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Gary Rowett wants more of the same from his players

When we are at our best, when we counter attack into space, we can hurt teams with our pace and athleticism.

Gary Rowett
It is now onto Elland Road and Leeds United on Saturday before the next international break.

And said he hoped Blues would perform in the same kind of manner as they did at Griffin Park.

"When you analyse games over the past couple of weeks, we have played well in games, created chances, but I don't think we have been as solid. We gave too many chances away in those games.

"I just wanted us to get back to that, to our identity, on Tuesday. To be tough to play against, be solid. To limit the opposition to possession not actual chances.

"That's what the game is about. It's about what you create rather than how much ball you have.

"When we are at our best, when we counter attack into space, we can hurt teams with our pace and athleticism. That's what we did especially in the second-half at Brentford.

"I am all for exciting, attacking football. That can come in many forms, lots of possession, great movement.

"It's not something we have been particularly great at, whenever we have done it. You see what happened against the likes of Rotherham, when they drop in and make it hard to play against.

"We are good at breaking on teams, running into space, we have got some really, really quick athletic players.

"And I felt at Brentford, when we needed to, we had more control about the way we passed the ball."

Rowett made a couple of changes in midweek, restoring Paul Robinson to the heart of defence for his first league appearance since April.

"It was really difficult decision I had to make.

"I've just felt as though, once or twice, I've wanted a left-footer there, just for a bit of balance.

"Jonathan Spector has been as good as any of our defenders.

"I said to him that he has been away with America, a long journey, I nearly rested him after he came back.

"He is going to go away again the next international break, so it is a tough time. I didn't want to push him too hard.

"The danger with that always is he knew when I told him that if we played well at Brentford, kept a clean sheet, it becomes very difficult to change (the next match). I will have a decision to make on that one.

"But it's important they all contribute.

"Jacques Maghoma, I think he would be very disappointed he has not had more starts. But I think when he has come on, he has been absolutely electric.

"He has probably had as much effect in 25 minutes of games than he has if he has played 90 because he can change things with his pace and movement."

After successive St. Andrew's defeats in the league sandwiched a draw at Ipswich Town, Blues went into Tuesday's game in hand under a little bit of pressure. But they bounced back.

"They have always done that," noted Rowett.

"It's been said we've never lost back to back league games but we did, last season, Ipswich and Brighton away.

"We lost very heavily in both of those.

"But we have always responded, as we did then.

"It's ridiculous to say isn't it, but you almost felt the last week or so that we were in the bottom three - but we needed to win on Tuesday to go fifth.

"You always have to be a little bit realistic about where our expectations are. I appreciate we have raised those expectations somewhat.

"But, you know, I think we worked incredibly hard at Brentford and it was a great reaction from the team and great character. I am really pleased for the players and supporters."

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