Often Partisan

Kevin is no friend of ours

My reflections on the Blues v Wolves game at St Andrews today:

1) Kevin Friend

I’m not normally one for moaning about refs, but I thought Mr Friend was abysmal today. Yes, maybe the penalty for them was legit, and yes, maybe Craig Gardner did deserve both bookings – but where was the consistency? Wolves dived, niggled, elbowed and generally acted like animals and the ref barely gave us anything. How Karl Henry managed to stay on the pitch for ninety minutes is beyond me; elbowing Beausejour off the ball in front of the ref and getting away with it is absolutely criminal. Something was clearly remiss because the Blues players looked continually incensed, and we’re normally a bit more respectful than that.

2) Cameron Jerome

I feel for Cameron. For an hour he was the lone man up front, chasing scraps from clearances and challenging for headers against Wolves players who were getting away with murder. And yet people slagged him off for being “lazy” or “shit”? I will grant you that Jerome isn’t up with the very best ability-wise, but his workrate is second to none and he tried his very best to give us an outlet. People say “he hasn’t scored for six months” – yet many of these are the kind of people who are urging us to re-sign Chucho (4 goals in 36 appearances). If you could see the good work that Chucho did for the team, then you should be able to see what Jerome does for us. Yes, he’s not world-class, but we’re Birmingham City not Barcelona and he tries his best with the crap he’s given. Mark my words, if he moves on he’ll get goals elsewhere.

3) Jean Beausejour

I was very impressed with our Chilean winger’s performance. He gave us a lot more down the left, and was frequently trying to help Jerome in winning and retaining the ball upfield. Despite being virtually strangled by a Wolves back four intent on fouling their way to points, he kept at it and won at least a couple of free kicks in dangerous positions. He seems acclimatised to the Blues system, and to the British game – and I think he’ll be a good player for us in the long run. I think McLeish should seriously give consideration to keeping Jean on the left in the next game.

4) Safety?

I’ve said in the past that 38 points would keep us up (and for those of you who keep saying it, yes I did originally say 36 and that might have been a bit wrong), so surely with 39 we’re now safe? I’d like to believe we are, especially as we’ve denied Wolves two points, but I’ll be happier if Man City can get a result against West Ham today. With three games left four points is a lot for teams to overhaul, and hopefully we’ve done enough to limp across the line. I’ll be happier if we can get points against Toon and/or Fulham though.

In essence, it was a tough game, and a point won. When Gardner went off I thought we might struggle, but credit to the lads they worked and battled hard and we may have now done enough to ensure top-flight football next season. It’ll be interesting to see if McLeish goes for it up in Toon though.

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2 Responses to “Kevin is no friend of ours”

  • ivor bollocks says:

    Thoughtful and well written as always Almajir, well done.
    However item no 2 has a few holes in it, Cameron Jerome IS shit, you are right, his work rate is good, but we are fighting relegation because of his lack of ability to score goals.
    many thanks Ivor Bollocks

  • Dan says:

    re: the penalty, having seen it from a better angle Foster cleans out the ball comprehensively – exactly as I initially thought. some fairly ludicrous officiating today.

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