Often Partisan

Tricky Game Against the Tricky Trees: Forest Preview

Birmingham City will be looking to extend their unbeaten run to a seventh game today as they entertain Nottingham Forest at St Andrews today.

Forest

Blues will have a tough game against Billy Davies’ men, who are in seventh place in the Championship. Forest have only lost once in their last six games and haven’t lost away from home since going down 3-1 to Yeovil at Huish Park back in October.

Darius Henderson is a doubt but the Tricky Trees hope to have on-loan midfielder David Vaughan back in the starting eleven.

Blues

Mitch Hancox and Lee Novak will continue to miss out for Blues with Lee Clark having to make the choice between sticking with the team that beat Bournemouth 2-0 or reshuffling players to keep everyone fit for the busy festive period.

Olly Lee and Andrew Shinnie must believe that they have done enough to retain their places in the starting eleven with Callum Reilly and Aaron Mclean continuing to miss out. Paul Robinson should continue at left back but it’s worth noting now that three of the back four are two bookings away from suspension although both Dan Burn and Kyle Bartley will benefit from the cutoff point for five yellow cards on December 31 if they can keep their noses clean for another couple of games.

It’s a tough call but my personal hope is that Clark will keep the faith with the side that won last weekend; for all the talk of needing squad rotation the truth is that there shouldn’t be much need yet to change a winning formula. For all the plaudits gained for the recent run Blues must start winning at home if they are to get more fans behind them and with a bumper crowd expected it’s down to Clark to ensure that the team entertains the fans.

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  • Sam Marsh

    The midfield need to keep posession better than last week to give
    us a chance.

  • Chris W

    Billy Davis teams are hard to beat, though we won last week at Bournemouth it not a pretty game but for Randolph and the defence throwing bodies for the cause it could had should have gone the other.
    Against Forest we have to take control of the ball, with the high winds predicted we can not hoof it to Ziggy and hope, we need the midfield to play the through to him, with Lingard and Burke cutting in from the wings.
    Forecast for me is a much needed, morale boosting home win, as for the scoreline, with if Randolph and the defence perform like last week I can see a 3-0, if Forest score first it will be 3-2.
    I have passed a late fitness test, but the Doc reckons I cannot out sing 3,500 Forest fans on my own, of which he is one, and will need some help.
    So come you Bluenoses and make some noise today…. lets have a little nostalgia… ST Andrews a Cauldron of noise that can be heard in the Bull ring….
    KRO+DNM

  • bluenose08

    As its my 1st game this season as I usually work Saturdays ( sorry Mr carter) I am looking forward to an entertaining game as blues are at home I expect them to be doing more of the attacking to encourage the home fans to get behind them and create an atmosphere.so come on blues give us an early Xmas present. Merry Xmas to you Dan and all the other Bluenoses on this at home and abroad.
    K.r.o

  • mark

    Again I will re- hash the important to get as many noses down the stans as possible……….your team needs you………your boisterious cheers have not been heard at the stans this season. You as fans have the opportunity to out sing the trees. They are coming to take the p*ss and take over the stans with their voices…….. Are you prepared to let this happen on our own territory???????? If so im losted ti out sing them on my own-…………:-) :-)

  • mark

    Getting ready to rumble in couple of hours 15 friends and family we will be there to cheer our royal blueboys on……….kro

  • DoctorD

    Gonna be tight. 2-1 to Forest or a 1-1 draw.

    • mark

      Imo doc blues have been extremely unlucky against the top teams. Imo a match has to turn eventually in blues favour so why not this one……blues wins, hopefully happy fans happy xmas….

  • Steve Aerobic

    I’m nervous today as every time we start to get some momentum we lose our way again at home. This is a fabulous opportunity for Elsie and the boys to show some real intent and push further up the table. If we beat Forrest today we will only be 7 points behind them!!

  • mark

    In the spotted dog pub fantastic supporters, well done blues, you proved to the home supporters……

  • bluenose08

    Standard of football from both teams was poor and for me Bartley was the best player on the pitch by a mile was always there to cover the other defenders with timely interventions, a good crowd but where was the atmosphere no rousing renditions of k.r.o. can’t really fault the effort of the players its just that they probably wouldnt get into the 1st 11of the top teams in this division let’s. Hope they can do better against Barnsley. K.r.o.

  • http://OftenPartisan Shirley Blue

    I didn’t think the game was too bad and the crowd was a bit subdued. However it was great to see so many there. I think today’s attendance showed that pricing is the key to decent attendances not what is going on off the pitch or even recent performances. People will turn up if they think they are getting value for money. I’m not saying it can be £10 every match but its something they might want to experiment with in other games remaining in the season. The key in terms of good business practice is to set prices to maximise income. I didn’t renew my season ticket this season at £530 because I didn’t believe it constituted decent value for money.

    Change of subject but what has happened to Shane Ferguson? Not even on the bench – is he injured? If not I’m not sure what Shinnie and Bell give us that he doesn’t. Good dead ball taker too. I thought he made a big difference when he joined us on loan last season. Seems strange to take him on loan and pay his wages and not involve him.

  • Richard Granfield

    It was an entertaining game despite the 0-0 scoreline. Blues lacked balance and all the attacking threat came down the right via Burke and Caddis. Shinnie looked out of place out on the left of midfield where we needed a left sided player. Ferguson comes to mind.
    Gray replaced Shinnie, but on this showing he is not ready for Championship football.
    Zigic remains an enigma. He could and should have been our goalscoring hero. Instead he appeared to be half hearted in everything he tried. If only we could install Robbie Savage’s attitude and aggression into Zigic’s physical attributes.
    .

  • Darren Brown

    My first visit to St Andrews for a while and I was impressed with the team.
    A very good 0-0 game which Zigic should have scored 2 goals. I wasn’t a Lee Clarke fan but I think the team looked very good today with what he’s got to deal with !
    Well done and a good home crowd which shows we are worth buying and investing in.
    COME ON YOU LOCAL BUSINESS PEOPLE PLEASE BUY MY CLUB AND TAKE US FORWARD !
    CV7 Blue

  • mark

    well what can i say 7th game unbeaten i think the trees had about one real opportunity in the game…….. and yes they were shite……………..i counted about five clear opportunity for blues first half how on earth did ziggy miss that header lovely cross by burke……. we had at least a couple of penalty shouts must admit the ref had a very poor game imo…………..the home crowd was excellent and very much appreciated what the team was trying to do their togetherness, their work ethic even ziggy got applause for closing down forest goalkeeper. In my reflection of the game blues only needed to score that elusive goal and forest were there for the taking. Hey on another day and maybe a couple of ref decisions going our way we would have possible won that match. Forest player deserved to be sent off. We need to re-group, and start again, have a right good go at wigan no fear……..kro

  • mark

    23, 500 20,000 bluenoses dont you just love it……………………..i did

  • Chris W

    Great crowd,good atmosphere and work ethic…
    7 unbeaten which is an achievement itself but why Oh why can’t we find that winning mentality we seem to have away from home.
    If only Ziggy would attack the ball, he is a goalscorer, he has presence, he has ability but seems to lack heart, passion or desire to put himself where it hurts, Latchford, Hateley, Pickering were attacking the ball and would flatten (Usually with sheer desire to win) anyone who dared got in the way….
    I agree with most we lack someone like Ferguson on the left, we need some to link with Robbo… we seemed one sided…
    Plenty of pluses to draw on and if we have a second half to the season we did last year we will have a very good season indeed….

    Hope Mrs Dan has something special, for her Patience following all your Hard work keeping us informed so have very special Merry Christmas to you and you family Dan….

    Till Boxing Day have a Merry Christmas one and all….

    KRO+DNM

  • StaffsBlue

    I think the team proved today that they’re not going to roll over for anyone. The thing that impressed me most, was the never-say-die… you’ll-get-past-me-at-your-own-peril attitude. I think with that kind of fight for each other mentality, we’re not going to be beaten too many times. All we’re lacking, is someone who can put simple chances away. We could and should have beaten Forest today. 2-0 wouldn’t have flattered us. How Zigic missed that header, I’ll never know. Easily the best cross of the game. He could have f*rted and put that one away. He always seems scared of the ball coming to his head.

    Very impressed with the defence yet again. Burn still makes me squirm a bit when he’s one-on-one… but Bartely was immense, mopping up everything. Lingard flatters to deceive much of the time. Demarai Gray doesn’t look anywhere near this level. I counted 7 touches and 6 times he gave away possession. His time will come. Our best play, as has been mentioned already, was through Caddis/Burke. Adeyemi is getting better with each game. Shinnie is a bit of a fish out of water at times.

    All in all, a satisfactory performance. Just needed one of those chances to go in. On to Wigan.

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