Andy Munro on a late Blues win.
If I’m honest, this is a game where we got out of jail. Brentford looked a lot classier, stronger and more confident on the ball although perhaps that’s to be expected given that they had the resources to splash out almost £3 million on one player. Luckily for Blues that player wasn’t a forward and it was clear that Brentford have yet to replace the free scoring Andre Gray.
In the first half, Blues rather nervy approach developed into a series of misplaced passes and it looked even bleaker when Donaldson received a heavy knock which was to eventually end with him limping off. However, to their credit, the team dug in and grittily defended until, in the second half, a superb pass from Toral gave Maghoma a chance to finish in style – something that he is becoming accustomed to these days.
However, Blues then suffered a catastrophic blow when Kuscak spilled a fairly straight forward shot to let in Brentford for an equaliser that had looked unlikely despite their dominant possession. This gave them the overriding momentum and the Blues’ subs of Vaughan, Shinnie and Davis hardly set the pulses racing.
Yet Blues never seem to know when to give up and it was Vaughan who used his pace to good effect to break away and square to Kleftenbeld to sweep home amongst scenes of unbridled delight in front of a celebrating Tilton. In fairness to Gary Row ett, the Dutchman’s lung-busting run was made possible having the defensive security of Davis guarding the defence and allowing his run.
Soloman- Otabor grew in confidence as the game wore on and should be an adequate replacement for the likely to be departing Gray. While he shows an abundance of skill and pace he has yet to take on board the experience of knowing when to release the ball. We all wish Gray the best but it’s noticeable that in discussing the likely transfer the term “the player and his agent” was oft-used.
It’s a bit disappointing, however, that the release clause is merely £3.75 milliob and one can only hope that there are a number of lucrative add-ons. Gray is definitely a talent but whether he is an ‘outstanding’ talent remains to be seen. He’d certainly gone off the boil at Blues perhaps due to his head being turned so if the transfer receipt is used wisely maybe, there may be a silver lining to this transfer window cloud.
Time will tell but meanwhile it’s onwards and upwards.