Birmingham City 1 – 0 Peterborough United
Location: St Andrews
Date: 1st September, 2012
Attendance: 14,929 (629 Posh fans)
“The result was a huge relief.” admits Lee Clark.
When changing managers, you always go into the new season unsure on how the team will gel and adapt to the new managers tactics and requirements.
Having missed out on promotion last season, expectations are high at the Blues and with an up and coming young manager now at the helm, things were expected to kick on from last season but it hasn`t gone according to plan.
Prior to this game, the Blues had just one League point after three games and were fresh from a 3-2 Capital One Cup defeat to League One Coventry City.
Both sides looked nervous at the start of the game but it was Posh who had the majority of the possession. Luckily for Birmingham, they couldn`t convert this into goal scoring opportunities and in the end only had one shot on target all game!
The few chances Birmingham created were also wasted and in the end it took a freak goal to steal all three points. With a freekick inswinging into the Posh box, goalkeeper Bobby Olejnik decided to come and punch the ball away but mistimed his punch. The ball went up into the air before bouncing between the keeper and the goal but there was so much spin on the ball, it spun up into the air again and into the top of the net and more importantly, above the heads of the Posh players who were on the line!
Blues boss Lee Clark [pictured below with Darren Ferguson] was pleased to get his first win under his belt even though it wasn`t a very good performance: “The result was a huge relief. The win was more important than anything else.
“If we had put in a fantastic performance and only drawn or lost it would have been frustrating.”
Summer signing Peter Lovenkrands was delighted with their first win of the season: “Everybody was relieved when the whistle went.
“We needed that and I think we deserved it in the end. I don`t think everything went our way in the game but in the end three points was all that matters.
“A victory before the international break was important to give us a bit of confidence and we can take that into the next game.”
Many people thought Lovenkrands had scored after he ran off celebrating straight after the ball hit the net, but he admits it was a definite own goal: “At the time I just felt something [on the back of my head] and I ran away in celebration, but in the end you can see the goalkeeper has definitely hit it, so it was definitely an own goal.”
Vital Posh Viewpoint
Birmingham may have felt they deserved the win despite only having 43% of the possession. They certainly created more chances than Posh did and were unlucky not to have won a penalty for what looked like a blatant foul.
I think judgement is still out on Lee Clark. He may be described as a “bright young manager” but he failed to get Huddersfield promoted out of League One despite having a large financial backing. It`s definitely a gamble Birmingham are taking with him on board and only time will tell if it is the right one or not?it`s certainly not started off very well!
Looking at the Blues squad, they certainly have decent players for this level but there again, with only six teams not having played in the Premiership before, the Championship is getting harder as every year goes by. “Big” teams have been relegated from the Championship before and if things don`t go right for Clark and his team, Birmingham fans may start looking down the table rather than up it!
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