake he must be given our confidence otherwise he will be damaged goods.That would be no good to us as we have someone who wants BCFC to emerge as a football playing club instead of the awful,laboured,fluky,low possession rate outfit of the past.

  • One further point to mention. Last nights WM phone-in after the game heard a fan wanting Zola out-this fan is not alone. My feeling is that should this man go,it would be an opportunity lost to us as no other manager coming in would want to see a football playing attitude attributed to BCFC.Does it matter if the next 5/6 games all result in draws-no. Next season is what matters and appreciating what this manager is trying to achieve vastly outweighs the clamour for a current ‘life or death’ instant 3pts.

  • Unfortunately Brooklyn it does matter. If we get close to the relegation zone fans and board will get anxious and if the promptness of Gary Rowetts exit tells you anything it is that these guys aren’t afraid to pull the trigger.

  • Ijaz. See your point but let’s not forget TTA watched Rowett’s games and were appalled by what they saw. Zola will attract the better players and with good coaching he will achieve success. New attacking full backs,no more Gleeson or MK plodding around and laboured wing play gone-TTA will see a total difference. By the time February arrives a total new formation will have been built. Blackburn maybe a little early but Norwich away and Reading home will ensure 6pts. and that will be the start. Not fanciful thinking on my part but reasoned logic.

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