Declaration of Interest: I am a Birmingham City Fan
I really fear that Blues could go down, because Scott Dann has been ruled out for the rest of the season.
Scott Dann has been one of the best English Central Defenders this season; he was an integral part of a defensive unit that played almost every game together; and yesterday against Villa we looked shaky at the back for the first time in a long while.
Birmingham have only conceeded 26 Premier League goals, far fewer than most teams around the relegation places, if that tenet of success is compromised then things could get seriously bad at St. Andrews.
David Murphy grew into the game at left back, but Liam Ridgewell who has moved in from the flank to cover Dann’s berth did not display his same high performance standard in the middle despite this being his supposed natural position.
The partnership that Dann and Roger Johnson have fostered has been built on a understanding of how to defend as a pair and whole defensive unit. It was clear that understanding and confidence wasn’t there between Johnson and Ridgewell and Ridgewell and Murphy on Sunday, with goalkeeper Ben Foster noticeably hesitant on a number of occassions as well.
Birmingham have two very difficult next league games (Man Utd – Away, Man City – Home) if points aren’t acquired in those two games Birmingham will probably find themselves in the relegation places and with a less healthy goal difference than the current -5.
4/1 on Birmingham to go down (William Hill) looks a big price.
January normally brings reinforcements to Blues, and David Bentley has already arrived on loan, but apparently Robbie Keane’s wages are too high, Kenny Miller wants to wait for a Bosman and Ian Holloway won’t sell Big ‘Eck Charlie Adam.
If scoring remains an issue, then Birmingham will be in big trouble.