Andy Munro watches as Blues are beaten by Cardiff City.
This was definitely a case of after the Lord Mayor’s show as Blues put in a turgid performance and were deservedly beaten by a more energetic and determined Cardiff side.
The high pressing game that had been so successful against the Baggies was nowhere to be seen as the Blues team looked devoid of energy against visitors who had had an even shorter break between fixtures and were backed by a vociferous band of supporters who did the Welsh team proud.
Mind you, generally it was a poor turn out of home fans but playing on Valentine’s night with the match also live on Sky, plus Champions League football on TVmakes you wonder about the EFL’s fixtures secretary who is , however, no doubt beholden to the Sky gods.
The match itself was a non-event for the home side and the man I felt sorry for was the Juke, who must have won 90 per cent of his headers with nobody latching on to them. Scott Hogan was too often behind the front man while Tahith Ching and Juninho Bacuna were ineffective in an attacking sense.
Although we conceded two goals, the return of Harlee Dean helped the defence to be generally solid for at least eighty minutes whilst the introduction of Emmanuel Longelo and George Hall at least injected some energy into the side.
There’s certainly plenty for John Eustace to think on as he selects the side against Huddersfield, now a Neil Warnock team who will certainly be no pushovers.