Birmingham City v QPR

Team: Green, Onuoha, Traore, Assou-Ekotto, Dunne, Hill, Hoilett (O’Neil), Barton, Jenas, Morrison (Carroll), Doyle (Keane)

Subs Not Used: Murphy, Hughes, Henry, Benayoun.

Attendance: 14,500 (including 1,348 R’s fans)

I enjoyed the performance on Saturday, what a difference when we move the ball with purpose, attack in numbers and get behind defences, must be a new way of playing! Well done to Harry and co. The return of Joey Barton was key to a better performance. He never stopped working and kept the ball moving which put us on the front foot.

Armand Traore and Benny Assou-Ekotto exploited the wide areas but generally lack an end product. Ravel Morrison was excellent and as long as he plays in the right areas he will make the difference in our push for promotion.

A special mention for Jermaine Jenas who had a good game and dovetailed well with Ravel Morrison and supported and/or got beyond Doyle and attacked the box. I couldn’t believe how many bodies we got into the box at times, another novel tactic Harry!!!

The main let down was Junior Hoilett again. Great feet but he runs out of ideas and his decision making is poor.

Great turnout and support by the travelling Hoops. It was a shame that Benny Assou-Ekotto couldn’t be asked to acknowledge us!!!

Just a mention of the Birmingham fans – I looked around the stands of sad bluenoses watching a very poor team, supporting a club with no finances and an owner behind bars. Real fans don’t deserve that.

£174m in debt Tony Fernandes, mmmmm, makes you wonder what really lies ahead for us?


A decent game with plenty of possession, and a much needed and deserved 3 points against what has to be said was a poor Birmingham outfit. Ravel Morrison looked dangerous throughout the game.

Given that Armand Traore was our main wide threat in the first-half, I have no idea why we seemed obsessed after the interval to consistently ignore him and feed Junior Hoilett who was so poor to say the least.

As for Assou-Ekotto, I am a big fan of his technical ability however his behaviour after the game was simply unacceptable.

Our fans once again done us proud, a good day, a good result, although I’m yet to be convinced. Still a long way to go, we fight on.

Jimmy Murray


Ravel Morrison struck a double as he returned to St. Andrews to haunt Birmingham and pave the way for QPR’s first win in six games. Morrison, who resurrected his career at Birmingham last season, scored from a splendid 14th minute free kick and netted an easy second in the 72nd minute to plunge his former club to their 12th successive home game without a win.

But Rangers, bankrolled to a staggering £65.4 million loss in their unsuccessful bid to retain Premier League status last term, made hard work of their return to winning form and may point to the need for a more ruthless streak despite the 2-0 score-line.

Recent poor form has been a serious set-back to their promotion aspirations when they have lost ground to the two top Sky Bet Championship clubs, Leicester City and Burnley, to the consternation of their popular manager Harry Redknapp.

They were boosted by the return of the influential Joey Barton, and the London club took command very early in the proceedings and should have scored a more conclusive win.

Crisis club Birmingham – who this week saw owner Carson Yeung sentenced to six years in prison for money laundering by a court in Hong Kong – battled bravely and played with plenty of early attacking energy only to be thwarted by Rangers’ experienced rear-guard.

Rangers stamped their authority on the game in the 14th minute after Birmingham’s skipper Paul Robinson conceded a needless free kick on Kevin Doyle and earned the first booking of the match. It was from the resultant set-piece that Morrison opened the Londoners’ account with a high floated shot to the right of goalkeeper Darren Randolph’s groping fingers for his first goal for the Championship side since his on-loan move from West Ham.

Birmingham’s best chance of an equaliser came three minutes later and it was only a world class save by Robert Green which enabled Rangers to maintain their advantage. Emyr Huws, a young player of rich promise, powered in a free kick which bounced high towards the top far corner of the net only for Green to tip the ball just over the bar.

Huws had another opportunity, but he was far too casual and drifted wide instead of shooting from close range as Rangers surprisingly appeared suspect under pressure. They were much happier on the attack and Clint Hill’s header from Barton’s 40th minute free kick cannoned back off the crossbar.

Over-elaborate play on the part of Rangers was the reason they were unable to increase their slender lead until the 72nd minute. Jermaine Jenas made progress down the left and stroked a low ball into the middle where the lurking Morrison had ample time to side-foot home his second goal to seal a long overdue Rangers win.

The Daily Mail

Jimmy picked me up at the Target and we had a very smooth journey up the motorway until we came off and approached the city. We had a decent meal and a beer in a hotel conveniently located close to the ground.

Ravel Morrison was superb, with his two goals and his assertive runs upfield. The first goal came after Paul Robinson fouled Kevin Doyle outside the box. He curled the ball into the corner of the net which resulted in wild celebrations on and off the pitch with Joey Barton lifting up Morrison!

He backed up well for his second and sweetly positioned the ball wide of the keeper after being set up by Jermaine Jenas.

There were some nervous defensive moments against a poor home side, but the R’s improved as confidence grew as the game progressed. We had a lot of possession and a number of chances which included a Clint Hill header hitting the crossbar in the first-half.

I have to say that Junior Hoilett was making things difficult for himself and Harry Redknapp really should have replaced him much earlier.

Good support from the travelling R’s fans whereas around St. Andrews it was the quietest I’d ever witnessed. I also noticed that many of their remaining fans did clap Ravel Morrison off when he was substituted in the closing stages.

At the end of the game Harry Redknapp and all the players applauded us with one noticeable exception, Benoit Assou-Ekotto!!!

My thanks to Jimmy for the lift.

Steve Russell