Often Partisan

Zigic – was Clark right?

Callum Reilly today told the Birmingham Mail he thought that striker Nikola Zigic has been one of the hardest working players in the last two games. With Lee Clark attracting criticism in several quarters (including here) for his decision to go public about his thoughts on Zigic’s training, the question is does Lee Clark deserve some credit for the way the Serb has played of late?

There is definitely no denying that Zigic has played well in the last two games. Against Sheffield Wednesday he could (and probably should) have scored but his link-up play was really good; he gave the team a presence up the top of the pitch and showed that there is much more to his game than aiming balls at his head for him to flick on. Similarly, against Peterborough Zigic showed that he has a footballing brain, making good passes to set the wingers off, playing a part in winning the ball for the start of the move for Chris Burke’s goal and scoring by being in the right place at the right time to tuck in Burke’s parried shot.

Therefore I can understand why some people would point out that Clark deserves credit. Zigic is one of those players who can look quite languid and he oftens plays best when he’s wound up. Clark’s harsh words called for a response on the pitch from the player and Clark has received that – and it’s coincided with another four points from the team. Job done?

However, there is also the argument that it wasn’t necessary. Whilst Zigic is undoubtedly a drain on the team’s meagre finances it’s also germane to note that he is about the only player we have who can turn a game on its head on his own; his presence on the pitch alone causes opposition managers to rethink tactics and change defences and he has a talismanic quality that seems to inspire the team and the fans. He may be languid but he also is the kind of player who gets affected by what is happening and he can get put the effort in when it’s needed – to the extent that a thoroughly rattled Zigic will start dropping into midfield to pick up the ball and launching himself into tackles to win the ball back.

The deciding factor for me isn’t a strictly footballing one – I think that the whole affair was a PR disaster. As much as Clark may have felt justified in what he was saying and as much as he felt he needed to be open it caused division between the fans. Before the game it was one of the most talked about things online and during the game it polarised opinion so much that when chants for Zigic broke out at 0-3 fans openly scuffled on the Tilton. In the current situation with finances being precarious and the league position not being brilliant the absolute last thing we need is for there to be open division in the fans and there is absolutely no doubt in my mind that making this criticism was wrong because of the division caused.

Hopefully we can put it behind us now and move on; the last result in particular has opened up a little breathing room between us and the bottom of the division and maybe people can breathe a little easier. I sincerely hope that Zigic maintains the form he is in between now and the end of the season because we need him – with Marlon King again suffering with his knee we’re short of firepower and the onus is more than ever on the big Serb to do what he can in attack to help us win games.

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119 Responses to “Zigic – was Clark right?”

  • chudlt says:

    I believe LC could have achieved the same effect by keeping the issue “in house”.

  • chas says:

    Whilst I agree with most of what you put,I didnt think i was neccesary to mention his wages again.. , I would prefer to pay Zigic his money and stop paying for McDermott..Now he does seem a waste of money..Zigi aways tries ( to me), he has changed the course of the game almost every time he comes on ,( usually after 85mins) , and the twice he was sent off ths season were both due to th fact that he tried too hard to get the ball back, durng two matches when no-one else in the team looked as if they could be bothered, as you mentioned in yuor last but one paragraph….

    • almajir says:

      How do you know McDermott is a waste of money?

      Do you know what he does on the training ground?

      • chas says:

        I dont Al. I am just going on what I saw of him earlier in the Season when , in three matches that I saw (including the Barnsley one) he just sat looking at his feet for almost the whole match,ofered no help whilst we were getting thrashed.. I dont know any more than mst who post on here, but that doesntstop anyone, does it..

        • Paul Carter The Voice Of Reason he says:

          I very much doubt you spent three matches watching Terry McDermott

          • chas says:

            Paul, it is a great pity that you dont read what is posted before you make yourself look silly..I watched three matches on the Internet, they were absolutely disgraceful ..The Cameraman, for reasons unnowt to me, kept panning to the Blues Dugout(not to Clark, to the dugout where McDermot was sitting and every time, he was looking down at the ground and spitting between his feet..Not once did they catch him looking towards the Pitch, nor offering any help at al during thematch..If you didnt see the pictures, dont call me a liar..I am a lot of things. but I am NOT a liar .

          • Paul Carter The Voice Of Reason he says:

            No, now you put it right now I can see it has a ring of truth to it.

            Cos that’s what cameramen at 3 different football matches do aint it.

            Film the assistant manager all game.

            Do one.

          • almajir says:

            Paul

            If you can’t cease being offensive I suggest that you “do one”.

            Opinions are great but try being civil

        • James Black says:

          Strange chas as i remember a whole heap of moaning about Clarks over animated body language. So one day the manager can show too much passion and his lost the plot, another day the coach can look at his feet and apparently his not worth his money. But of course as you have no idea what Mcdermott does and your not there at the training ground i dont see the point in you raising it. Seems that if people dont feel its appropriate one week to hit Clark or the board, then its time to find another one to hit and on and on it goes.

      • John says:

        Neither McDermot or Fazackerly show any enthusiasm during the game. If you love football,it would be impossible to sit in the dug out for 90 minutes,hardly moving !

        • James Black says:

          I’m impressed with how many experts in body language we have around St Andrews. Thing is you read what you want to read but you have no idea what runs through there head. I fancy a girl over the road, but i don’t lick my lips and shudder everytime she walks by. Does that mean then i dont fancy her after all.

    • Paul Carter The Voice Of Reason he says:

      Seems being the operative word.

      Why does he seem to be a waste of money to you?

      Do you monitor what he does each day?

      Jesus

      • Brumboi says:

        I agree Paul.

        I’ll admit I don’t know what McDermot does or doesn’t do, but I’ve seen many offensive comments about him on this site, and have always wondered what such comments are based on.

        As for sitting there doing nothing comment; Isn’t this the case with most assistants? I’ve rarely seen an assistant get up barking orders, it’s normally the manager who does that during a match.

        • Grimlin says:

          Going back to Mark Bowen, it’s been the way for fans to try and seem more knowledgeable in their attempts to slag off the club.

          As Paul pointed out, it’s very unlikely this guy watched McDermott for 3 games. Knowing most blues fans, he probably doesn’t even know which one McDermott is!

      • chas says:

        You are right, I said SEEMS.. Pity you dont understand english Jeeze..Anyway, no more will I argue with you.

  • JohnR says:

    As I said at the time LC had every right to have a go at Zigic if he felt the big man wasn’t putting in the effort I said, as you say now, to go public was a PR disaster. Hopefully it’s all in the past and both LC and Ziggy have learnt from it and we move on.
    Zigic can be frustrating at times but I agree with you that he is the one of the players we have (Burke being the other) who can change games. I have never understood why in some games Clark has been reluctant to play him.

    • chas says:

      Top Post, IMO,. sir..Says it all and no need for anything else..

    • Brumboi says:

      Whether Clark is right or not to not start with Zigic in all matches, one things for sure, he’s now the 3rd manager to do so. That’s FACT.

      • James Black says:

        Agree Brumboi. i aint gonna say anymore about Zigic positive nor negative as right now his producing, but i think its fair enough to say it hasn’t always been the case and often didn’t deserve a start. Right now he does and his getting it and as you said Brumboi, 3 managers previously had the same thinking. Using Zigic politically to swipe at Clark is all wrong as Clark has said before he spoke to him in house 3 times, it didn’t work whether that divided the fans or not is not here or there. So was he supposed to keep taking him in the office and saying now now Nicholas this is the fourth time now, then week after now Nicholas this is fifth time now, now here we are Nicholas its the sixth time now. IT WASNT WORKING WAS IT HE CARRIED ON TAKING THE URINE. He went public and suddenly everyone forgets about the mediocre times and that Zigic is playing better for the public bollocking. Has anyone seen the standard of complaints on this site alone and how just about everything from the colour of the paint in the boardroom to the brand of sandwiches in the canteen upsets the precious little fans so whats the fuss as regards division. Many bask in the division and have been for months and wanted protests including many here, so why is that all down to Clark.. Stop making so much of it and Zigic is doing it now yes, i emphasize now yes now.

  • Flying Doctor says:

    LC was right to drop Zigic, but wrong to go public

    • glyn rees says:

      But Doc if he had done that with no reason given then the fans would be ripping LC apart yet again
      He is damed if he does and damed if he dont

      • Flying Doctor says:

        Not necessarily. All LC has to do is come out with “he’s injured” then no dirty washing in public, whilst rest of players know what to expect if they step out of line.

        • mighty_bluenose says:

          Most people on here have said many times they’re not happy with club not saying anything now you want them to say something but liar??? LC did the only thing he thought was right, he challenged a player he thought was doing it in training and was honest about why he was dropped.

          Imagine if he had said his injured and his not so media shy agent had come out and said something to the contrary people would have been after his blood for lying to the fans!

          As many have said he is damned if does or doesn’t which is the honest truth of the matter.

          • Flying Doctor says:

            These things need a lid kept on them. No one can condone Zigics actions, but players do cause managers problems. Every club needs unity, and all you have to do is look at the mixed reaction amongst the fans to see that LC shouldn’t have gone public. I’m sure similar kinds of thing happen at every club, but you rarely hear about it.

  • James says:

    Although I agree with dropping him, I still dont agree with Clark branding him ‘disgusting’ and simply saying he wasnt working hard enough in training would have been enough to satisfy the fans without a public personal attack on the player.

    Though I do think Clark realised this when only 3 days later he went 180 degrees and was full of praise for him

  • Boozy Blue says:

    He was wrong to do it in public, it may have had the right reaction on the player but the fallout in the fanbase was not considered and it’s created a more clear pro-con clark divide

  • Andrew Whalley's hat says:

    I think he was completely justified in going public. What people seem to forget is that he’d had Zigic in his office no less than three times previously and that had no effect. What was he supposed to do? As they say the ‘proof of the pudding..’. That being the case his tactics have obviously worked in the last two games.

  • Blueboy 88 says:

    Totally agree a complete PR disaster , a divisive act by Clark that split the fanbase right in the middle of a relegation battle.

    Zigic does what it says on the can, just a huge presence that puts defenders under pressure.
    But he has got to play regularly to get the best out of him , not short little cameo’s off the subs bench.

    Chris Burke summed him up perfectly..
    “He frustrates defenders even if there are three around him and that creates space for the likes of myself to get on the ball.
    “With his aerial presence, even if he doesn`t win it he causes problems ”

    With King carrying a knee injury , & whether you like him or not , we need Zigic to lead the attack strongly for the rest of the season.

    • nuneatim says:

      If there was a problem it should have been sorted out in house with a hefty fine. Dropping our second top scorer for a game we lost 0-4 and the resulting PR disaster did nothing for LC’s reputation amongst already sceptical fans. Happily Zig is back and scoring and hopefully the whole sorry mess is behind us.

  • skareggae72 says:

    From what looked a terrible move from Clark now looks a bit rosier,especially when people come on here and say “so Zig scored again,its all thanks to Clark humiliating players”…i’m not convinced myself,i don’t think its made a massive difference,certainly not in the long run,Zig is Zig,he is not going to change for Clark,who cares about training anyway,come in,go through the motions,don’t get injured,go home,but step it up on Saturday & give your all.
    I hope this public humiliation of players is something Clark is NOT going to use on a regular basis,the list grows to two,Zigic,Jervis.

  • RichardW says:

    If it was a running problem, maybe Clark was correct in making it public at last. We don’t know how many times it had been dealt with ‘in house’ prior to this and Clark may well have been at the end of his tether. It was a PR disaster because instead of just making a neutral statement saying why Zigic had been left out Clark issued an emotional rant that made him seem in the wrong. ‘Languid’ certainly is the word for Zigic and neither McLeish, Hughton nor Clark have been totally happy playing him all the time as first choice. Whether this has caused Zigic to take it easy in training we don’t know but he seems to have woken up for now.

  • Ernie says:

    Why was it a PR disaster? Employee swings the lead, hacks off his colleagues and manager, employer – after three warnings – decides to act and make it public. Nothing wrong with that nor the obvious effect it had on Zigic. Too many people will find any stick to beat Clark with. Public humiliation of players? Redmond makes a bad pass that leads to a goal, Clark points out fact. Jervis? Don’t make me laugh. Shocking footballer not good enough and Clark didn’t criticise him. For all the time Clark praises the team and Redmond, as he has done recently, no one says a peep instead just hammers him for everything and anything. Throughout all of this Clark has consistently says he and Zigic gets on well, there was no fall out and he likes him. But as the manager he had to stamp his authority on a professional who was letting himself, the team and the club down. If Barry Fry had done it everyone would be going ‘good old Baz, he’s great isn’t he?’

    • mark says:

      well – done Ernie tell them straight, but unfortunately you cannot please everyone, it appears mate….

    • almajir says:

      I disagree – Zigic always gives his all on the pitch. His performance level hasn’t changed really if the truth be told.

      I try to be fair to Clark, and I have nothing against him rollocking a player in private for not cutting it on the training pitch. To do so in public however did nothing but divide the fans and make him look even more combative.

      • Alex says:

        Al,

        whilst I agree it was divisive and open to debate as to whether he should of gone public. I think its the reasons Clark decided to go public are more interesting.

        The goalposts have changed for managers with social media etc. The rumour mill is in overtime (Fahey, Ravel and the pool etc). Also the criticism at times has been misplaced, Yes he has made mistakes, Yes he is naive at times, but he has only ever said positive things about the club and the fans, despite the apathetic support at home games, and having no money to spend.
        Considering the resources he has at his disposal and the uncertainty around the ownership, I think he has handled all that nonsense pretty well, whilst clearly learning, he has never shirked the challenge or complained.

        With Burke in this form, Zigic playing well and Hancox in the team, I look forward to a positive end to the season.

        KRO

      • mark says:

        Hi Dan, Zigic had enough rope given by Clark, unfortunately Zigic fail to respond earlier to Clark demands of his attitude and commitment. This left him with one last alternative, and to me this appears to have worked. I am sure we will agree to disagree, but I will go with Clark on this one. Sorry say it again Clark tried in house three times, and Zigic was simply was not engaging with Clark. Hopefully we can move forward now, possibly see the best of the big lad under the stewardship of clark. I believe the spat has now end. As for the split in the fanbase that simple support your team and your manager and unite as one.

  • Kaje says:

    I’m going to be further controversial and say that Clark has had nothing to do with Zigic’s performances in the last two games.

    Let’s face it, he didn’t look awful for the few games before – he’d come on and changed the way we looked for the better, he’s always been hard working but people see his wage tag before his performance.

  • garconsavage says:

    I think the most pertinent thing you have said comes in the last paragraph of your blog. I think most Blues fans have drawn a line under Ziggygate . Why have you found it necessary to re-open a debate that will only cause more division. Time to move on methinks even if you are struggling to find topics to “blog” about!!

    • Paul Carter The Voice Of Reason he says:

      The sad thing is whether it’s right or wrong the points we took since have been great.

      Had we lost both games since it would have been cos of Lees attack on Ziggy.

      It’s a shame the reverse doesn’t apply and we can put the points gained down to Lees attack on Ziggy.

      But that wouldn’t do.

      At the end of the day If Zigic had done his bit in training every day none of this would have happened. Cue the antis telling me Lees made the whole thing up

  • Paul Carter The Voice Of Reason he says:

    If Lee hadn’t sorted Zigic out he would have lost the dressing room.

    Instead everybody in the squad is aware that of they don’t put a shift in they don’t get picked.

    Lee played it exactly right and affirmed he is the boss and leader of this club.

    Try getting behind him instead of looking for faults

    • Ed says:

      I am with you Paul. I don’t get to see many games as I live over seas, but those that I have seen when Zigic has played have left me unimpressed with his performance. He rarely busts a gut to get to a ball or chase down a player, so in my opinion LC was right. I Remember Mcliesh saying he was teaching him how to jump to head a ball !!

      • chas says:

        Ed, he has been sent off twice this season for trying to Bust a Gut chasing down balls…He has been the only one trying by the looks of it in some matches.

  • Grimlin says:

    Ask yourself whether fans would’ve reacted the same way to Chris Hughton was it him that dropped Zigic.

    I think that will give you your answer.

    • blaneh says:

      If the circumstances were exactly the same as they are now, wouldnt make jack all difference who the manager was, there would of been the same reaction from fans.

    • roskoe says:

      I just can’t see the situation getting to such extremes with CH, plus I think Zigic would’ve got the starts and minutes on the pitch under CH so that this would never have been an issue.

  • Bluenosesol says:

    Doesnt do us much good to keep harping on about a potential PR Faux Pas. Its history….Lets move on and concentrate on continuing our good form against Hull!

  • mortonsblue says:

    So we are all agreed then a PR disaster! The reason Zigic played well is that he has started the last games nothing to do with LC’s rant. Always puts in a shift on the pitch and that’s all I am interested in.

  • Richard Granfield says:

    Nikola Zigic is important to Blues’ if he plays anywhere near 100%.
    Let’s compare him to any other player in the squad……Nikola has 57 caps for Serbia…..nobody else comes close. Lee Clark’s job is to get Nikola playing to his maximum,which by publically criticising him seems to be working.
    Pat on the back for LC’s man managment skills.

  • Roy Smith says:

    What a relief that we are struggling to find topics to blog about. Such a change from having dozens of topics, all negative arising every day.
    My view on Zigic, he can go to training and curl up in a sleeping bag for all I care, fact is he always gives his all during matches, and he is one of our 2 genuine game changers. If he’d been played regularly all year the bust up with LC would probably never have arisen.
    Whatever the case none of us know what really happened so to slag off either Zigic or LC is pretty pointless. KRO

  • mark says:

    Forget the wages for one moment, look at someone with the attitude and the commitment to the course whether you like or not Zigic head was not with it. sorry to say it again Clark has every right to do what ever he feel fit bring this matter to a swift closure, but not everybody appears to get the trick. Hard working, putting in a performances yeah right maybe for himself, not for the team In my opinion if he had continued way he was going, i would have let rot in our development team until he got the message loud and clear. But lee been a man surprised even me by playing him the rest is now history. Some fans are still going on about fines, Clark did not fine him, just told him his wake up call good management.
    I applaud the public criticism well-done lee keep it up, and it working big time since this has happened. lol. i bet Sir Alex would be proud..sorry i forgot Sir Alex does not do that. does he..kro inclarkwetrust This family of bluenoses are loving it….more.more

    • blaneh says:

      Seriously 4 points off 2 very poor teams an some people still think LC is amazing. Would you still be saying the same if we had lost the last 2 games. I very much doubt it (although Certain LC fanboys still would be).

      Credit to LC for the last 2 games, but it hasnt changed my opinion on him one bit, I still think he is totally out of his depth and still think his public rant at Zigic was wrong.

      Please prove me wrong Lee nothing will make me happier, but somehow I dont believe it will happen.

      Also ask yourselves this, If everyone had backed LC in his decision on Zigic instead of the split of the fans and terrace chants, do you think Zigic would of started the last 2 games? I dont believe he would of and I dont believe we would be sitting here with an extra 4 points on our seasons tally.

  • Ian B says:

    If LC had picked Zigic whenever he was fit and available, there would not have been a ‘PR Disaster’. Thus Clark shouldn’t delude himself with the idea that going public got the best out of Zigic when in fact picking him regularly would have done the same.

  • roskoe says:

    I think that if Zigic had played more games from the start or at least came off the bench with more than 5 minutes to go in more then he would be on a greater goal tally and Blues’ points toal would be higher. He didn’t need to be publicly humiliated, just played. End of.

    KRO

  • Tony says:

    Performances in training mean nothing, its what happens on the pitch on Saturday that matters as I have mentioned before Paul Mcgrath never trained but was usually man of the match. At this stage of the season you just need to keep ticking over.
    Zigic is a big player an international, and a match winner as he has proved many times. Going public was a disaster, thats the thing with Clark he seems to talk to much to the press and Im sure he reads blogs such as this as excellent as this site is he should be above it. Regards Mcdermot from accounts of previous clubs he tells jokes and puts cones out in training, occasionally running rounds the pitch with one deposited on his head, hardly scientific methods

    • Paul Carter The Voice Of Reason he says:

      ‘From accounts’ lol

      Where are these ‘accounts’? How come you’re the only one who knows about these ‘accounts’

      You know jack and make up half the stuff you post. Not happy with being negative at all times you have to resort to fairy stories to post more negative.

      No Blues fan in my eyes wants to run the club down with so much enthusiasm he makes up stories

      • RichardM says:

        Paul – the “account” came from a Huddersfield fan who posted earlier in the season on this site, warning us about Clark and his ineffective back-room staff.

    • marky mark says:

      This deep knowledge of Paul Mgrath wouldn’t have anything to do with you being a Vile fan would it
      ???

  • Roy Smith says:

    Humble apologies. Can I just comment that I agree totally with Roskoe

  • Brumboi says:

    Does anyone have the stats of how many times NZ has been bought on as sub in the last 5 minutes? Or better still, have stats on what minute he’s come on in each of the matches he’s been sub?

  • Art Watson says:

    A PR disasters from a disastrous manager ,

    Should have been kept in house but Clark lacked the management skills to deal with it.

    Zigic maintains he always gives his max!

    Clark obviously disagrees but we only have his public version of events.Zigic has handled the situation very professionally which contradicts Clarks view of him.

  • Tony says:

    Think Art sums the matter up perfectly,in the words of the song

    ( that just about does it Dont it)
    End of

    • mark says:

      Just as question so you think Zigic is bigger than the manager? may pigs fly
      Asked whether Zigic could have made a difference with Marlon King also injured, Clark said: “Who knows? We’ve ended up losing the game but I’ve not changed my opinion one little bit.

      “The decision I made was correct and proper, the principles are the same. Every day I’ve got high standards and there will never be one player bigger than this football club.

      “There’s been a split opinion about it – there’s some who have said it’s the right thing and some have said my man-management is in question because I should keep this in house.

      “Well, I’ve kept it in house because this was the fourth time I’ve had to have this conversation with him. There’s only so much you can keep in house before you have to go down another route.”

      Reflecting on his dealing with Zigic, Clark added: “I don’t think I was particularly strong, I just said what I had seen. I think there was a bit of a hullabaloo made of it, really. Does the tail wag the dog?end of mate inclarkwetrust. You be waiting a long time for the player version…end of.

    • Blue in Spain says:

      No, as usual Watson sums up the anti Clark point of view, which you, Tony, as an Anti Clark poster jumps on and can’t agree quick enough with, Art once again calls Clark a liar, however, we can’t have a go at Art or he’ll throw his toys out of the pram and leave. If an employee of yours, Art, was warned privately 3 times, but refused to toe the line, what would you do?

  • carlos says:

    Zigic is the best footballer we have in terms of reading and understanding the game. All people see is 6′ 8″ ungainly beanpole, they do not see him dropping off and collecting the ball and setting Burke free, or the first time pass round the corner for King to get a shot off, or the centre half climbing all over him whilst the centre midfielder is stepping all over his toes. He is never going to chase lost causes and run the channels, he hasn’t got the physic and would be wasting the qualities and energy that he does have.
    I was sat about six rows back in the Tilton right behind the goal against Stoke just after the cup win when Zigic scored the winner. Now some would say that he just nodded it in from under the crossbar, but I saw the effort and determination he showed to get to that ball in front of big hairy arsed Stoke defenders like Huth and Shawcross and believe me he wanted that ball.
    I don’t doubt that he gets frustrated, he gets no protection from referees, and often gets silly yellow and red cards. I also believe he gets frustrated by Clark and I think that is what led to Clark blowing a gasket, not Zigic not putting the effort in in training but Zigic questioning some of Clark’s decisions.

  • marky mark says:

    Really don’t think we needed to open this can of worms again, but It’s your blog AJ

    Another chance for the LC out brigade to have a go pathetic.

    Not contempt with that some are having ago at McDermott performance when none of you have the first clue what makes a good coach, just because he doesn’t rant and rave on the touchline another pathetic comment.

    And as for Zigic being whiter than white, don’t make me laugh the reason he has responded like he has is because he knew he was out of order.

    I agree , LC should have toned down his comments a little bit, but the end result is points on the board.

    As I said at the start can we not move on we are BCFC not Eastenders

  • Ted says:

    No matter what the circumstances, a manager should NEVER use the media to personally attack and humiliate any player. What on earth did he expect the fans or public at large to do?

    The effect of LC’s disgraceful negative action was unsurprisingly negative:
    (a) Bad publicity for the club
    (b) A confused and divided fan base
    (c) A 4-0 thrashing by Watford

    In response, Nicola Zigic made a short statement assuring fans that he would always give 100% to Birmingham. To his great credit, he accepted the manager’s decision to drop him and refused to make any further comment.

    LC subsequently tried to undo the damage by making a further public statement that diametrically opposed the first. He said that NZ had worked harder than anyone else in training and would now be restored to the team.

    The outcome of this more positive action was unsurprisingly positive:
    (a) Happier fans
    (b) Typically strong performances from NZ
    (c) 4pts from 2 matches

    One final point: In order to secure his signature and commitment, Birmingham City FC entered into a contract with NZ, which included a substantial salary. The vilification he has endured since relegation for simply banking his wages is unjust and dishonourable.

    At this crucial stage of the season, it is the most united camps that will prosper. So let’s give 100% support to the whole club – at least until May!

    Onwards and upwards. KRO

    • marky mark says:

      Ted, a well written post.

      Unfortunately to many so called fans on here haven’t got the intelligence to understand the benefit of supporting the team and Manager until the end of the season, they are more interested in childish comments they cannot back up

    • blaneh says:

      signed.

    • carlos says:

      Absolutely bang on the money Ted. Clark even made reference to this in his press conference, something along the lines of he is going to upset some people as he knows how popular Zigic is, yet he still saw fit to do it. Now that tells me that Lee Clark is not working for the benefit of BCFC, hes working for the benefit of Lee Clark, using the press conference as a way to prove hes the bigger man. Not the way to gain respect, as the subsequent performance proved.

      • mark says:

        Zigic played his face, clark dealt with it, he is our manager, and if players like Zigic step out line again they are going to get the hairdryer treatment lol. Damn right as well. nothing about been a bigger man. c’mon sense has prevailed hopefully Zigic be at top his game until the end of season. Unless he falls short again with attitude and commitment.

    • mark says:

      to further that comment Ted… you would have to restraint Sir Alex,in some circumstances it may be necessary became some players just don’t get it. Again keeping to my word that in this circumstances this player Clark had every right do what he did and it paying off. We as fans should be completely backing him not lambasting him.

      • blaneh says:

        Mark, LC is NOT Sir Alex, one is a succesful manager over many years, the other is not, so please stop comparing the two.

        While i agree that we should not be having a constant go at LC and focusing our attentions towards supporting him and the team, the last 2 games have not and will not have changed peoples perception of him over the course of nearly a season.

        • mark says:

          sorry blaneh maybe misunderstood the only comparison I was referring too, that Clark was entitled to make public Zigic attitude and commitment and desire to the course. If it good enough for Sir Alex hairdryer players it good enough Clark would you not agree.

  • Art Watson says:

    Good post.

    Living abroad I only get to see the occasional match on Sky.

    I have never seen Zigic not but in a shift -he may have had a bad game but I got the impression he was always trying his best.

    Apart from Clark has anyone seen Zigic not give his best during the live games they have watched this season.?

    • marky mark says:

      When did he say he hadn’t give his all in a live game
      Your making things up now

      As the sun frazzled your brain ?

      • Art Watson says:

        Sorry,

        I have just asked the question so how am I making things up -it’s a question not a statement.

        23c in Cyprus so not hot enough to frazzle even my tiny brain.

  • fredthetweet says:

    Seems to me that now Clark has won a game the world is suddenly a rosy place. Hence we can forget about the man-managment bo**ocks he’s dropped that have led to us being grateful for beating Peterborough, yes that’s right, Peterborough.

    Clark is a master of psychology. He gives a totally believable impression of being completely incompetent, hence lowering expectation to unprecedented levels, thus enjoying praise for the tiniest success. Behold the master of illusion, I for one salute him.

  • sutton apex says:

    big zig always puts in a shift – if he has a fault he never charges in on 50/50 headers, makes him seem uncommitted but i think thats just his style. His passing and flick on’s and general link up play has been very good of late. Dont think clark should have gone public with his criticism – but hey its worked and they have both moved on. Don’t think we can get anything at hull, but those next 2 home games will define our season – MINIMUM 4 POINTS A MUST

  • PutneyBlue says:

    Firstly, in terms of bad PR because of LC outing Zigic – LC should not be thinking about what will the press and fans say about this. His only concern should be what the squad think about it. LC can’t predict if outing Zigic will divide fans, it might just as easily united them. I’d prefer a manager who is gives honest opinions, after considerign the impact on his squad, rather than try and get good PR.

    Secondly, there’s a lot of talk about how much Zigic has improved since his “outing” by LC, but I think there has been a more important and dramatic improvement in one other player – Burke.

    How has this improvement come about? Is this credited to LC man-management or because nothing has been said publicially do we assume its just the natural ups and downs in form of players?

    • chas says:

      Burke was playing rubbish until the Transfer window..His upsurge in form is nowt to do with the Zigic affair.

      • marky mark says:

        For once Chas you have said something I agree with.

        Burke form picked up when he realised he was staying here for the rest of the season and not going to Forest.

  • BND says:

    No Clarke was not right.
    He is paid to manage the players.
    When things are not going right or when players develop an attitude etc is when good managers come into their own.
    Going public is the easy way out and any one of us could manage in this way.
    He also has staff to support him.
    If I was paying his wages I would be far from impressed.
    Crap management and crap PR for the club.
    KRO

  • Bluenosesol says:

    Guys, we have a match on Saturday, all this bitching about LC, PR, Man Management, you are doing Almajir a dis-service and turning his blog site into an onlive version of Hello Magazine and frankly boring the *rse off many of us…..

    • marky mark says:

      With respect bluenosesol.

      AJ created the blog Zigic- was Clark right ?

      If its boring you perhaps you should tell him not the posters.

      That said every blog ends up in a slanging match between the LC haters and the rest of us
      Lol

  • bluenoseneil says:

    I will simply answer the question that Almajir posed.

    YES.

  • mark says:

    got to say it warming nicely now for that Saturday match between blues and hull…………….c’mon you blue boys unite we stand unite we fall……kro

  • northfield says:

    I will simply answer the question that Almajir posed.

    NO

    Ziggy always works hard in a 1st team match!

  • northfield says:

    Trouble is with some blues fans.. we win and draw and suddenly were gonna make the play offs. I have one at work who said we should of drew with Watford??? Ffs and yea he’s a LC fan.. get a grip LC fantasists!

    SOTV

    • Bluenosesol says:

      Stone me your right!! Sod the dreams of staying up, lets prepare for our relegation party!!

    • James Black says:

      Northfield, Well cant fully agree as i believe the majority had realistic expectations all along. Some may of gone overboard and spoke of play offs but most didnt. Only the ones that thought that we was gonna breeze into the premier at the beginning of the season are the ones that are moaning now. Its not Rocket science to work out that the club is going thru a transition period which may still take a long time to sort out. I don’t think its right to say that many over reacted to some good results but some didn’t over react to some bad ones either. Its just how you go about things but i believe most are happy with survival till the transition goes thru.

  • bluenoseneil says:

    BBC Sport website feature on the 24 Championship teams at the start of the season:

    BBC Radio WM’s John Platt: “Birmingham approach their second successive season in the second tier in much better shape squad-wise than they did this time 12 months ago.
    “Only young midfielder Jordon Mutch has departed so far, but this has been more than compensated for by the arrivals of Darren Ambrose, Hayden Mullins and Ravel Morrison. Another newcomer, Peter Lovenkrands, looks set to form a potent strike force with Marlon King.
    “The goalkeeping position is interesting with the rise to prominence at the Olympics of Team GB’s Jack Butland. Another tilt at the play-offs isn’t beyond Blues.”

    Wel he was a bit wrong wasn’t he???….

  • Cornish Bluenose says:

    I fully understand the different opinions posted on this site..debate in an intelligent way and listen, and respect other’s points of view please…
    We all want Blues to progress and reach safety his season, and to provide entertainment for the fans with something to cheer about..let’s debate our manager at the end of the season and we have more information on the financial position and ownership of the club. While l am not a LC supporter, he has not had an easy time and needs time to develop a team around the younger talent emerging through the ranks. We could have an exciting team next season full of pace and commitment…so KRO to the end of the season and let’s work together for a common aim..supporting our club.
    Paul

  • matt says:

    Zigic can’t work hard sitting on the bench! You know what you’ll get from him! He’s a big lad and he’ll never look pretty but play him to his strenghts and can be a real handful!

  • Mac says:

    There has been a lot said about LC’s use of Zigic this year. So I thought I’d have a look at last season under CH and see how he used our big striker
    46 league games
    In squad 35 times
    Started 19 times, Played all game 4 times (5 goals) subbed 15 times (5 goals)

    Started on bench 16 times, not used once, used 15 times (1 goal)

    Playoffs 2 games
    Not used once, Played all game once scoring 1 goal
    Don’t know about Europe (except he didn’t score)
    So in conclusion, I don’t think CH was overly impressed and his 12 goal tally included 4 in one match.
    I’m not sure why he gets such a good ride by so many blues fans. I think he’s very over rated.

    • mark says:

      just continue with the stats 2012-13 from bcfc website at the moment 24 appearances, 13 as substitute 7 goals, and 14 shots on target…

      • BluenoseDownunder says:

        Here are Zigic stats (courtesy of espnfc.com);
        23 games, 7 goals, 5 assists, 22 shots
        Hardly good figures are they for one of the top paid strikers in the competition? Agreed that he has scored some crucial goals but who’s to say 1 or 2 half decent strikers for the same money wouldn’t have done the same or better than that. Lets hope after the kick up the backside from LC these stats will improve by the end of the season, i doubt it?

    • chas says:

      Are you taking into acount the fact that he was injured for a long time and came back very late? Very few players rerach their peak immediately after returning from a long layoff.

  • Spud says:

    Biggest load of tears in years!
    Clarks done it now, big deal, right or wrong, get over it…. Zigic has!
    Al do a proper blog next time

  • BhamCityJulian says:

    My initial thoughts were that LC shouldn’t have gone public. However of he thought NZ’s agent would spill the beans maybe he thought he had no choice

  • Tony says:

    Seems like every time Paul speaks he is proved wrong

    • Blue in Spain says:

      Like to enlighten us with you thoughts or are we just meant to guess?

    • James Black says:

      Thats your opinion Tony. I think the kick Paul carter campaign is getting tedious personally. None of us are right all the time but we are all opinionated. Dont know why Pauls comments get rebuked when i read far worse by others, gets personal perhaps.

  • Wingman Blue says:

    This time last year where were we? Where are we now? Were we split down the middle? Or were we united behind CH?
    Our problems with Carson Yeung were there when CH began the season, we played more games, yet we did so much better. Zigic was in both seasons. The only thing different is Clark.

    It ain’t rocket science.

  • Evesham Blue says:

    Simple facts are since Zigic was dropped and come back into the team he appears to be doing what he should be doing. So I guess you got to say LC does deserve credit for motivating him.

    You would be calling LC a liar if you doubt what he said about Zigic’s attitude in training. It wasnt the first time.

    Consider this also – LC did not have to bring Zigic back into the team so soon. He could of let him rot or held a grudge.

    So it did the trick and is consistent with what LC has always said about working hard on the training pitch.

    He was on a hiding to nothing either way


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