MATCH PREVIEW:Birmingham City -v- Wednesday

Wednesday started their big week off with a point against Burnley, can they do better when they travel to the West Midlands to take on Birmingham City?

The Owls drew and perhaps could have won but they could regain a place in the top six with a win at St.Andrews.

Last game Opposition Result Shots On target Corners Cards Fouls Possession
WEDNESDAY Burnley(H) D 1-1 14 5 3 1 12 54%
BIRMINGHAM Bristol C (A) D 0-0 9 2 0 1 8 48%

Wednesday played out an entertaining draw against Burnley but will be disappointed by a sloppy start that saw them a goal down within minutes. The Owls swiftly improved and good work from Adthe Nuhiu set up Kieran Lee but Wednesday failed to capitalise on this and the draw was probably the fair result.

Birmingham survived a Bristol City onslaught in the first half to claim a point last weekend, Jacques Maghoma of all people led a second half revival and the Blues could have snatched the points had James Vaughan connected on a late header.

Last five games Burnley(h) Shrewsbury (a) Reading(a) Leeds(h) Bolton(h)
WEDNESDAY D 1-1 L 3-2 D 1-1 W 2-0 W 3-2
Last five games Bristol C(a) Ipswich (h) Derby(a) Forest (a) AFC Bournemouth (h)
BIRMINGHAM D 0-0 W 3-0 W 3-0 D 1-1 L 2-1

Wednesday haven’t been at their best on their travels this season and have struggled to keep goals out away from home recording just three clean sheets, their last being the 1-0 win at Fulham, no other team in the top half possesses a worse record away from home than the Owls.

Birmingham are unbeaten in the league since their 3-0 reverse at S6 on Boxing Day, the Blues did what Wednesday have struggled to do and pulled off great results against top opposition winning at Derby and sending Ipswich away from the West Midlands with nothing to show for their efforts. The Blues have also won their last four home encounters.

HEAD 2 HEAD WEDNESDAY WINS BIRMINGHAM WINS DRAWS
32 34 24

LAST MEETING: 26th December 2015,Hillsborough,Att – 28,523

Wednesday 3-0 Birmingham City

(F.Forestieri 35,48, K.Lee 37)

Wednesday were the last team to beat Birmingham in league competition, dispatching them fairly easily on Boxing Day.

Since the Owls returned to the Championship in 2012, Wednesday have had the better of recent encounters losing just one of the last seven, a 4-1 defeat in September 2013, one of only two home wins for the Blues in 2013/14.

The Owls however did record a victory on their last trip to St.Andrews, Stevie May and Jeremy Helan scored the goals as the Wednesday triumphed 2-0.

CARVALHAL’S COHORTS

Tom Lees played for the under-21s on Tuesday and is edging closer to a return, Carlos Carvalhal could persist with Sam Hutchinson at centre-back but may also revert to Vincent Sasso to allow Hutch to give us a more solid base in midfield.

Aiden McGeady may get his full debut after a brief cameo against Burnley.

WESTWOOD

HUNT

HUNT

HUTCHINSON

HUTCHINSON

LOOVENS

LOOVENS

PUDIL

PUDIL

WALLACE

WALLACE

LEE

LEE

BANNAN

BANNAN

FORESTIERI

FORESTIERI

HOOPER

HOOPER

NUHIU

NUHIU

KEY PLAYERS

Kieran Lee is one of the survivors of the Stuart Gray regime and his game has come on leaps and bounds this season under Carlos Carvalhal, he’s added a few goals to his already solid midfield play and is perhaps one of the unsung men in the team given the success of Bannan and Forestieri.

Jacques Maghoma is finally showing that he can play at this level after two anonymous seasons at Hillsborough, he can be a dangerous winger on his day and those days seem to be more often now, with our defence looking vulnerable on occasions, he could be a danger.

THE BETTING BOX: 5 OF THE BEST

BET Wednesday WIN Birmingham WIN DRAW Lee 1st Goal Correct Score 1-2
BEST ODDS 2/1 18/11 23/10 16/1 10/1
BOOKIES Marathon Bet logo Marathon Bet logo BetVictor-logo Bookies Badge Skybet 888 SPORT logo bookies

HERE COMES D-JUDGE

We held our own against Burnley but that was at Hillsborough where we’ve been excellent and on the road we’ve been average.

We’re coming up against a Birmingham side who are much better than they showed on Boxing Day at S6 and will be eager to not only prove us wrong but to get a leg up on us in that race for the play-offs.

The Owls have been far too lax defensively in the last few games and have gifted sides goals, the Burnley goal was an extremely poor one to concede and followed by the poor goals conceded at Shrewsbury and Reading, it makes you realise how much Tom Lees’ presence has been missed.

Carlos Carvalhal always has a tactical plan though and he’s not afraid of switching systems or personnel up to suit the situation, he has his preferred plan of attack like all managers but he’s smart enough to adapt when needed, if he has the right plan and the right execution, we could record a win in this and come May, it could be a massive three points.

I just have a bad feeling about this though.

VERDICT: 2-1 Birmingham

Danny (D-Good) Owls Alive
E-MAIL: admin@owlsalive.com
TWITTER: @OwlsAlive or @StirchleyOwl


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