Often Partisan

New Heroes

Birmingham City continued their fine start to the pre-season last night with a 4-0 win over Shamrock Rovers at the Tallaght Stadium. Goals from Lee Novak, Nikola Zigic, Callum Reilly and Matt Green saw Blues easily dispose of the League of Ireland side although the night was overshadowed by what could have been a bad injury to striker Matt Green. Thankfully the former Mansfield man was up and about in the dressing room post-match with seemingly no ill effects from being knocked out.

I have to admit, I’m missing pre-season this year. I’ve not managed to get to a game yet due to other commitments and it seems like I’m missing some good action. It’s a new look Blues side this year; new personnel set up in a new formation and I think it’s kinda exciting to see how things are going to pan out after what has seemed like a summer of woe.

Because I’ve not seen them play I can’t talk about how the newbies have played on the pitch; I can only go by the impressions I have formed by what I have read online and from speaking to people who have been there. It’s interesting that I keep hearing how players are hard-working; that the team has energy and youth and that the strikers are straight away into the goals. It seems almost plain to me that Clark has taken on board that some of the most dangerous sides last season (Hull and Watford immediately spring to mind) played with wing backs and that he has decided that may be the way to go forwards with the personnel we have.

Obviously, we can’t read too much into pre-season; the intensity is nowhere near as high as the league calendar and there is nothing at stake. However, I think it’s pleasing that the fitness levels are already up there; Shamrock are over halfway through their league competition at the moment and thus you’d think that they would be at proper match sharpness levels in comparison to Blues who returned to pre-season training just a couple of weeks ago. Blues aren’t quite up to full strength yet either; they’ve been playing with either rookies (Jean Kalenda) or makeshift centre-backs (Hayden Mullins, Jonathan Spector, Mitch Hancox) and it will be interesting how much they step up a gear with Kyle Bartley and Dan Burn properly installed.

Whilst Blues have been bringing in players from the lower leagues and from Scotland this summer, it’s pleased me that the players that Clark have brought in are all itching to play for Blues and I think it’s already translating on the pitch. “Young and hungry” might be an overused cliché but I do think it’s something that we lacked in the first part of last season at least; it might just be that the extra little bit of effort that we get from players who are at Blues to prove themselves will be what pushes us that extra bit further.

It’s too early to say yet, but I’m beginning to think that this season could be a new start; we might have lost all bar Zigic of our Carling Cup heroes but it’s a time for a new battle and it might just be that new heroes have stepped up to the plate. More than ever I’m looking forwards to seeing if that’s the case.

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58 Responses to “New Heroes”

  • mark says:

    Dan – that’s great news regarding Matt Green…………..

  • Sir Tait says:

    Where’s number 3s mention?

  • JimBob says:

    Play-off winners this season! you heard it here 1st! Roll on august 3rd we owe watford a spanking!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • mark says:

    Dan- great summary as usual…………..out on that pitch there are new heroes, playing better football, scoring goals without the likes of Marlon and shabba…….who would have said that……

    Even better news Dan the likes of yourselves are itching to get down there…………hopefully the thousands who are refraining from returning will also feel that way eventually…. only by word of mouth will this happen…… the turning point for fans imo if we can beat watford at home…………

  • Les Samuels says:

    50yrs blue and luv em to bits but pre-season means nothing.bottom 6 unless buyer found but i hope im so so wrong.k.r.o

    • mark says:

      so if we got off to a flyer we need new owners?? unfortunately they go when they are ready…….
      what we do on the pitch will have absolutely nothing to do with new owners…….imo that’s like saying if we get relegated that will that get rid of them any quicker!!!!! horses for courses………..

  • Zenzero says:

    Lets not get carried away here. There’s a long way to go yet, I can see some struggles but I think we will surprise a few. A mid-table finish is the aim, aslong as the new lads and the team show effort ill be happy!

  • mark says:

    http://www.birminghammail.co.uk/sport/football/football-news/sammy-yu-opens-his-heart-on-his-shock-249492 was reported september 2010 sammy believe Carson is the right person, and has the club at heart………..

  • StaffsBlue says:

    What happens behind the scenes, well, there’s bugger all we can do about that. It’s a complete fiasco.

    Regarding the team/squad, I’ve been positive and optimistic through the whole close season so far. I’ve not had a negative thought at all… and that’s down to trusting Lee Clark 100% to get it right. So far, he’s justified my confidence in him and more.

    It’s far too early to think of automatic promotion. Although the pre-season has gone well so far, we haven’t seen what this group can really do yet. But, I’m fully expecting a Top 10 finish and maybe, with a bit of luck, the play-offs.

  • kpg says:

    As always there will be joys and sorrows but I do think there will be more joys in the coming season. Lee Clark has brought positivity to the team and we are attracting young players seeking to further their careers and not the past their sell by date old pro looking to cast into retirement. I would be happy with mid table mediocrity next season but can’t wait for the season to start, brng it on….KRO

  • JohnR says:

    I think there is a chance you are getting carried away. Games against a non-league side and an Irish league side should be easy, it’s when we play against hardened Championship sides we will see if the new Blues can hack it. I’m going to reserve judgement until I see them against Watford.

    • StaffsBlue says:

      No one is getting carried away. People are hoping that we do well this season and the signs are looking good. There’s nothing wrong with a having a positive attitude. Better than the usual doom-and-gloom merchants. We all know what’s going on behind the scenes, it’s been done to death. I’d rather concentrate on the football and look forward to the season. That’s not getting carried away.

  • SteveC says:

    Lee Clark is doing an amazing job under difficult circumstances.
    Am looking forward to seeing Eddy Ghanore get a chance, he only young but looks a great talent.

  • geraldsquires says:

    Shall We continue to back slap clark when the real ball comes out mmmmmm? And not after weve beaten a couple of pub teams

    • Ali Duncan says:


      • mark says:

        may i join you Ali mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm

        • Ali Duncan says:

          You may Mark but I’d like to point out that I beat you on the volume of the same needlessly repeated character ;)

          • chas says:

            But Mark beat you with his needlessly repeated silly comment about Zigic’s wages.

          • mark says:

            you sure did Ali

            Chas – tell me you have not lost your sense of humor i do realize the weather is hot , it certainly bright up other people’s day… in fact he on more money than me damn………………lol

  • Chris Walker says:

    Though not to be a kill joy, we should not be carried away with these results, as good as they are.
    I have seen many pre seasons in my 50 years plus of support of BCFC.
    We have had good ones, winning all the matches then come the real test of league football it has all been undone and we have struggled, on the other had we have had poor pre seasons and had the opposite effect come the new season.
    What is important is that the players get fit and have an understanding with each other and work on set pieces.
    This is a new, young and exciting squad, like the editor, I have not yet seen them play, but from the write ups and the comments, it sounds promising for the new season, LC will be a manager well sought after if this is a successful season.
    I don’t think promotion would be a good thing this season, with all the financial problems, but LC will certainly be looking for a play off place, and I think the majority of supporters would be happy with a top half finish this season.
    We will certainly cause a few upsets and maybe even another visit to Wembley with a good cup run.

  • sutton apex says:

    Hate to be a party pooper but we had a great pre-season last year and then started badly in the league. Cant read much into these games other than fitness run outs- however i think lee has assembled a hungry and out to prove a point squad, quietly optimistic we can finish 10th

  • mark says:

    nice to see the forever positive fans arrive on the scene maybe it time to shake a leg, and get behind our team. Get down there, and see for yourselves……kit looks fantastic ………be proud to be a bluenose…………

  • Ali Duncan says:

    Pleasing to see four different scorers. Wins breed confidence. Looking forward to seeing how we do once the first whistle goes in anger.


  • dave mann says:

    two good resulte seven goals scored ,but lets take it easy and not put to much pressure on lee.
    its comming together nicely but were bound to have hiccups on the way so lets chill in this hot
    weather were having and see what happens.KRO.

    • Andy W says:

      I agree Dave. This is a new group of players. They need time, as they needed time last season to gel together and for the manager to see what his best side and positions are. It was no surprise to me that we had a slow start, and I don’t expect this season to be any different. A lot of the team won’t know each other in the footballing sense, and most of them are inexperienced at this level. There are a lot of strong teams once again in this division. We can’t expect miracles at once, and likewise we shouldn’t be judging ourselves against a couple of opening games. I believe a little patience will be required, but I have to say I am quite positive about the side that LC has put together.

  • JohnBond says:

    Basically birmingham won’t be sold within the next year unless Carson gets sent to prison or realises that he’s going to be sat in jail for a long time decides that sucide is the best way.. And then we might get sold abit quicker.. Can’t wait for Carson to get sent down would say have street party’s in Birmingham but the state of the city i can’t see that happening in the next 1000 years either KRO

  • Glynn says:

    I can say one thing about the new look Blues this year. We are going to be a massive side, with most of the starting 11 WELL over 6 feet tall. some of the players are monsters pysically. Kyle Bartley has calfs the size of my neck.

    Worth backing goals from set pieces.

  • the timms says:

    I can categorically state that we’re definitely going to win the league.

  • mark says:

    maybe it is fool hardy to be cheerful about the present results so bloody what………….imo bloody loving it…………………kro

    • StaffsBlue says:

      Maybe the Ferguson deal is practically tied up then. That’s the only reason I can see for letting Bell go out on loan. He would probably have been 4th choice on the left, behind Murphy, Hancox and Ferguson. Maybe Clark is thinking of keeping trialist Liam Davis then too.

  • oldburyblue says:

    We might get new owners, we might not; We might get promoted and again we might not. What is more or less certain is that we are going to have some fun this year. I think the years of going home with a flat feeling after a boring win or draw are gone. With the new players and proposed system of play I am very optimistic of getting my money’s worth this year.

    • StaffsBlue says:

      Good attitude oldburyblue!

    • Chris Walker says:

      The Financial side will rumble along for ever and a day but the footballing side is what we want to see.
      LC has said he learned from last years mistakes and he also said he listened to what the supporters were saying, he has gone away had a short break and been busy rebuilding.
      He is also getting the players to learn a new system, something that may have been part of the problem last season, certain players not wanting to change.
      This year he has his own squad and doing things his way, which on the pre season showing should be a exciting season, we may take some defeats but we will not go down without a fight.

  • StaffsBlue says:

    Blimey… and we thought we had it bad last season! http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/football/23240104

  • Richard Granfield says:

    Tom Ross has Tweeted that the agreed deal to buy Blues has nothing to do with Sammy Yu or any other Chinese consortium.
    I pray that he is correct.

  • sonabluenose says:

    in years gone by we havent really given the kids a chance for one reason or another, but now our circumstances demand we throw them in and see what we have. noone can moan now that we dont give the kids a chance but now we have little choice and i think its great,these youngters now have a chance to go out impress and stake a regular place in the team. moral must be real high among the squad at the moment

  • StaffsBlue says:

    He was a decent player and a cracking lad… but I don’t think he had enough for this level. He’s been around a bit since he left Preston, he’s done the rounds a bit, without being taken on, so I’m glad the lad has got himself a decent contract now. It’s a good club Northampton, with Adie Boothroyd as manager. Good luck Darren, I hope it works out for you.

  • StaffsBlue says:

    Just read Paul Robinson’s Captain’s Log (Day 2.) He reckons that sexy Specs (Spector) is the only person he’d leave his wife for. lol

  • Tony says:

    Interesting point about taking time to gel, lets not forget it was feb when Clark finally got some cohesion last season. Sure hope its quicker than that this time.

  • Tony says:

    In a previous blog I mentioned about the worst performance at left back I had ever seen, well the player I was referring to was Darren Carter. It was horrible but I didnt blame Carter for that performance it Was Potato head Bruce who played him there.
    Bruce did the same with many other players he seems to have a thing about full backs he fills in with anyone.
    As has been mentioned Darren was a nice lad and always gave his all but he lacked a little for this division and lacked a lot for the premiership, But for all that history will recall it was his spot kick that won us a place in the premiership your names in the records Darren so good luck.

  • Evesham Blue says:

    We will do well. Its only the championship after all! An improvement in our home (which wont be difficult) and we should be in the mixer.

    I think the home form will improve as the atmosphere wont be like a morgue this year…How can you not be optimistic?

  • chas says:

    Darren Carter went on loan to Sunderland and was a big hit up there, so much so that they asked for him back and Darren wanted to go. Bruce said no as he needed him, but then played him in the Reserves all season.. Sunderland agreed a fee as did Albion and he made the mistake (imo)of choosing albion as it was nearer to home..Bruce did what he often did with young players, fecked up.

  • clubclassblue says:

    It was good to have a first look at some of the new faces against Shamrock Rovers. Let me say that I am sure Doyle will not be making any more appearances at centre forward.
    Early to make comments really but I thought Novak and Lee looked ok, kit looks good and there looked to be a good togetherness with the players.
    Looking forward to the new season now and trying not to think too much about the ‘chinese situation’. Nothing to do really but await the outcome and hope that we get a steady start to the season followed by some good news from the courts.

  • […] intimated the other day that despite the departures from the team that have brought a lot of (legitimate) concern from […]

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