Report: Blues 0-0 Coventry City

Report: Blues 0-0 Coventry City

17 September 2022

Blues drew against Coventry City in the Sky Bet Championship on Saturday afternoon.

John Eustace's men could have won it at the death through both Lukas Jutkiewicz and Auston Trusty, whilst Juninho Bacuna had the day's best chance early in the first-half.

The outcome sees Birmingham City's unbeaten run stretch to three matches and means six of the last nine meetings with the Sky Blues have ended level.

Before kick-off, there was a minute's silence followed by the playing of the National Anthem as football continued to pay its respects to Her Late Majesty Queen Elizabeth II who passed earlier in September.

TEAM NEWS:

The Head Coach made a single change to the side that started the win at West Bromwich Albion on Wednesday night. Marc Roberts missed out after being withdrawn against the Baggies, with Jordan Graham returning to the side after recording an assist on his last appearance in the win at Preston North End.

The cover of Blues News paid tribute to Her Late Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.

The cover of Blues News paid tribute to Her Late Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.

MAIN EVENT:

Coventry were enjoying the bounce of the ball in the game's infancy and Jonathan Panzo headed a wide free kick over the crossbar after just two minutes. However, it was the hosts who would have the best early chance, with Bacuna putting a low Tahith Chong cross over the crossbar from eight yards out.

In the passages that followed, John Ruddy comfortably fielded shots from Jamie Allen and Gustavo Hamer, and the latter then lashed at a volleyed opening as the game continued to move from end to end.

And when the ball was next contested in the visitor's penalty box, Trusty saw his flicked header hacked away inside the six-yard box before Hamer forced Ruddy to parry a long-range strike in front of the Tilton.

The aforementioned Brazilian and his midfield partner Allen would both fire further attempts off target as the game, which showed no signs of slowing down, reached the midway point of the first-half.

More opportunities came, this time for Birmingham, Chong tried his luck from range but the radar was out and although Bacuna managed to get his leaping header on target, Ben Wilson was able to gather this in the Sky Blues' goal.

Ten minutes out from the break Ruddy did well to adjust and stop a Krystian Bielik intervention from creeping in at the near post and this was matched by his opposite number to stop a Bacuna free kick on stroke of half-time.

Blues' Captain, Troy Deeney, in action at St. Andrew's.

Blues' Captain, Troy Deeney, in action at St. Andrew's.

HALF-TIME: Blues 0-0 Coventry City

Blues set about their opponents at the start of the second 45 and were just inches from leading after 53 minutes. Maxime Colin recycled possession back out to Bacuna and his delightful cross was glanced on by Hogan only for a rooted Wilson to stop it on the goalline.

However, things were not moving with the same impetus as they had been and Eustace introduced Hannibal after the hour to inject a fresh burst of energy into his team.

The Tunisian's excellence in possession tight to the far-side touchline saw Panzo booked and Blues were beginning to turn the screw in their second West Midlands derby of the week.

Jutkiewicz was then introduced to partner Hogan as the home side made their intentions abundantly clear going into the closing stages, although the frontman's first job was to head clear a Coventry corner.

But it was clearly the away side feeling the pressure and Hamer lost his cool, kicking Hannibal in an off-the-ball incident and being given his marching orders by referee Graham Scott in the penultimate minute of normal time.

This set up a grandstand finish and Jutkiewicz looked like he had won it going into four additional minutes, only for Kyle McFadzean to head it over from under his own crossbar. And at the death, the whole of St. Andrew's thought Trusty had delivered the win at the far stick, with a reflex save from Wilson ensuring the spoils were shared.

Hannibal made a real impact when coming off the bench.

Hannibal made a real impact when coming off the bench.

KEY MOMENT:

Had Bacuna's early shot found the back of the net rather than going into orbit it would have been likely that Blues, given their latest results, would have kicked on to secure a third successive victory. As it was, and battle as hard as they did, the ball just refused to go in.

Juninho Bacuna was an important creative force yet again for Blues.

Juninho Bacuna was an important creative force yet again for Blues.

FINAL OUTCOME:

The draw takes Blues onto 12 points from their first ten Championship outings of the 2022/23 season.

MATCH DETAILS:

Blues (3-5-2): John Ruddy, Maxime Colin, Dion Sanderson, Auston Trusty, Josh Williams, Juninho Bacuna (Hannibal 67), Krystian Bielik, Tahith Chong, Jordan Graham, Scott Hogan, Troy Deeney (Captain) (Lukas Jutkiewicz 79).

Substitutes not used: Neil Etheridge, Jordan James, Jonathan Leko, George Hall, Jobe Bellingham.

Booking: Sanderson 88.

Coventry City: Ben Wilson, Callum Doyle, Kyle McFadzean (captain), Jonathan Panzo, Fankaty Dabo, Jamie Allen (Kasey Palmer 77), Gustavo Hamer, Ben Sheaf, Jake Bidwell, Viktor Gyokeres, Matt Godden (Tyler Walker 77).

Substitutes not used: Simon Moore, Martyn Waghorn, Todd Kane, Josh Eccles, Jack Burroughs.

Booking: Sheaf 53, Panzo 72, Dabo 88, Hamer sent off 89.

Referee: Graham Scott.

Attendance: 16,633.

NEXT UP:

The first Men's international break of the season is followed by back-to-back away games. Blues visit Sheffield United in a fortnight, kick-off 3pm, before taking on Middlesbrough at the Riverside on Wednesday night, kick-off 7.45pm. Home comforts return in three weeks' time, with Bristol City travelling to B9. Tickets for all fixtures can be purchased by clicking here!