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Coca Cola Championship - Date: 23/8/08
MATCH REVIEW: By J.Haigh
The reds arrived at St. Andrews seeking our first points of the season, but we all know that this was a tough place to get them... and so it proved on the day, unfortunately for Simon Davey's men in red.
It was Barnsley pre-season transfer target Kevin Phillips who scored first rubbing in the fact that he chose Birmingham City over Barnsley F.C. but to be in the frame for such a player shows how far Barnsley Football Club have come in the last few years. Mainly under the stewardship of Davey. Personally, I think that Davey should have as long as it takes to get it right this season, as we will not find a better man at this level of the game.
Again Barnsley FC started the game with good intentions, Brian Howard putting through Devaney on 2 mins, who after creating space for his shot, rattled it against Taylor. Devaney was then pulled down on the edge of the area, Leon stepped up and fired his freekick over the bar.
Birmingham nearly went ahead themselves on 3 mins. through nice work from McFadden, seeing his shot loft over and drop just wide of Steeles post, on 8 mins. another great chance was missed as Phillips' headed just over.
Lone Barnsley striker Macken got behind the defence to glance an header at goal, hitting the post in the process, but was pulled back for offside.
Parnaby had a strong shot at Steele on 13 mins, then the same man crossed in a pin point ball right on the head of Phillips, who finished powerfully from 5 yards.
Barnsley nearly got back into it with Hassells long freekick taking a deflection which wrong footed Maik Taylor in the Birmingham goal, but he managed to get down to cover it. Hassell then provided a good cross which was attacked by Howard and Macken jointly but they were kept out.
Our man of the match Diego Leon was so close to getting the reds back in it on 40 mins. when he hit the bar after getting on a loose ball 30 yards out, letting fly an nearly getting his reward. Leon alongside Howard has been the star player for the reds so far this season, he has started commanding the play with his passing and little flicks. When we get Anderson De Silva back we will have a midfield to be reckoned with.
It was a mistake by Steele that gave City their second goal on a plate, as he misjudged a cross, missed it and it fell for O'Conner on the back post to easily head home.
Odejayi started the second half making an impact with his power and pace (but not finishing ability), Barnsley pressed Birmingham, and there was plenty of chances at both ends, Howard had a couple of good chances the best coming on 58 mins. Ode knocked the ball down for Howard and was through on goal, but the Birmingham City keeper saved his effort well.
City also went close to increasing their lead through McFadden, the reds nearly took a consolation on 86 mins with Howard combining well again with Ode, but the captains shot whistled just wide.
To sum up, no points, bottom of the table, but playing good football at times, things will come right for us...no one has wiped the floor with us in any of these games, the game against Derby County next week down at Oakwell is the game we now need to win to half this losing streak, so get down to Oakwell, and make some noise!
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