Birmingham City and Huddersfield Town couldn’t be separate in a game where chances were few and far between.
Gary Rowett’s men made a sluggish start to proceedings as the visitors dominated possession and carved out a chance which striker, James Vaughan, put past the post from just outside the area. The Blues took the lead against the run of play, as captain Paul Caddis made a great lunging tackle in his own half, which lead to him crossing the ball into Cotterills path, and the Welshman made no mistake as he drilled his shot past Alex Smithies.
The scores were level just before the half hour mark. A long throw in by Jack Robinson caused chaos in the Birmingham area. The ball fell to Spector , but a lack of communication in the blues ranks created a chance for former Blues trainee Joe Lolley to pounce and stab the ball into the back of the net; A goal which should of been easily dealt with by the Blues defence, as several players waited for each other to clear the ball, but non reacted quicker then Lolley.
A second half freekick for The Blues, just outside the area gave Caddis a chance to test the keeper, and he did as Smithies had to react quickly to tip the freekick over for a corner. Blues made their first substitution when Wes Thomas was sent on for Shinnie after 68 minutes. Thomas’ introduction almost paid immediate dividends as the Blues number ten was only denied a goal thanks to a superb last-gasp challenge by Terriers captain Mark Hudson deep inside his own area. Blues enjoyed their most productive spell towards the end of the game, but failed to capitalise. A bursting run in the 88th minute by Lloyd Dyer could of seen Blues take all three points, but his shot was fired into the side netting. Huddersfield Town may of felt unlucky to come away with only a point against a Birmingham team which weren’t at the races for the majority of the game. Two sides which wont be taking the league by storm any time soon, not the most exciting game from a neutrals point of view.
Darren Randolph – 6 – Wasn’t troubled much by Huddersfield. His distribution at times was poor.
Paul Caddis – 7 – Had a good defensive game, his attacking runs create a lot of opportunities for Blues but it often left a hole in the defence.
Jonathan Spector – 5 – His indecisiveness to not clear the ball lead to Huddersfield’s equaliser. Poor passing from the American which often lead to Blues being on the back foot.
Rob Kiernan – 6 – Probably Kiernan’s worst performance in a blues shirt. Looked shaky in the early stages of the game but as the game went on he found the form that is keeping fan favourite Paul Robinson out the team.
Jonathan Grounds – 7 – A good showing from both blues full backs today. Not as attacking as Caddis but has developed into a very solid left back.
Robert Tesche – 5 – Produced very little going forward, was out muscled more and more as the game went on. Match Fitness could be questioned and with Stephen Gleeson available for the next match, his starting position may be under scrutiny.
David Davis – 8 – Yet again another solid performance from the ‘Player of the Season’ favourite. Strong going into tackles, often calmed the game down and when he lost the ball, he gave everything to get it back.
David Cotterill – 6 – Apart from scoring Blues’ only goal, he didn’t create much on the wings. Whipped a few good corners in but lacked the pace or skill to beat the last defender.
Andrew Shinnie – 7 – Abit of a mixed emotions game for the Scotsman. Was always looking to turn the defender but it very rarely came off. Could be argued he didn’t get the service he required to change the game.
Demarai Gary – 5 – A very quiet game from the youngster. He had a couple of chances to run at the defence but didn’t create anything from them. Not the same player that attracted attention from promotion hopefuls Bournemouth.
Clayton Donaldson – 6 – Wasn’t given the service he usually gets from his teammates. Didn’t have a single chance to try and test the Terriers keeper.
Wes Thomas – 6 – Worked his socks off, chased every ball and made sure the defenders knew he was there. More game time will do Thomas the world of good and boost his confidence.
Nikola Zigic – 6 – Usually a player brought on to give the fans a boost and to knock down long balls, but the 6’7″ serb was winning tackles and playing the ball around. Played a fantastic ball through to Lloyd Dyer in the dying minutes of the game.
Lloyd Dyer – 5- Apart from having a chance right at the death, the Watford loanee was never in the game.
Alex Smithies – 6 – Not the only keeper that didn’t have much to do. Made a good save to deny Paul Caddis.
Tommy Smith – 5 – Quiet but effective. Gray’s pace caused him problems at times. Didn’t offer much going forward.
Mark Hudson- 6 – Made a number of brave blocks and challenges, not least to deny Wes Thomas what appeared a certain goal after the second half and he led by example at the back.
Joel Lynch – 7 – Completely nullified Clayton Donaldson’s physical impact up front for the Blues and was sensible in his use of the ball. Gave a lot for the Terriers cause against tough opponents.
Jack Robinson- 6 – Recovered from the early setback of Birmingham’s goal deriving from his side of the field to have a say in the goal with one of his arrowed long throws and was composed thereafter before injury forced him off late on.
Jacob Butterfield – 6 – Pulled the strings and gave Huddersfield an out ball at times when they came under the cosh, but his final ball was sometimes lacking.
Jonathan Hogg – 6 – Won back possession and offloaded the ball to the likes of Butterfield and Coady. The Terriers looked stronger in defence with his performance.
Conor Coady – 6 – Failed to press his claims of a permanent return to the starting 11 with a rather subdued display. He was firm in his tackling and neat with his passing, but needed to be quicker on and off the ball.
Joe Lolley – 6 – Showed predatory instincts to anticipate where the ball would land before stabbing home. Some of his decision making and final deliveries from out wide in the final third were lacking.
James Vaughan – 6 – Fought hard on his own up front for large periods and his runs out wide often stretched a suspect-looking Birmingham backline. His hold-up play was good as he looked to invite runners to aid him in attack.
Harry Bunn – 5 – Substituted early on with a recurrence of his hamstring injury.
Sean Scannell – 6 – Similarly to Lolley, there was plenty to praise from his performance, but his final ball was often not good enough to breach the home side’s defence. He did up the ante when he emerged to replace Bunn early though and proved a point to his boss.
Oscar Gobern – 5 – Did little when he came on other than produce two shots which were both wayward. Provided an added body in midfield to prevent the Blues from countering late on.
Murray Wallace – 5 – Only came on for the final stages so didn’t make an impact.