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Match Previews

MATCH PREVIEW: BIRMINGHAM V TOWN

13 December 2016

The boss looking to cut out the mistakes as Town travel to Birmingham

Mick McCarthy  believes that Town have been the masters of their own downfall in recent weeks by conceding goals following mistakes rather than moments of quality.

The Blues travel to the Midlands this evening to take on Gary Rowett's Birmingham City looking to improve on Saturday's 1-1 draw with Cardiff.

"For a team that had seven clean sheets out of 11, we're suddenly finding it to keep one," he told Ipswich Player HD.

"That's not because teams are dominating us or overrunning us, we've contrived to give goals away against Rotherham, Nottingham Forest and then on Saturday.

"Little mistakes have been costing us and we've got to stop it because it's hard enough playing in this league without giving goals away.

"Birmingham isn't an easy place to go and I think they are like us a couple of years ago when Murph and Didz were playing well.

"Whether it's [Clayton] Donaldson and [Lukas] Jutkiewicz or Che Adams, they are 4-4-2 predominantly.

"I don't think there's any frills about them, but Gary Rowett gets the best out of them and they're having  a good season so far."


Latest from www.itfc.co.uk:

Team News

Town

Teddy Bishop will miss the next 2-4 weeks after damaging his ankle ligaments, so will not be travelling to Birmingham this evening. There are a few doubts through the squad through illness, with Cole Skuse, Grant Ward and Dean Gerken struggling over the weekend, but the trio should be fine to play. Tommy Smith (back), Luke Hyam, Giles Coke and Paul Digby (all knee) remain out.

Birmingham

Gary Rowett could call on the services of winger Jacques Maghoma again after the winger looks to have recovered from illness. Fellow winger, Greg Stewart, however, could be set to miss the game due to a quad injury picked up in the 4-0 defeat to Newcastle at the weekend. Paul Caddis (shoulder) is out, while Steven Gleeson (toe) and Diego Fabbrini (thigh) are doubtful.

Where They Stand

Town: 17th
Birmingham: 8th

Last Time They Met

Will Buckley scored on his home debut at St. Andrews to set Birmingham on their way to a comfortable win over Town in January. The man who had joined on loan from Sunderland pounced midway through the first-half as he followed up Clayton Donaldson's effort before Jonathan Douglas was sent off right on the stroke of half-time for a lunge on Buckley, a decision boss Mick McCarthy disputed. Jon Toral doubled the lead after the break with a sublime volley that dipped over Dean Gerken, before Maikel Kieftenbeld made it three with a drive from outside the box.


Key Players

Adam Webster

The defender has gone from strength to strength so far this season, and struck up a solid partnership with Christophe Berra at the heart of the defence. Mick McCarthy reiterated in his pre-match press conference that he sees the defender as being a Premier League centre half soon, and his performances thus far back that up. He is yet to score this season for the Blues, but having grabbed two last season and coming close a handful of times so far, he will be hoping his first goal isn't far away.


Clayton Donaldson

The physical striker has had to battle to keep playing for Gary Rowett's side, after they added Lukas Jutkiewicz and Che Adams in the summer. He has kept playing, though, making 17 league appearances so far and scoring five times in the process. He has also won four penalties for his side this season, more than any other players, so his presence in the box will be one to watch out for this evening.

Sky Bet Odds

Town: 9/4
Draw: 11/5
Birmingham: 5/4

Match Officials

Referee: Darren Bond
Assistant Referees: Mark Jones & David Avent
Fourth Official: Christopher Sargin


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