Lee Bowyer and Birmingham City got off to the perfect start to their 2021/22 season, with a 0-1 victory against promotion favourites – Sheffield United.
The players were welcomed to out to a roaring away end, with club anthem ‘Keep Right On’ being belted around the Yorkshire ground.
It was a lively start to the game, both teams looked sharp. Tahith Chong looked particularly energetic in the early stages, and even gave the Blades an early scare.
The breakthrough eventually came for the Blues in the 19th minute. Jérémie Bela put in a vintage, pin perfect cross, which was capitalized on by his fellow wing-back, Maxime Colin.
Sheffield United continued to dominate in terms of possession, but Blues solid shape and impeccable work rate was too much for the Blades to break down.
Chong, who was certainly a shout for Man if the Match, was the star of the first half. He was fantastic defensively and was top quality going forward, the full package for sure.
Naturally, Sheffield United took control in the second period, but still really lacked any worthwhile chances.
Blues shotstopper Matija Sarkic got lucky on more than one occasion, but came away unscathed.
The match could’ve been done and dusted if Scott Hogan has taken his opportunity that certainly looked harder to miss than score, however, he still achieved the former.
As the game ticked on to the later stages, Man Utd loanee, Chong had to be brought off with a hamstring problem, Croatian midfielder Ivan Sunjic was his replacement.
Blues continued to defend and keep Sheffield United at bay for the rest of the game, with the Blades only collecting 2 shots on target in the entire 90 minutes.
Bowyer will believe he got this one pretty much spot on. The only fault that could be brought up would be opting for Jérémie Bela, who never really looked comfortable at left wing-back.
Blues now look forward to their cup clash with Colchester on Tuesday night before the much anticipated meeting with Stoke City next Saturday.
Possesion – Sheff Utd = 75%, Blues = 25%
Shots – Sheff Utd = 16, Blues = 9
Shots on Target – Sheff Utd = 2, Blues = 2
Fouls – Sheff Utd = 3, Blues = 12
Goalscorers – Maxime Colin (19′) (BIR)
MOTM – Tahith Chong (BIR)
Blues Position – 5th
Player Ratings from this fixture will be out tomorrow!