Like Tree44Likes

Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story
Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

  1. Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-birmingham-logo.jpg

    Birmingham appoint club legend
    Gonzalo Flores as their new manager

    Birmingham City Football Club have announced that they decided to go down a new direction and have appointed former player Gonzalo Flores as their manager. Gonzalo is a player from many years ago now who is still the greatest player I have owned. He joined on a free transfer at 19 after being released from a Mexican team and became arguably the most decorated player in football history. I can no longer remember the numbers exactly but by the time he retired he had more than 10 Premier League, Champions League and World Player of the Year titles.

    Aims

    As the username suggests I am a big Birmingham City fan so this is not my first save with the club this year. Rather than just doing another save I have set myself a few different targets that I hope to achieve or continue with throughout the save.


    Challenge
    Explanation
    Met
    21st century tactics
    After 15/20 years of sticking with 433 and 4231 tactics I want to attempt to build a 3 at the back tactic
    343 with wing backs
    You never win anything with kids
    Build the academy to the point that at least half of the squad are from the academy
    2017/18 = 0
    2018/19 = 0
    2019/20 = 1
    2020/21 = 3
    Knock them off their perch
    Become the most decorated club in the city
    Competition
    PL
    CL
    FA Cup
    League Cup
    Birmingham
    0
    0
    0
    2
    Villa
    7
    1
    7
    5

    The biggest challenge will definitely be the tactics side as I haven’t really used a 3 at the back tactic before and I never get any enjoyment from plug and play tactics so I will be building them myself. The first challenge I feel will be to not be sacked before Christmas while trying to adapt to a new tactic. If you have any knowledge on 3 at the back tactics then feel free to pass on the advice and hopefully I can incorporate it into my tactics.

    Last edited by bcfc1; 19/08/2018 at 05:02 PM.

  2. As a Birmingham fan I wish you the very best of luck with this. KRO.

  3. Pre-season

    With a grand budget of £0 I will focus more on my tactics and the squad I already have at my disposal. The first thing I focused on was the squad. As a fan of the team and having done a career already on this version with Birmingham, I know the squad well but I have now had to look at which players will fit into a different style of play.

    Harlee Dean

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-harlee-dean_-overview-profile.png

    An absolute rock at the back who could be the heart of the defence for a number of years. Big, strong, smart and technically good, he has all the attributes already to play and at just 25 he could be important as we push for promotion and further.

    Marc Roberts

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-marc-roberts_-overview-profile.png


    Another summer signing at the back is Marc Roberts. Only 26 years old and very siamilar to Harlee Dean. I plan on these two being the two wider CB’s with the elder Morrison in the middle of them. These 2 will be central to all the play and will have to be comfortable on the ball which isn’t always the case for Championship defenders.

    Maxime Colin

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-maxime-colin_-overview-profile.png


    Generally loved by the fans after his first season and I am firmly in that camp. He has provided the club with a 21st century full back. He runs, crosses, attacks and most importantly can put in a shift defensively too. With Harding not really having the potential in game to challenge him, he will have the chance to take the RWB position for himself if he can.

    Maikel Kieftenbeld

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-maikel-kieftenbeld_-overview-profile.png


    Not as universally loved by the fans but I feel he is vital to the team at the moment. What he lacks in technical ability he more than makes up for with work rate and energy which is something that is vital in such a busy and hectic league. With 3 CB’s to control the game, the CM position is more about energy and tackling and there are few better in the league than Kieftenbeld at that.

    Jota

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-jota_-overview-profile.png


    The man who has caused me the most problems is Jota. By far the best player at the club and one of the only attacking players who can play with the ball. My original plan was to play a 343 with wide men but Jota is a No.10 so I have had to create multiple tactics to try and fit him into his natural position more. I am hoping Jota is the key to a promotion push as he is clearly the jewel in the crown at St Andrews.

    My next post will be about the tactics I have set up and then it is onto the season.

  4. Quote Originally Posted by jackstringer19 View Post
    As a Birmingham fan I wish you the very best of luck with this. KRO.

    I don't see many Birmingham fans on here so it is good to see they do exist. I don't see many people playing with Birmingham which I find surprising as we are a good challenge in many ways, with the finances, the big city and being the smaller club in the city.

  5. Tactics

    After a busy pre-season where I tried to fit in as many friendlies as possible to test my tactics I have finally decided to run with the following 3 tactics.

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-birmingham-city_-overview.png

    The first one will probably be my main tactic for most games. It gives me the 3 at the back that I want and allows me to play Jota in his preferred AM role. I am still not sure about the CM roles as I would prefer to not play with 2 BWM but that is the current preferred roles of my CMs. I will have a look and see if I can change this and hopefully have a player who will sit and stay in position to not leave the back 3 too exposed.

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-birmingham-city_-overview-2.png

    This is a tactic to try and control the game more. It gives a DLP in front of the back to provide even more ball control and leaves 2 up top to try and create something. I'm still not convinced by this tactic as it leaves me very weak behind the strikers and leaves them both isolated at times.

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-birmingham-city_-overview-3.png

    My final tactic is something slightly different and will only really be used when our first 2 tactics are really struggling. It lets me play wide men which I am more used to but it can leave the striker very isolated as he doesn't have a partner or a number 10 behind him.

    I expect to be adapting these tactics throughout the season but this is how they will start at least. With pre-season now over it is the start of the season. The club are predicted to finish 16th but I am hoping to better that and finish in at least the top half but it will be down to how well we can adapt to the new tactics.
    TheNotSoSpecialOne likes this.

  6. August


    Ipswich 0
    Birmingham 0


    Not the way I was hoping the season was going to start. We were strong at the back but lacked any skill up top. Hopefully this will come with time



    Yeovil 0
    Birmingham 2 (Gallagher 18, Jota 56Pen)



    A nice solid win in the cup against a lower league side. We controlled the game and they failed to have a single shot on target. Let’s hope we can have that kind of performance against stronger opposition.



    Birmingham 2 (Adams 36, Lowe 86)
    Bristol City 0



    It’s great to get the first win in the league and to get some goals against real competition. It’s also very nice to go 3 games and get 3 clean sheets. Long may it continue.



    Birmingham 2 (Boga 4, Lowe 67)
    Bolton 1 (Le Fondre 34)



    We may have lost the clean sheet, but we still take the 3 points against a team who really troubled us. Le Fondre and Clough up top caused us a lot of problems and I hope to not face too many problems like that during the season.



    Burton 0
    Birmingham 2 (Gardner 11pen, 88pen)



    Both goals from penalties makes it look as though it wasn’t a great game and that would entirely accurate. Burton also play 3 at the back and we both just cancelled each other out. We got the penalties from putting crosses into the box and Gallagher getting dragged down. If he can be enough of a nuisance against 3 CB’s, then I have high hopes throughout the season to get goals from crosses.



    Birmingham 2 (Gardner 25, Boga 78)
    West Brom 1 (Rondon 3)



    An incredible result in the cup especially considering I rested some of the first team as well. I rested Jota which allowed me to play the 343 tactic with wide men and it worked a treat. I’m extremely pleased with this result against a premier league side and it means that the 343 tactic may be used more often, if I can find a place for Jota in it.



    Birmingham 2 (Gardner 49, Kieftenbeld 73)
    Reading 0



    After a boring first half, I had a go at the players and they delivered in the second half. I changed to the 343 wide tactic and it worked incredibly well and we could have scored even more. Jota on the right wing but playing as a AP(s) had so much space it may be something I try again.



    Summary


    An incredible start to the season means we finish August joint top of the table with Middlesbrough. Its very early on but I’m optimistic of meeting my personal target of finishing in the top half of the table.

    A great result against West Brom means we are still in the league cup and we will face Leicester in the 3rd round which will be an even tougher test.


    Player of the month
    Craig Gardner


    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-craig-gardner_-overview-profile.png



    Young player of the month
    Jeremie Boga

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-jeremie-boga_-overview-profile.png



    Dean Wilkes and ninjaskill like this.

  7. September

    Norwich 0

    Birmingham 0

    A pretty boring game ends 0-0. Not much happened in truth and even after changing the tactic and the approach nothing really happened. This was the first game after the international break, so hopefully it was just a bit of rustiness after not playing for 2 weeks.

    Leeds 0
    Birmingham 0

    Another boring game ends 0-0. Leeds away is always a hard game so a draw isn’t the worst result but I hope to see some goals soon as we haven’t even been close in these 2 games.

    Birmingham 1 (Gallagher 90)
    Preston 0

    The first goal of the month brings the first win as we scrap a 1-0 win against Preston who are down at the bottom of the table. This month has still yet to take off but we are still unbeaten so far this year which is a big plus.

    Birmingham 2 (Adams 72, Maghoma 82)
    Leicester 0

    I never thought we had a chance coming into this game and when I saw their starting line up still had Vardy and Mahrez I was even more certain, but somehow we won this game and if anything it should have been by more. Adams missed a penalty when the game was 0-0. In to the next round we go.

    Derby 1 (Ledley 75pen)
    Birmingham 0

    The first loss of the season is a frustrating one as we lose to Derby and to a penalty as well. We weren’t great but neither were Derby and it looked as though the game was drifting to a 0-0 draw until Morrison dragged down Lawrence and gave Ledley the chance to score from the spot.

    Birmingham 2 (Adams 10, Kieftenbeld 12)
    Sheffield Wednesday 0

    It is great to get straight back to winning after the Derby game and it means we maintain our 100% record at home. Both goals had a big fortune of look as Adams latched onto a poor pass back to be 1on1 with the keeper and score, then Kieftenbeld’s shot took a big deflection which helped it in. I am not going to complain though as it means another 3 points on the board.

    Hull 2 (Wilson 43pen, Bowen 51)
    Birmingham (Adams 27, Jota 69)

    This was a really frustrating game as we should have got all 3 points. The penalty came just before half term with a pointless foul and then Bowen’s goal was a 35yd screamer but he shouldn’t have had the space to shoot from there. An away draw at Hull is not the worst result though.

    Summary

    A very busy month finally ends where we played 7 games, with the first game not until the 9th of the month it meant we played those 7 games in just 21 days. Rotation has been the key for the month, especially in the CM roles, and it has shown me the strength of the squad.

    Player of the month
    Jota

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-jota_-overview-profile.png

    Young player of the month
    Che Adams

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-che-adams_-overview-profile.png

    ninjaskill likes this.

  8. October

    Birmingham 3 (Gardner 5pen, Jots 34, Kieftenbeld 58)

    Cardiff 1 (Zohore 62)

    A great start to the month and I have to mention Kieftenbeld’s goal who struck a 25 yard volley directly from a corner right into the top corner.

    Millwall 2 (Elliot t 52, Ferguson 90)

    Birmingham 3 (Adams 7, Jota 10, 62pen)

    We had an electric start which all but won us the game but after the first 10 minutes we were pretty poor. We got two late injuries which meant we finished the game with just 9 men on the pitch so thankfully we could hold onto the 3 points.

    Stoke 0
    Birmingham 1 (Jutkiewicz 88pen)

    I didn’t believe we had much of a chance in this game but when Ndiaye got sent off in the first 10 minutes, we had a more competitive game then I thought and it took a late penalty to get the winner.

    Birmingham 3 (Kietrenbeld 29, Gardner 45, Jota 62)
    Aston Villa 0

    What an incredible result. And it was a great performance too. Everything came together nicely in the most important of games as well. Kieftenbeld’s goal was another long range strike and Gardner’s goal just before half time really killed the game off. This drops Villa out of the play off spaces as well which just adds to the win.

    Birmingham 2 (Gallagher 16, Mepham 73og)

    Brentford 0

    The run keeps going and I am especially pleased with this win as we were missing a few players. Stockdale, Dean, Colin, Gardner and Adams were all missing due to injury or suspension.

    Summary

    5 games, 5 wins and 12 goals scored in those games is incredibly good reading. We currently sit 2nd in the table behind the unstoppable Fulham and 3 points ahead of Wolves. If this continues then I will have to rethink my original target of finishing just in the top half.

    Player of the month
    Jota

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-jota_-overview-profile.png

    Young player of the month
    Jeremie Boga

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-jeremie-boga_-overview-profile.png


  9. November

    Barnsley 0
    Birmingham 1 (Jenkinson 56)

    A solid away win but Barnsley are rooted to the bottom of the table so I was expecting a little bit more from the team.

    Birmingham 4 (Jota 7, Mancienne 23og, Jenkinson 39, Adams 45)
    Nottingham Forest 0

    WTF. An absolutely incredible first half meant we had the game wrapped up in 45 minutes. A win, a clean sheet and plenty of goals makes me a very happy man.

    Middlesbrough 1 (Howson 38)
    Birmingham 2 (Gardner 10pen, 50pen)

    2 penalties won us this game and we struggled to create much else. I have definitely created tactics that are defensively strong but we struggle to make many chances that don’t rely on set pieces.

    Sheffield Utd 0

    Birmingham 1 (Kieftenbeld 84)

    Kieftenbeld delivers another long range strike that secured us the points. He now has 5 goals this season and I believe all of them have been from outside the box.

    Summary

    Another great month puts us top of the table and 4 points ahead of 3rd. It is still pretty early in the season but I am now thinking changing my target from top half to achieving a place off place at least.

    Player of the month
    Maikel Kieftenbeld

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-maikel-kieftenbeld_-overview-profile.png

    Young player of the month
    Cohen Bramall

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-cohen-bramall_-overview-profile.png


  10. December

    Birmingham 1 (Gardner 7)

    Wolves 1 (Afobe 51)

    The month starts with a couple of very tough fixtures and I am pleased to at least not lose to Wolves here. We played well in the first half but the second was all about holding on to the point we had.

    Fulham 1 (Kalas 14)
    Birmingham 1 (Jenkinson 10)

    Another top team, another draw. I am pleased to not lose points to a rival at the top of the table but it is disappointing to concede a goal straight after scoring, especially considering Kalas’ goal was from a set piece as well.

    Birmingham 3 (Gardner 7, Boga 9, Jota 50)
    QPR 0

    A quick start gets us the points here as we were able to get 2 goals in the first 10 minutes. I am happy to keep a clean sheet as well after a few games of being unable to do so.

    Man Utd 4 (Rashford 23, 69. 74, Rojo 45)
    Birmingham 1 (Maghoma 61)

    The cup run finally comes to an end at the hands of Marcus Rashford. His speed was too much for our defence as he broke our line multiple times to get his goals and to create other chances.

    Sunderland 1 (Fletcher 4)
    Birmingham 0

    The unbeaten league run finally comes to an end. We had gone 13 games unbeaten until this game and I was disappointed we weren’t able to break Sunderland down after they took an early lead.

    Birmingham 1 (Adams 22)
    Norwich 1 (Srbeny 90)

    I am gutted to not win this one. We controlled the entire game and I don’t recall a single chance for them other than the goal. Controlling the game is great but we need to turn that into 2/3 goal leads more often to make sure of the result.

    Birmingham 2 (Kieftenbeld 12, Jota 22)

    Leeds 5 (Roberts 2, 9, Sacko 33pen, Cooper 36, Diomande 77)

    WOW. Everything came crashing down in this game. They had an incredible start and even though we got back into it, we really struggled. Kieftenbeld got sent off and then we were just picked off by Leeds.

    Summary

    A terrible month finally comes to the end. We crashed out of the cup to Man Utd which started a run of 4 games without a win. The win against QPR was the only win of the month which is extremely disappointing. I hope fortunes change in the new year.

    Player of the month
    Jota

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-jota_-overview-profile.png

    Young player of the month
    Jeremie Boga

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-jeremie-boga_-overview-profile.png


  11. January

    Reading 3 (Kelly 21pen, Aluko 58, Martin 88)

    Birmingham 4 (Adams 44, Boga 45, Roberts 46, Davis 64)

    An incredible 7 game thriller where we weren’t especially great but we caught them out with 3 goals just before and after half time. It also pushed us back into the top 2 with Fulham.

    Birmingham 0
    Arsenal 3 (Welbeck 1, Ozil 13, Nelson 28)

    We don’t have an FA cup run this year as we crash out in our first round. Arsenal are obviously at a much higher level than us though so there is no shame in losing to them.

    Birmingham 3 (Roberts 43, Keogh 80og, Wisdom 87og)
    Derby 2 (Vydra 50, 84)

    What a final 10 minutes this game had. It was 1-1 until a Keogh og. Vydra then hit a 25 yard equaliser until a 2nd own goal gave us the win.

    Preston 1 (Okotie 88)
    Birmingham 2 (Jota 22, Maghoma 90)

    Another late thriller as it looked as though we had thrown it away before Maghoma was able to break the offside trap and score a very late winner.

    Birmingham 3 (Cutrone 49, Boga 68, Williams 77og)
    Sunderland 0

    Finally a nice simple win and it is the first one of the month. We controlled the game for 90 minutes and once we finally got 1 it was just how many did we want.

    Summary

    Only one loss for the month which was against Arsenal in the cup means we push back into the top 2 and knock Wolves out of it. After Wolves there doesn’t seem to be anyone else close so it is a battle between us 3 (Us, Fulham and Wolves) for the top 2 places.

    Transfers

    There wasn’t much movement but if you have read the goalscorers then you would have noticed one new name. I was able to loan Patrick Cutrone from AC Milan for the rest of the season. While we have been able to get plenty of goals from midfield, I haven’t been able to get a consistent goal scorer up front and I hope Cutrone can change that for at least the rest of the season.

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-patrick-cutrone_-overview-profile.png

    Player of the month
    Carl Jenkinson

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-carl-jenkinson_-overview-profile.png

    Young player of the month
    Jeremie Boga

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-jeremie-boga_-overview-profile.png

    ninjaskill likes this.

  12. February

    Sheffield Weds 0
    Birmingham 0

    A pretty boring game where not much happened. We still lack that consistent goal scorer that I hope Cutrone will be.

    Aston Villa 1 (Kodjia 37)
    Birmingham 2 (Davis 21, Cutrone 87)

    Another derby win in what could be the last one for a while. Villa are doing okay but they currently sit just outside the play offs so I hope to be in a different division to them next season.

    Birmingham 1 (Ferguson 54og)
    Millwall 1 (O’Brien 9)

    AAAAAHHHHHHHH. Quite possibly the most annoyed I have ever been after a game. Millwall are bottom of the table and had only picked up 1 point since the start of December. They got an early goal but we eventually got an equaliser. In the final 10 minutes we missed 2 penalties that could have given us the points but it wasn’t to be.

    Brentford 0
    Birmingham 0

    3 draws out of 4 is proving to be costly as we drop out of the top 2 behind Fulham and Wolves. We I have found we have struggled to break teams down if they have a DM in their formation. We will need to find a way to adapt to this problem.

    Birmingham 3 (Cutrone 4, 34, 87)
    Barnsley 0

    I think that is the loan paid for now. Cutrone put on a show with his goals and, just to show how poor the other strikers have been, he is now our 4th top goalscorer already.

    Summary


    An unbeaten month should be a good thing but 2 wins and 3 draws means we have dropped too many points. As we enter March, we need to have a final push of results to make sure we finish in the top 2 and not in the lottery that is the play offs.

    Player of the month
    Marc Roberts

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-marc-roberts_-overview-profile.png

    Young player of the month
    Patrick Cutrone

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-patrick-cutrone_-overview-profile.png


  13. March


    Notts Forest 0
    Birmingham 2 (Kieftenbeld 59, Jota 81pen)


    A nice solid win to start the month is always nice. Forest are actually really struggling and are just outside the relegation zone which is really surprising.


    Birmingham 3 (Jota 45, Maghoma 85, Traore 90og)
    Middlesbrough 1 (Assombalonga 15)


    They scored an early goal but we controlled a lot of the game and finally got the winning goals we deserved towards the end of the game.


    Cardiff 1 (Bryson 9)
    Birmingham 0


    Our first loss of the calendar year means we fall behind Wolves in the table into 2nd. Fulham seem to be slipping up though and are still a few points behind.


    Birmingham 4 (Cutrone 26, 31, 46, Davis 45)
    Hull 0


    Cutrone again providing a plethora of goals. He is still not the consistent goal scorer I was looking for but when he does score he gets 2 or 3.


    Birmingham 0
    Ipswich 0


    I don’t remember watching a single chance in this game. It was the first game after the international break but most of my players don’t go anywhere so they can’t use that as an excuse.


    Summary


    3 wins leaves us in 2nd place and 2 points behind Wolves. Fulham have had a terrible March and sit a further 4 points behind us even after we dropped points. With Fulhams failings we need just a few more results to go our away and we can start thinking of the riches of Premier League football.


    Player of the month
    Jota

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-jota_-overview-profile.png


    Young player of the month
    Jeremie Boga

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-jeremie-boga_-overview-profile.png


    ninjaskill likes this.

  14. April and May

    With only one game in May I have put that into this post as well.

    Bolton 1 (Le Fondre 83)
    Birmingham 4 (Davis 10, 51, Adams 36, 50)

    A great win against Bolton with a rotated team. This game came just two days after the Ipswich game so I had to rely on the back ups and they definitely delivered.

    Birmingham 3 (Gardner 1, Colin 52, Cutrone 88)
    Burton 1 (Boyce 26)

    This game was much closer than the score line suggests. Kieftenbeld picked up his 3rd red card of the season after 20 minutes which put us is in trouble but we were able to get ahead in the 2nd half and stay there.

    Bristol City 2 (Engvall 38, Diony 84)
    Birmingham 3 (Dean 45, Cutrone 53, 90)

    PREMIER LEAGUE HERE WE COME. We almost threw it away here but this win secures us a top 2 finish and we are heading to the big league. Cutrone saved us with a goal very late in the game.

    Wolves 2 (Afobe 7, Boly 59)
    Birmingham 4 (Jota 37, Cutrone 43, 61, Roberts 83)

    We are almost champions. An incredible result against our rivals means we are 4 points ahead with just 3 games to go. Cutrone scored a brace for the second game in a row and 5 in the last 3. He seems to be carrying us over the line.

    Birmingham 3 (Jota 10, Cutrone 47, Dean 90)
    Sheffield Utd 0

    One step closer to the title with a straight forward win. Cutrone again gets his goal and looks as though he is turning into that consistent goal scorer.

    QPR 3 (Colin 34og, Sylla 40, Smith 85)
    Birmingham 4 (Jota 37, Cutrone 67, Colin 69, Vassell 81)

    CHAMPIONS!!! And what game to do it in. This game had pretty much everything. An own goal, a missed penalty and a red card for them. It also had Cutrone score for the 5th game in a row and also Vassell got his first goal of the season in probably his last game for the club.

    Birmingham 1 (Cutrone 21)

    Fulham 1 (Mitrovic 87)

    I would have liked to end the season with a win but it wasn’t to be as Mitrovic scored a late equaliser. Yet again Cutrone scored and this goal made him our outright top goal scorer with 16 in just half a season.

    Summary

    A great last month or so means we have finished, not only promoted but also as champions of the league. We finished with a mammoth 102 points coming from 30 wins and 12 draws and just 4 losses throughout the season. I will follow this post with a full end of season review.

    Player of the month
    Jota

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-jota_-overview-profile.png

    Young player of the month
    Patrick Cutrone

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-patrick-cutrone_-overview-profile.png


    ninjaskill likes this.

  15. Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-birmingham_city_06_grande.jpg

    End of Season Review

    What an incredible season. I didn’t think we would get promoted in the first season. My original aim was to get a top half finish with a small chance of scraping into the play offs but to win the title with a game spare as well was amazing. I now have the big challenge of trying to change the squad enough to stay up next season. I have been given a £30mil budget to try and do that so there will need to be a lot of scouting to try and find the right deals.

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-sky-bet-championship_-overview-past-positions.png

    In the league we were pretty much always up there and battled with Fulham and Wolves until the very end of the season. Fulham were eventually let down up top as the goals dried up and they ended up scoring almost 20 less goals than us. We finished just 4 points above Wolves so the 4-2 win against them in April was the vital result.

    The FA Cup was a bit of a none starter as we went out straight away to Arsenal who went on to win the Premier League but the Carabao cup is a different story as we managed to reach the final 8 in a run that included beating 3 premier league teams (West Brom, Leicester and Stoke).

    Championship League Table

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-sky-bet-championship_-overview-stages.png

    Squad

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-birmingham-city_-players-players.pngKeep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-birmingham-city_-players-players-2.png

    Player of the season
    Jota

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-jota_-overview-profile.png
    Although Jota was the clear winner, special mention has to go to Gardner who was probably the most consistent player and was able to score 11 goals from CM.

    Young player of the season
    Jeremie Boga


    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-jeremie-boga_-overview-profile.png
    I was tempted to give it to Cutrone but Boga has consistently delivered over the whole season.

    Other Information

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-grant-ndow_-inbox.pngKeep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-grant-ndow_-inbox-2.pngKeep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-grant-ndow_-inbox-3.png
    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-grant-ndow_-inbox-4.pngKeep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-grant-ndow_-inbox-5.png

    ninjaskill likes this.

  16. Pre-season

    It has been an incredibly busy pre-season as we signed 11 players and let 5 go. It was always going to be a summer of change as we plan to stay in the league but there were a couple of signings that weren’t planned for. I’m going to run through the signings by position as I can’t remember the order that I bought them in.

    Goalkeepers

    We started the summer with Stockdale and Kuszczak as our goalkeepers and now neither of them are at the club. Kuszczak left to go back to Poland and join Legia Warsaw for £500k but the big deal was for Stockdale. Crystal Palace were in need of a keeper and came in with an incredible offer that starts at £6mil and could end up earning me almost £10mil for a 32 year old keeper that I was planning to replace all summer anyway. To replace them we signed Sam Johnstone on a free transfer as he was released from Man Utd but the real deal was for Nick Pope who was transfer listed for just £3.3mil. Pope will be the starting keeper but Johnstone is of a good enough quality to come in if needed.

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-nick-pope_-overview-profile.pngKeep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-sam-johnstone_-overview-profile.png

    Centre backs

    We were always a centre back or two short last season so this is the area that I felt we needed to spend a lot of the budget. I brought in two defenders for a combined fee of £23mil. Ben Gibson signed for £12mil and Alfie Mawson for £11mil. They are both good, young, English centre backs who go straight into the back line and it will be a choice between Roberts and Dean to join them.

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-alfie-mawson_-overview-profile.pngKeep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-ben-gibson_-overview-profile.png

    Wing backs

    I have signed two new wing backs to hopefully provide more natural width to the team. I signed Dasilva from Chelsea for just £1.8mil for the left side and he will battle with Kieta who returns from his loan to Serie A with Bologna. For the right side, I was able to loan Achraf from Real Madrid for the season. I had originally wanted to sign Achraf but I ran out of money so I am glad to get him in on loan at least and hopefully I can make the move permanent next summer.

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-jay-dasilva_-overview-profile.pngKeep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-achraf_-overview-profile.png

    Central midfield

    Not too much work was really needed here so I haven’t spent any money on this position. I have signed Loftus-cheek on loan for the season and I was able to bring in Marcos Llorente on a free transfer. There will need to be a lot of rotation in midfield so I decided to keep Gardner, Kieftenbeld and Davis at the club and have 5 midfielders for just 2 positions.

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-ruben-loftus-cheek_-overview-profile.pngKeep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-marcos-llorente_-overview-profile.png

    Forwards

    The first move I made in the whole summer was to extend Cutrone’s loan for this season. He had started to turn into a consistent goal scorer and, rather than taking a risk on a new signing, I decided to bring Cutrone back and he will lead the line again. I also signed Sheyi Ojo on loan for the season. I had originally wanted to bring Boga back as well but he rejected us in order to go to RBL which I can’t criticize as they will be playing Champions League football next season.

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-sheyi-ojo_-overview-profile.png

    Others

    I also signed two youngsters from the lower leagues of England. I signed Ryan Ledson from Oxford for £500k and as part of the deal I agreed for him to spend the season back at Oxford. He doesn’t have the greatest physical stats but his mental and technical stats make up for that and he is still only 21 so he has some room to improve. I also signed Nuno Marques from Port Vale for just £100k. My scouts found him and he looks like an absolute gem. I just hope he progresses well over the next couple of years to eventually become our starting striker. I don’t know how Port Vale got a young Portuguese striker to come through their youth system though.

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-nuno-marques_-overview-profile.pngKeep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-ryan-ledson_-overview-profile.png

    Squad

    I am hoping to now involve more information about the squad and add the starting line-up for each game to every post. I usually operate on a 22 man squad and have 2 players for every position, so these are my two squads for next season.

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-birmingham-city_-overview.pngKeep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-birmingham-city_-overview-2.png



    ninjaskill likes this.

  17. August

    Tottenham 1 (Kane 45)
    Birmingham 2 (Llorente 23, Cutrone 59)

    Pope, Roberts (Dean), Mawson, Gibson, Achraf, Llorente, Loftus-Cheek, Keita, Jota*, Cutrone, Ojo

    What a start to the league. I didn’t think we had any chance coming into this game but we were able to get the first goal and from their it was a pretty even game and Cutrone was able to get the winner in the second half.

    Birmingham 3 (Cutrone 45, 67, 90)
    Liverpool 0

    Pope, Roberts (Dean), Mawson, Gibson, Achraf, Kieftenbeld, Loftus-Cheek (Gardner), Dasilva, Jota, Cutrone*, Maghoma (Stewart)

    What a start to the season this is. When I saw the first two fixtures were Tottenham and Liverpool, I was certain we would have 0 points but to get two wins is incredible. Cutrone was clearly able to finish his chances but I have to mention Achraf who assisted two of them and was great up the right wing.

    Walsall 0

    Birmingham 2 (Maghoma 8, Adams 22)


    Johnstone, Roberts, Morrison, Grounds, Colin, Llorente, Davis, Keita*, Stewart, Adams, Maghoma (Fabbrini)

    A solid win by the back-up team as we progress to the next round of the cup. There are still plenty of positions that people are fighting for and Keita with his man of the match performance here is looking to challenge Dasilva for the LWB position.

    Summary

    I know better than to get too optimistic but this has been a great start to the season. I was worried about whether we would be able to score goals in this league but so far we have 5 in 2 premier league games. Let’s just hope they don’t dry up over the season.

    Player of the month
    Jota

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-jota_-overview-profile.png

    Young player of the month
    Patrick Cutrone

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-patrick-cutrone_-overview-profile.png

    League Table

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-english-premier-division_-overview-stages.png



  18. September

    Southampton 1 (Austin 50)
    Birmingham 1 (Loftus-Cheek 11)

    Pope, Dean, Mawson, Gibson, Achraf, Kieftenbeld (Gardner), Loftus-Cheek*, Dasilva (Keita), Jota, Cutrone (Adams), Ojo

    A very even game where a draw was the fairest outcome. Cutrone had chances to win it for us but he just couldn’t his goal in this game.

    Birmingham 1 (Jota 55)
    Arsenal 3 (Luan 46, Lacazette 66, Aubameyang 68)

    Pope, Dean, Mawson, Gibson, Colin, Kieftenbeld (Llorente), Loftus-Cheek, Dasilva, Jota, Cutrone (Adams), Ojo

    2 goals in 2 minutes cost us this game but moments like that can always happen when you play a team of Arsenal’s quality. The speed of Lozano, Luan, Lacazette and Aubameyang was too much for our defence they eventually just picked us off.

    West ham 1 (Arnautovic 40)
    Birmingham 6 (Cutrone 9, Loftus-Cheek 45, Ojo 45, Kieftenbeld 48, Jota 53pen, 57)

    Pope, Dean, Mawson, Gibson, Achraf, Kieftenbeld, Loftus-Cheek, Keita, Jota*, Cutrone, Ojo

    You are reading that right. We scored 6 against West Ham away from home. If you were to just look at the stats then you would consider the game to be an even one but every time we attacked we just scored.

    Brighton 1 (Baldock 46pen)
    Birmingham 0

    Johnstone, Roberts, Mawson, Grounds, Colin, Llorente, Gardner, Dasilva (Keita), Stewart (Fabbrini*), Adams (Vassell), Maghoma

    The cup run is over early this year. Brighton got relegated last season, so they are back in the championship but they had enough to stop us scoring and to get the win via a penalty. We had plenty of chances but just couldn’t get a goal. The back-up team is still not as good as I need it to be.

    Birmingham 2 (Cutrone 3, Jota 55pen)
    Stoke 1 (Petagna 71)

    Pope, Dean, Mawson (Roberts), Gibson, Achraf, Kieftenbeld, Loftus-Cheek, Keita, Jota* (Stewart), Cutrone, Ojo (Adams)

    This was a game flooded with mistakes. Cutrone’s goal came from a poor pass back. Jota scored a penalty after a pointless foul right on the corner of the box. Petagna’s goal was again from a poor pass back and we even missed another penalty in injury time after Adam’s was fouled in the box.

    Summary

    7 points from 12 is more than acceptable with the only loss in the league coming against last seasons champions Arsenal. The West Ham win was the clear highlight but going out of the cup so early is disappointing.

    Player of the month
    Jota

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-jota_-overview-profile.png

    Young player of the month
    Ruben Loftus-Cheek

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-ruben-loftus-cheek_-overview-profile.png

    League Table

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-english-premier-division_-overview-stages.png




  19. October

    Birmingham 6 (Jota 21, Cuttrone 23, 53, 74, Loftus-Cheek 37, Ojo 76)
    Man City 1 (Icardi 53)

    Pope, Dean, Mawson, Gibson, Achraf, Kieftenbeld (Davis), Loftus-Cheek, Keita (Dasilva), Jota (Stewart), Cutrone*, Ojo

    What a ridiculous result, It was helped by the fact that Man City didn’t take us seriously as they had Aguero, De Bruyne, Jesus, Laporte and Walker all on the bench but to still score 6 against a Guardiola team is amazing.

    Man Utd 1 (Martial 2)
    Birmingham 1 (Dean 90)

    Pope, Dean, Mawson*, Gibson, Achraf, Kieftenbeld (Llorente), Loftus-Cheek (Gardner), Keita, Jota (Stewart), Cutrone, Ojo

    When they scored so early on I was worried about the game becoming embarrassing but we held on for a lot of the game and then the last 10 minutes or so was all us and Dean finally headed in an equaliser in extra time.

    Birmingham 1 (Gardner 19)
    Burnley 0

    Pope, Dean Mawson (Roberts), Gibson*, Achraf, Kieftenbeld (Llorente), Gardner, Keita (Dasilva), Jota, Cutrone, Ojo

    A pretty boring game really. We got an early goal and then just controlled the game. We had 70% possession and Burnley didn’t have a single shot on target.

    Summary

    A shorter month due to an international break but the results were great. Of course the 6-1 win against Man City was the highlight and it is the second game already that we have won by that score line.

    Player of the month
    Jota


    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-jota_-overview-profile.png

    Young player of the month
    Patrick Cutrone

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-patrick-cutrone_-overview-profile.png


    League Table

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-english-premier-division_-overview-stages.png


    ninjaskill likes this.

  20. November

    Everton 2 (Mirallas 39, Keane 44)
    Birmingham 0

    Pope, Dean (Roberts), Mawson, Gibson, Achraf, Kieftenbeld, Loftus-Cheek, Keita, Jota, Cutrone, Ojo (Maghoma)

    A poor end to the first half means we lose to Everton away from home. We weren’t at the races really and struggled for the whole game.

    Birmingham 4 (Cutrone 25, 43, Jota 45, 77)
    Hull 0

    Pope, Dean, Mawson, Gibson, Achraf, Kiefenbeld, Loftus-Cheek (Gardner), Keita (Dasilva), Jota*, Cutrone, Ojo

    Hull are really struggling in the league and we capitalised on that here. We had 34 shots in the game but only 8 on target. That has been a common theme to our games as we struggle to get shots on target.

    Crystal Palace 2 (Townsend 24, 71)

    Birmingham 0

    Pope, Dean, Mawson, Gibson, Colin, Kieftenbeld, Gardner, Keita, Jota, Cutrone, Ojo

    Another away game where we couldn’t really get going. Palace aren’t doing great in the league but we couldn’t stop Benteke who was able to bully our defenders and then lay it off to Zaha and Townsend to create loads of problems for us.

    Summary

    Another short month due to international games means we only play 3 games and only win one of them. There is no shame in losing to Everton but the Crystal Palace game was disappointing. They are in the bottom 3 but were able to comfortably beat us.

    Player of the month
    Alfie Mawson

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-alfie-mawson_-overview-profile.png

    Young player of the month
    Achraf

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-achraf_-overview-profile.png

    League Table

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-english-premier-division_-overview-stages.png


  21. December

    Birmingham 4 (Cutrone 10, 32, 72, Mawson 50)
    Bounemouth 1 (Cook 88)

    Pope, Dean, Mawson Gibson (Morrison), Achraf, Llorente, Gardner (Davis), Keita, Jota, Cutrone*, Ojo (Dasilva)

    Disappointed to not get a clean sheet here especially as their goal only came after Keita was sent straight off and that red card got rescinded after the game.

    Newcastle 3 (Long 22, Shelvey 34, Costinha 36)

    Birmingham 3 (Cutrone 30, 54, Ojo 83)

    Pope, Dean, Mawson, Gibson, Achraf, Llorente (Kieftenbeld), Loftus-Cheek (Gardner), Keita (Dasilva), Jota*, Cutrone, Ojo

    We didn’t deserve anything from this game as we struggled to really get going. Thankfully we keep scoring goals and a late equaliser from Ojo got us a point at least.

    Birmingham 6 (Loftus-Cheek 2, Cutrone 22, 43, 89pen, Jota 45, Adams 66)
    Watford 4 (Doucoure 4, 79, Richarlison 24, Deeney 88)

    Pope, Dean, Mawson, Gibson, Achraf (Dasilva), Kieftenbeld (Llorente), Loftus-Cheek, Keita, Jota, Cutrone*, Ojo (Adams)

    Another game with a whole load of goals. Cutrone is absolutely unstoppable at the moment and this makes it 8 goals in the 3 games so far this month for him. He was made favourite for European Golden Boy after this game and after his form this season he must be close for it.

    Birmingham 2 (Jota 33pen, Cutrone 54)
    Wolves 0

    Pope, Dean, Mawson (Roberts), Gibson*, Davis, Kieftenbeld, Loftus-Cheek (Gardner), Keita (Dasilva), Jota, Cutrone, Adams

    Another game another Cutrone goal. Wolves have struggled recently and we took advantage of that in this game. Wolves failed to have a shot on target in the whole game.

    Leicester 1 (Kovalenko 82pen)

    Birmingham 0

    Pope, Dean, Roberts, Gibson, Achraf, Kieftenbeld, Loftus-Cheek (Gardner), Keita, Jota, Cutrone (Adams), Ojo (Maghoma)

    There seemed to be some tiredness in the attacking players as none of them were really on it today. This was the boxing day match so we are right in the middle of the busy period so we may need to rotate more in the next couple of games.

    Birmingham 2 (Cutrone 70, 90)

    West Brom 0

    Pope, Dean (Maghoma), Mawson, Gibson, Achraf, Kieftenbeld, Loftus-Cheek, Keita, Jota*, Cutrone, Ojo (Llorente)

    An early sending off for Kieftenbeld made this game very weird tactically. I originally took Ojo off and put Llorente into midfield while playing Jota behind Cutrone. That wasn’t working so I took off Dean and brought on Maghoma so I had two wide men again and that was much more successful.

    Summary

    There were 6 games this month which involved 26 goals altogether. We are definitely happy in front of goal but defensively we are still struggling. The defense is where I spent almost my entire transfer budget on as well so I am not too sure how to fix the problem at the moment except to focus training on our defensive play.

    Player of the month
    Jota

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-jota_-overview-profile.png

    Young player of the month
    Patrick Cutrone

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-patrick-cutrone_-overview-profile.png

    League Table

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-english-premier-division_-overview-stages.png


  22. January

    Birmingham 2 (Ojo 26, Jota 72)
    Tottenham 2 (Kane 6pen, Clyne 87)

    Pope, Dean, Mawson (Roberts), Gibson, Achraf, Llorente, Loftus-Cheek (Gardner), Keita, Jota, Cutrone (Adams), Ojo*

    We were definitely second best in this game but again we seem able to score goals. I will be disappointed to lose both Ojo and Cutrone from my front 3 as they are both on loan and it will be unlikely I can afford to buy them.

    Liverpool 0
    Birmingham 3 (Robertson 45og, Jota 64, Adams 70)

    Pope, Dean, Mawson, Gibson, Achraf, Llorente (Davis), Loftus-Cheek (Gardner), Keita (Dasilva), Jota*, Cutrone, Adams

    Back to winning ways here against a Liverpool side who are really struggling. After this result, Klopp was finally sacked by the club. I was surprised to be offered an interview for the job as I didn’t imagine my reputation was high enough yet but it is promising.

    Preston 1 (Maguire 27)

    Birmingham 0

    Johnstone, Roberts, Morrison, Grounds, Colin, Davis, Gardner, Dasilva, Vassell, Adams, Maghoma

    I decided to give the back-ups a run out here and they disappointed massively. Not only with the result but the fact that it really should have been 3 or 4 for Preston. I hope to use next summer as a chance to improve the depth of the squad as a lot of these players are not good enough to play for a premier league team.

    Chelsea 4 (Hazard 42, 48, Willian 64, Morata 81)
    Birmingham 1 (Cutrone 12)

    Pope, Dean, Mawson, Gibson, Achraf, Kieftenbeld, Gardner, Keita, Jota, Cutrone, Ojo

    Hazard gave us the run around here. Chelsea have been the best team in the league this year and we couldn’t do much to stop them. Cutrone gave us the lead but that was our only shot on target in whole game. These kind of results were always going to happen during the season so I am not too disappointed with this one.

    Birmingham 5 (Loftus-Cheek 12, 21, 27, Jota 32, 58)
    Southampton 1 (Stephens 83)

    Pope, Dean, Mawson, Gibson, Achraf, Kieftenbeld (Llorente), Loftus-Cheek*, Keita (Dasilva), Jota (Adams), Cutrone, Ojo

    An incredible performance from Loftus-Cheek gives us the 3 points here. All 3 of his goals were very similar with a cross being cut back to him on the edge of the box and he hit them low and hard every time. He has been key to a lot of our performances and if he can add a few more goals to his game then I will try and sign him from Chelsea.

    Arsenal 4 (Lacazette 27, 28, Aubameyang 44, Elneny 66)

    Birmingham 1 (Adams 89)

    Pope, Dean, Mawson, Gibson, Achraf (Colin), Kieftenbeld, Loftus-Cheek, Keita, Jota (Adams), Cutrone, Ojo (Llorente)

    Another top team put us in our place. It was the speed up top that beat us and kept on breaking our high line. I will need to play a deeper line against the teams that play with high speed up top.

    Birmingham 3 (Cutrone 20, 51, Ojo 64)

    West Ham 0

    Pope, Roberts, Mawson, Gibson, Achraf, Kieftenbeld, Loftus-Cheek (Gardner), Keita, Jota (Maghoma), Cutrone*, Ojo

    A great result brings the month to the end. It also brought a slight knock to Jota but I hope he will be back by the next game as a lot of our play runs through him.

    Summary

    I am happy with 10 points from 18, especially considering this month had games against Tottenham, Liverpool, Chelsea and Arsenal. Losing to Preston was the obvious low point as it means we won’t be having any cup run this year. I am hoping to put together a good cup run next season, once I am able to improve the depth of the squad.

    Transfers

    I made one signing but they failed to get a work permit under the new system so I have immediately loaned them out for the rest of the season.

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-luka-adzic_-overview-profile.png

    Luka Adzic looks like a great left winger and will hopefully replace Ojo once he returns to Liverpool. Obviously that depends on whether he can get a work permit. Even if he isn’t able to get a work permit, he should bring in a nice profit as he was signed for just £500k and he is already worth £6.5mil.

    Player of the month
    Jota

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-jota_-overview-profile.png

    Young player of the month
    Sheyi Ojo

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-sheyi-ojo_-overview-profile.png

    League Table

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-english-premier-division_-overview-stages.png


  23. February

    Stoke 0
    Birmingham 0

    Pope, Dean, Mawson, Gibson, Achraf, Kieftenbeld, Loftus-Cheek, Keita, Jota*, Cutrone, Ojo

    Possibly the most boring game I have watched this season and I believe it is our first 0-0 of the season. The game flew by before I even knew what happened but a point away from home is always helpful.

    Man City 3 (Sane 1, 29, De Bruyne 33)
    Birmingham 2 (Ojo 15, Kieftenbeld 90)

    Pope, Roberts, Mawson, Gibson, Achraf, Llorente, Loftus-Cheek (Kieftenbeld), Keita, Jota, Cutrone, Ojo

    To only lose by one against a team with their spending power is nothing be ashamed of but it was disappointing to concede 3 goals in the first 30 minutes or so of the game. We controlled the rest of the game but there is no point in controlling a game when you are already 2 behind.

    Birmingham 2 (Cutrone 20, 89)
    Man Utd 1 (Martial 86)

    Pope, Dean, Mawson, Gibson, Achraf, Llorente, Loftus-Cheek (Gardner), Keita, Jota (Adams), Cutrone*, Ojo

    A great result where I thought we had thrown it away before winning it again. Man Utd were definitely weakened as they had injuries to Lukaku, Sanchez, Rashford and Pogba as well as a couple of other squad players.

    Summary

    February is always a short month but it was made shorter by one of the weekends being focused on FA Cup games that we are out of. I still have a couple of months to go and 11 games to play in the league but whatever happens I have been impressed with the tactic. I thought 3 at the back tactics would be too defensive but it has been the complete opposite and we are currently the second top goal scorers in the league.

    Player of the month
    Alfie Mawson

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-alfie-mawson_-overview-profile.png

    Young player of the month
    Sheyi Ojo

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-sheyi-ojo_-overview-profile.png

    League Table

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-english-premier-division_-overview-stages.png


    ninjaskill likes this.

  24. March

    Burnley 0

    Birmingham 1 (Ojo 74)

    Pope, Dean, Mawson (Roberts), Gibson, Achraf, Kieftenbeld, Loftus-Cheek, Keita, Jota (Adams), Cutrone, Ojo

    Not a spectacular win but 3 points none the less. Burnley are struggling down at the bottom of the table so I thought it would be easier but they are fighting for safety so they were really hard to break down.

    Birmingham 2 (Achraf 42, Loftus-Cheek 90)
    Everton 1 (Tosun 21)

    Pope, Dean, Mawson, Gibson, Achraf, Kieftenbeld (Llorente), Loftus-Cheek, Keita, Jota, Cutrone (Marques), Ojo

    Really pleased with this win as it means we almost certainly going to finish above Everton now. Loftus-Cheek got us the late winner but I also gave a club debut to youngster Marques. He was only on the bench as Adams was injured and Cutrone was playing poorly so I brought him on and he played perfectly fine. I have high hopes for him in the future.

    Hull 1 (Bowen 90)
    Birmingham 2 (Ojo 68, Cutrone 84)

    Pope, Dean, Mawson, Gibson (Roberts), Achraf (Colin), Kieftenbeld, Loftus-Cheek, Keita, Jota (Adams), Cutrone, Ojo

    Hull are rock bottom of the league and probably not far from relegation already but it still took us a while to break them down. Their goal came very late on but it was annoying to lose a clean sheet as we haven’t got too many of those over the season.

    Birmingham 3 (Jota 47pen, Kieftenbeld 57, Dean 72)

    Crystal Palace 0

    Pope, Dean*, Mawson, Gibson, Colin, Kieftenbeld, Loftus-Cheek (Llorente), Kieta, Jota (Adams), Cutrone, Ojo

    A solid win against a team that are struggling but have some real quality in their team. It is also a clean sheet which have been too rare this season.

    Summary

    A solid month puts us in a great position for European football. We still have a few hard games coming up but the gap to Southampton and below is big enough that I feel confident of achieving Europa League football.

    Player of the month
    Maikel Kieftenbeld

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-maikel-kieftenbeld_-overview-profile.png

    Young player of the month
    Sheyi Ojo

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-sheyi-ojo_-overview-profile.png

    League Table

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-english-premier-division_-overview-stages.png


  25. April

    Bournemouth 2 (Kachunga 21, Gradell 36)
    Birmingham 4 (Jota 1, 51, Cutrone 6, Castagne 23og)

    Pope, Dean, Mawson, Gibson, Achraf, Llorente, Loftus-Cheek, Keita, Jota*, Cutrone (Adams), Ojo

    A solid win here with Jota the star of the show. He has been absolutely incredible for me for 2 seasons now and as the only one of the front 3 that is actually my player, I hope that his form continues.

    Birmingham 0
    Newcastle 0

    Pope, Dean, Mawson, Gibson, Achraf (Colin), Llorente, Loftus-Cheek, Keita, Jota, Cutrone, Ojo (Adams)

    Not as boring as the score line suggests as there were plenty of chances but neither team could finish. Mitrovic was incredible up top for them, to the point that I am thinking about him replacing Cutrone in the summer if I can get the right deal.

    Watford 2 (Deeney 53, Gray 90)

    Birmingham 4 (Cutrone, 7, 35, 80, Jota 90)

    Pope, Dean, Mawson, Gibson (Roberts), Achraf (Colin), Llorente, Loftus-Cheek (Gardner), Keita, Jota, Cutrone*, Ojo

    A very nice win here with Cutrone once again showing off his finishing skills. He is in a tight battle with Harry Kane for top goal scorer this season and this hat trick has now put him a couple of goals ahead.

    Birmingham 0
    Chelsea 4 (Mandzukic 42, 72, Christiansen 45, Luiz 81)

    Pope, Dean, Mawson, Gibson, Colin, Llorente, Gardner, Keita, Jota, Cutrone, Ojo

    We were always going to struggle in this game as Chelsea are champions elect and we are struggling with a few injuries and suspensions (Achraf, Kieftenbeld and Loftus-Cheek from the usual 11). They caught us with 2 goals just before half time and then they just picked us off after that.

    Summary

    It may not have been the perfect month in terms of results but it has been a great month for us. We have picked up enough points so that Europa League is almost guaranteed. It would take an almighty collapse for us not to get 5th place now. Really the battle is between us and Man Utd for 4th and 5th and I am happy to take either position. While the idea of sneaking into the Champions League sounds amazing, we do not have the squad anywhere near capable of even competing at that level and we would be the whipping boys of whatever group we were in.

    Player of the month
    Jota

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-jota_-overview-profile.png

    Young player of the month
    Patrick Cutrone

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-patrick-cutrone_-overview-profile.png

    League Table

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-english-premier-division_-overview-stages.png

    ninjaskill likes this.

  26. May

    West Brom 1 (Mbemba 69)
    Birmingham 3 (Dean 44, Gibson 53, Colin 71)

    Pope, Dean, Mawson, Gibson, Colin, Llorente, Loftus-Cheek, Keita (Dasilva), Jota, Cutrone, Ojo (Adams)

    This win confirms that we will finish at least 5th. It has been an incredible season and I never thought we would be anywhere near the top of the table. It is going to be a massive challenge to try and get this kind of position again next season with the added games of Europa League football.

    Birmingham 1 (Jota 3)
    Leicester 0

    Pope, Dean, Mawson, Gibson*, Colin, Llorente, Loftus-Cheek (Gardner), Keita (Dasilva), Jota, Cutrone, Ojo

    An early goal gave us the points here but Man Utd won as well so we are still in 5th position. Gibson has been the unsung hero the season so it is great for him to get his first goal against West Brom and follow that up with a Motm performance here.

    Wolves 3 (Afobe 7, 25, Oliviera 40)
    Birmingham 0

    Pope, Dean, Mawson, Gibson, Colin, Kieftenbeld, Loftus-Cheek, Kieta, Jota, Cutrone, Ojo
    A really disappointing way to end the season here as we were dominated by Wolves. Afobe was our big problem as he played the lone striker role perfectly here. The most frustrating thing was that Man Utd also lost so just a point here would have been enough to get 4th place.

    Summary

    It is finally the end of a great season. I couldn’t imagine at the start that we would end up finishing the season by qualifying for Europe but that is what has happened. The Wolves result was a disappointing way to end the season but that won’t lower the enjoyment of the season. I will do a full end of season review in my next post.

    Player of the month
    Ben Gibson

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-ben-gibson_-overview-profile.png

    Young player of the month
    Sheyi Ojo

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-sheyi-ojo_-overview-profile.png

    League Table

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-english-premier-division_-overview-stages.png


  27. End of season review

    It has been an amazing first season in the premier league. We finished 5th and it could have been even better if we could have got a result in the final games against Wolves. I now have to try and improve the squad to do this again while attempting to go as far as we can in Europe and have a better run in the domestic cups. We have been given a massive budget of £90mil to do this so expect to see some changes at the club. I always attempt to bring in English players if I can but if I can find the right deal then I have no problem bringing in foreign players. This will be harder now that Brexit has happened in game though.

    Premier League Table

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-english-premier-division_-overview-stages.png

    Squad

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-birmingham-city_-players-players.pngKeep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-birmingham-city_-players-players-2.png

    Player of the season
    Jota

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-jota_-overview-profile.png

    It wasn’t really a hard decision as Jota once again is the player of the season. He got 18 goals and 16 assists in the league which put him second in both categories behind Cutrone and Ojo respectively.

    Young player of the season
    Patrick Cutrone


    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-patrick-cutrone_-overview-profile.png

    He just missed out on winning this last season, even though he only joined in January, but he has done enough this season to win it. Ojo was close to winning this with 8 goals and 17 assists but Cutrone’s 32 goals were what took us up the table. I will find it very hard to replace him next season.

    Awards

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-grant-ndow_-inbox.pngKeep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-grant-ndow_-inbox-2.pngKeep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-grant-ndow_-inbox-3.pngKeep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-grant-ndow_-inbox-4.png

    Other Information

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-grant-ndow_-inbox-5.pngKeep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-grant-ndow_-inbox-6.pngKeep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-grant-ndow_-inbox-7.png


    ninjaskill and Rushton like this.

  28. Pre-Season

    It has been a hectic pre-season as I have tried to improve almost every area of the team. There have been changes to the starting team, the back-up team and I have signed some youngsters for the future.

    Players out


    There have been some big transfers out of the club so I will talk about those first of all. The first deal was the biggest as we sold Marcos Llorente to Leicester for £13.5mil. He was a good player but just didn’t fit into our system. I knew I was going to buy a midfielder or two so I happy to get him off of the books and to make a big profit on him as he was a free transfer last summer.

    We then sold Che Adams for £10mil. Cheick Keita for £6.5mil and David Davis for £7.5mil. All three were going to be back-up players at best and to get such good money for them could not be ignored. Adams and Keita were around the first team last season but some of the signings I made pushed them down the order.

    I also sold Jonathan Grounds, Michael Morrison and Jacques Maghoma for a combined total of just over £1mil to again make more space in the squad for other signings. And finally I loaned out a load of youngsters with the hope that the first team experience will be good for them.

    Players in

    I will go through my signings by position again as it splits them up quite well. There have been no changes in goal as Pope and Johnstone are still my choice of keepers, although I do have a couple coming through the youth system so I may look to move Johnstone off in the future to make space for them.

    Centre backs

    Last summer was really dedicated to improving this area, so this summer was more about just fine tuning it. I made 2 signings they have improved the choice of CB’s without breaking the bank. Chris Smalling was the first one to join on a free transfer after he was released from Man Utd. I was looking at signing Tarkowski after Burnley got relegated but they were asking for over £20mil and then when I saw Smalling on a free transfer I had to go for him. I also signed Rob Holding from Arsenal for £7.5mil. He looks to be a very good young English CB and I hope he can develop to be a starting player for me.

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-chris-smalling_-overview-profile.pngKeep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-rob-holding_-overview-profile.png


    Wing Backs

    With Achraf going back to Real Madrid and Keita leaving I had to replace both sides. I signed Ryan Sessegnon from Fulham to play the LWB role for £12mil. He was the most expensive signing of the window but I think he is worth it as he has the potential to be even better than he already is and to play that role for me for 10-15 years as he is still on 19. I also signed Davide Calabria from AC Milan for £10mil. I was really struggling to find anyone for RWB and then when I saw Calabria I moved quickly to make it happen. He isn’t the greatest player but he should do a good job there while I try and find an improvement.

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-ryan-sessegnon_-overview-profile.pngKeep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-davide-calabria_-overview-profile.png

    Central Midfield

    This was the position I thought I would end up spending a lot of money on as I wanted major improvements but actually I did it quite cheaply. I brought Loftus-Cheek back on loan again and then signed 2 more midfielders. Maroune Fellaini made it two former Man Utd players to join for free and then I signed Jefferson Lerma from Levante for just £4.3mil. I spent a lot of the summer looking at Tanguy Ndombele but he wasn’t going to be cheap and eventually I felt that the £28mil it was going to cost wasn’t worth it and so I got both of these guys instead.

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-jefferson-lerma_-overview-profile.pngKeep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-marouane-fellaini_-overview-profile.png

    Wingers

    Firstly Luka Adzic has got a work permit so he has come straight into the squad. I also signed Mohammed Elyounoussi for £11mil and loaned Patrick Roberts for the season from Man City. Elyounoussi was my very last signing of the summer and will battle with Adzic for the LW role. I wanted a young English player to play back-up to Jota and Roberts fit that role perfectly. He is also out of contract at the end of the season so unless Man City give him a new contract I hope to make his move permanent as well.

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-mohammed-elyounoussi_-overview-profile.pngKeep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-patrick-roberts_-overview-profile.png

    Strikers

    With Cutrone leaving and Adams being sold I had to make big changes up top. I firstly promoted youngster Nuno Marques to the squad to hopefully get him some game time but I also signed two strikers. I signed Lincoln for £7.5mil and Ashley Barnes for £8mil. Lincoln will be the main starter but I wanted an experienced striker to be his back-up and it was between Barnes, Callum Wilson and Troy Deeney. Their clubs wanted more than £20mil for Wilson and Deeney so it became an easy choice to bring in Barnes as the 2nd choice striker.

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-ashley-barnes_-overview-profile.pngKeep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-lincoln_-overview-profile.png

    Youngsters

    I also signed a load of youngsters and immediately sent them out on loan. Our youth facilities are still not where they need to be so they will be better off at another club and getting game time. The most expensive out of the lot was Zambrano who cost £2mil, with Perpetuo costing £700k and the 3rd most expensive costing less than £100k. I hope to see some of these develop to be good enough for the first team squad next season.

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-c%C3%A9sar-zambrano_-overview-profile.pngKeep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-enzo-cabrera_-overview-profile.pngKeep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-fran-garc%C3%ADa_-overview-profile.pngKeep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-guti_-overview-profile.pngKeep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-landry-kouassi_-overview-profile.pngKeep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-rasmus-krogdahl_-overview-profile.pngKeep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-sandro-perp%C3%A9tuo_-overview-profile.png

    Squad

    These are my two squads at the start of the season. There have been a lot of changes so I am still unsure on who my best starting 11 is so there may be changes in the first month of two but I do like to have a settled team so I hope to get that sorted early on.

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-birmingham-city_-overview.pngKeep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-birmingham-city_-overview-2.png



    1magine likes this.

  29. What a rapid amount of success you've made here mate! Great going my friend. That tactic is interesting one as well, did you make it up yourself? It's clearly doing wonders!!
    bcfc1 likes this.

  30. August

    Man City 1 (Sane 6)

    Birmingham 2 (Adzic 21, 82)

    Pope, Smalling, Holding, Gibson, Colin, Fellaini (Loftus-Cheek), Lerma, Dasilva, Jota, Lincoln (Barnes), Adzic*

    A great start to the season against Allegri’s Man City that included Icardi, Fekir, Kovacic, Dier, De Vrij and Grimaldo as well as all the great players they start with. Adzic stole the show with two goals that both came from rebounds. I hope that is a sign that he has a poachers instinct and can continue to do that.

    Birmingham 2 (Jota 4pen, Lincoln 52)
    Newcastle 0

    Pope, Smalling Holding, Gibson, Calabria, Fellaini (Kieftenbeld), Lerma, Sessegnon (Dasilva), Jota, Lincoln, Adzic*

    A more straight forward win here where the interesting thing was that Adzic was MOTM after not contributing any goals or assists. I think that shows his contribution to the general play of the team.

    Arsenal 3 (Luan 44, Lacazette 72, Mkhitaryan 88)
    Birmingham 0

    Pope, Smalling, Holding, Gibson, Calabria, Fellaini, Lerma (Loftus-Cheek), Sessegnon, Jota, Lincoln (Barnes), Adzic (Elyounoussi)

    We really struggled here and Arsenal ran away with the game late on. We have some good quality in the team but we are definitely a few steps behind consistently challenging these kind of teams.

    Summary


    A solid start to season where we got off to a great start with an unexpected win against Man City. Arsenal brought us back down to earth as we really struggled in that game but I am generally happy to get 6 points from those 3 games.

    Europa League

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-euro-cup_-overview-stages.png


    Our group has been drawn and we have Zenit, Braga and AEK. Zenit will be very hard to beat but I am confident we have a chance of finishing second by getting results against AEK and something against Braga.

    Player of the month
    Luka Adzic

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-luka-adzic_-overview-profile.png

    Young player of the month
    Ryan Sessegnon

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-ryan-sessegnon_-overview-profile.png

    League Table

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-english-premier-division_-overview-stages.png

    KLIPPYBO and ninjaskill like this.

  31. Quote Originally Posted by 1magine View Post
    What a rapid amount of success you've made here mate! Great going my friend. That tactic is interesting one as well, did you make it up yourself? It's clearly doing wonders!!
    Thanks for the comment. Even I'm surprised by the success I have had. I'm worried we will struggle this season without Cutrone up top though. I made the tactic myself as I'm not a fan of plug and play as it takes the fun away for me. I'm still playing around with it but I think I have found a good base for it to work.

  32. September

    Birmingham 1 (Jota 81pen)
    Middlesbrough 0

    Pope, Smalling, Holding*, Gibson, Calabria, Fellaini, Lerma, Sessegnon, Jota*, Lincoln, Adzic

    We dominated the game but struggled to break them down. It eventually took a penalty to get us the win.

    Braga 2 (Stojilkovic 4, 62)
    Birmingham 2 (Loftu-Cheek 49, Elyounoussi 52)

    Pope, Smalling, Mawson, Dean, Colin, Kieftenbeld, Loftus-Cheek, Dasilva, Roberts, Barnes, Elyounoussi*

    I am happy with this result considering the facts that I played a lot of my back-up players and we were away from home. If we can draw with them away from home then I hope we can do one better when we play them at home later on.

    Leicester 2 (Vardy 30, 58)
    Birmingham 2 (Sessegnon 27, Lincoln (47)


    Pope, Roberts (Colin), Holding, Gibson (Smalling), Calabria, Fellaini, Lerma, Sessegnon, Jota, Lincoln, Adzic (Elyounoussi)

    Another 2-2 draw and again I am happy with it considering the fact that Calabria was sent off in the second half. Vardy kept breaking behind our back line which has been a common problem for our defence.

    Birmingham 1 (Jota 35)
    Man Utd 2 (Martial 8, Matic 17)

    Johnstone, Smalling (Kieftenbeld), Mawson, Gibson, Colin, Fellaini, Lerma, Dasilva (Sessegnon), Jota, Barnes, Elyounoussi

    We are quickly out of the Carabao Cup as we lose to Man Utd. They started well and then even though we dominated the game, we couldn’t get the 2 goals needed to get back in to the game.

    Birmingham 4 (Lerma 30, Lincoln 59, 60, Adzic 68)
    Wolves 1 (Afobe 77)

    Pope, Smalling, Holding, Gibson, Calabria, Fellaini (Loftus-Cheek), Lerma, Sessegnon, Roberts, Lincoln* (Barnes), Adzic

    A very nice win to end the month We really turned it on in the second half and could have scored even more.

    Summary

    A mixed month where the only loss was to Man Utd in the cup but we did draw two games as well. We scored in every game, so my worry about losing the goals from Cutrones departure has not come to fruition but we also only kept one clean sheet which is worrying.

    Player of the month
    Jefferson Lerma

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-jefferson-lerma_-overview-profile.png

    Young player of the month
    Lincoln

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-lincoln_-overview-profile.png

    League Table

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-english-premier-division_-overview-stages.png

    Abij2 and TheNotSoSpecialOne like this.

  33. October

    Birmingham 0
    Zenit 0

    Pope, Smalling, Mawson, Gibson, Colin, Lerma, Loftus-Cheek, Sessegnon, Roberts, Lincoln (Barnes), Elyounoussi (Adzic)

    I am very happy to get a draw against Zenit. It means only 2 points from 2 games but we have played the two harder teams and remained unbeaten.

    Sheffield Utd 1 (Coman 63)
    Birmingham 2 (Fellaini 39, 83)

    Pope, Smalling, Holding, Gibson, Calabria, Lerma (Loftus-Cheek), Fellaini*, Dasilva, Jota (Roberts), Lincoln, Adzic

    A solid win but it should have been a lot more against a team like Sheffield Utd. Fellaini got his first goals for the club but other than this game he hasn’t really impressed and I am already thinking of changing the midfield.

    Birmingham 5 (Lincoln 21, 66, Loftus-Cheek 31, Jota 52pen, Lerma 81)
    Watford 3 (Richarlison 16, 21, 45)

    Pope, Smalling, Holding, Mawson, Calabria, Lerma, Loftus-Cheek (Fellaini), Sessegnon, Jota, Lincoln, Adzic (Elyounoussi)

    A very nice win here as the flood gates opened up here with 8 goals in the game. Richarlison was unstoppable for them up top as he kept on breaking the back line.

    Birmingham 1 (Barnes 59)
    AEK 0

    Pope, Mawson, Holding, Gibson (Smalling), Colin, Kieftenbeld, Loftus-Cheek (Fellaini), Dasilva, Roberts* (Jota), Barnes, Elyounoussi

    We finally get our first win in Europe against the team that we need to beat twice if we want to get through to the knockout stages. Barnes got his first goal for the club as well which is nice to see.

    Birmingham 3 (Gibson 30, Lincoln 61, 70)
    Everton 0

    Pope, Smalling, Holding (Mawson), Gibson, Calabria, Lerma, Loftus-Cheek (Fellaini), Sessegnon, Jota, Lincoln*, Adzic

    A great result against Everton here as things look to be clicking up top. Lincoln reminds me of Cutrone quite a bit but his finishing is not as consistent just yet as he missed quite a few chances in this game as well as getting his 2 goals.

    Summary

    Another positive month as the goals came quick and fast here after the Zenit game. Things are going well so far but the added competition means we are rotating a lot more to try and avoid tiredness and injuries which means not many players are building up consistent form like they were able to last season.

    Player of the month
    Jefferson Lerma

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-jefferson-lerma_-overview-profile.png

    Young player of the month
    Lincoln

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-lincoln_-overview-profile.png

    League Table


    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-english-premier-division_-overview-stages.png

    TheNotSoSpecialOne likes this.

  34. Quote Originally Posted by bcfc1 View Post
    Thanks for the comment. Even I'm surprised by the success I have had. I'm worried we will struggle this season without Cutrone up top though. I made the tactic myself as I'm not a fan of plug and play as it takes the fun away for me. I'm still playing around with it but I think I have found a good base for it to work.
    Not a problem. I'd imagine so haha! Aye it's always best making your own, I've never been a fan of downloading a tactic and I refuse to do it. Even the very few times I have tried it out of curiosity I end up reverting back to my own because if it's downloaded how to you change it when struggling etc.. Best finding something that works for you. It is an interesting tactic, very odd to the eye

  35. November

    Stoke 0
    Birmingham 1 (Lincoln 87)

    Pope, Smalling, Holding, Gibson, Calabria, Lerma, Loftus-Cheek, Sessegnon, Roberts, Lincoln, Adzic*

    Stoke have had some big investment and have players such as Pickford, Petagna, Valencia and Rafinha and they should have won this game but they had Sturridge up front and he couldn’t finish his chances. We got the winner late on as Lincoln got onto a long ball an smashed in it from 20 yards.

    AEK 1 (Johannson 64)

    Birmingham 4 (Roberts 4, Elyounoussi 28, 84, Barnes 90)

    Johnstone, Mawson, Holding, Dean, Colin, Kieftenbeld, Fellaini, Dasilva, Roberts*, Barnes, Elyounoussi

    A very good performance by a lot of the back-up players as they put us in a very strong position to qualify from our group. The surprising thing for me is that Braga beat Zenit in both of their games so it looks as though it will be me and Braga going through with Zenit going out.

    Birmingham 2 (Smalling 12, Barnes 84)
    Tottenham 1 (Kane 58)

    Pope, Smalling*, Holding, Gibson, Calabria, Lerma, Loftus-Cheek (Fellaini), Sessegnon, Jota, Lincoln (Barnes), Adzic (Elyounoussi)

    It was a great defensive display here to hold Tottenham to just one goal. Especially considering they bought Aguero in the summer and therefore have the best strike partnership I have seen with Kane and Aguero up front.

    West Ham 1 (Arnautovic 85)
    Birmingham 2 (Lincoln 12, 33)

    Pope, Smalling, Holding, Gibson, Calabria, Lerma, Loftus-Cheek, Sessegnon, Jota Lincoln*, Adzic

    Another 2-1 win here as we keep up the good form. I am finally starting to settle on my best 11 although I can already see positions that need improving.

    Birmingham 1 (Barnes 47)
    Braga 1 (Hackman 90)

    Pope, Smalling, Mawson, Gibson (Dean), Colin, Kieftenbeld, Fellaini, Sessegnon (Dasilva), Roberts, Barnes, Elyounoussi (Adzic)

    Really frustrated with this result. They equalised with the last kick of the game really which keeps them top of the group and means we are likely to finish second and get a harder team in the knockout stages. We did confirm out place in the knockout stages though with this game as Zenit lost to AEK somehow.

    Summary

    It was almost a perfect month until Braga got the late equaliser. Things are going extremely well so far as we have confirmed out qualification from our group in the Europa League with a game spare and also sit 2nd in the league with a game in hand on top place Chelsea. I have looked forward to the next month and found that we have 9 games in December which include the teams Chelsea, Liverpool, Man Utd and Man city so this going to be a crazy month.

    Player of the month
    Patrick Roberts

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-patrick-roberts_-overview-profile.png

    Young player of the month
    Davide Calabria


    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-davide-calabria_-overview-profile.png

    With so much of my squad considered a ‘young player’ I am considering getting rid of young player of the month. For example Roberts and Calabria are both the same age so it seems silly for Roberts to win player of the month but not young player of the month.

    League Table

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-english-premier-division_-overview-stages.png


    TheNotSoSpecialOne likes this.

  36. December

    Birmingham 2 (Lincoln 22, 87)

    Huddlesfield 1 (Depoitre 88)

    Pope, Roberts, Mawson, Gibson, Calabria (Colin), Lerma, Loftus-Cheek, Sessegnon, Roberts, Lincoln*, Adzic (Elyounoussi)

    I am getting frustrated with the number of late goals we are conceding. Thankfully it didn’t cost us any points here but it is costing us a lot of possible clean sheets.

    Chelsea 1 (Mandzukic 81pen)
    Birmingham 0


    Pope, Smalling, Mawson*, Gibson, Colin, Lerma, Fellaini, Sessegnon, Roberts (Jota), Lincoln (Barnes), Adzic

    Another late goal and it does cost us points this time. It also means we lose top place in the league. To be fair though we had absolutely no chances in this game and if Chelsea didn’t win it then it would have been a steal.

    Zenit 0
    Birmingham 4 (Kieftenbeld 34, Barnes 56, 79, Fellaini 64)

    Johnstone, Dean, Mawson, Gibson (Loftus-Cheek), Colin, Kieftenbeld, Fellaini, Dasilva, Jota, Barnes*, Elyounoussi

    What a result. With us already through to the knockout stages I decided to rest a lot of regulars but the back-ups pulled out the performance of the season so far. They never really had a chance. As our prize we have been drawn against AS Monaco in the knockout stages. So we won’t be getting further then.

    Birmingham 1 (Lerma 15)

    West Brom 0

    Pope, Smalling, Holding, Gibson, Calabria, Lerma*, Loftus-Cheek, Sessegnon, Roberts, Lincoln (Barnes), Adzic (Elyounoussi)

    The rest from Zenit’s game seemed to work as we controlled this game and even though it was only 1 goal, we never looked in danger of losing it. A clean sheet in the league is a great thing to see as well.

    Southampton 1 (Redmond 90)
    Birmingham 2 (Adzic 30, Barnes 78)


    Pope, Smalling, Mawson, Gibson, Colin, Lerma, Fellaini, Sessegnon, Jota (Roberts), Lincoln (Barnes), Adzic*

    I feel like I am suffering with déjà vu with how many times I see us concede late goals. I have now created a slightly more defensive version of my tactic where I drop my wing backs to make a back 5 and that will hopefully help us see games out in the future.

    Birmingham 4 (Roberts 9, Elyounoussi 76, Loftus-Cheek 81, 86)
    Liverpool 0

    Pope, Smalling, Mawson, Gibson (Holding), Calabria, Lerma (Kieftenbeld), Loftus-Cheek*, Sessegnon (Dasilva), Roberts, Lincoln, Elyounoussi

    Forget what I said about the Zenit game, this is the performance of the season. 3 of the goals may have come late on but we absolutely controlled this game. Liverpool are collapsing and sit in mid-table but I still couldn’t have predicted such a good result.

    Man Utd 5 (Asensio 8, Lukaku 9, 26, Sanchez 42, 46)
    Birmingham 0

    Pope, Dean, Holding, Roberts, Colin, Kieftenbeld, Fellaini, Dasilva, Roberts (Adzic), Barnes, Elyounoussi

    And we are brought straight back down to earth here. I rested a lot of players here as I felt other games were going to be more important but I did not expect such a poor performance. This game could have been double figures with the number of chances that they missed as well. We had just one shot in this game and it wasn’t on target.

    Birmingham 3 (Marques 9, Adzic 27, Loftus-Cheek 53)
    Crystal Palace 1 (Benteke 69)

    Pope, Smalling, Mawson, Gibson, Calabria*, Lerma, Loftus-Cheek (Fellaini), Sessegnon (Dasilva), Roberts, Marques, Adzic

    Lincoln had a slight knock and Barnes was tired from the Man Utd game so I brought in Marques for his first start of the season and he delivered with his first goal for the club. For some reason both Townsend and Zaha were on the bench and it meant they struggled to hurt us at the back.

    Birmingham 2 (Lincoln 52, 69)
    Man City 0

    Pope, Smalling, Holding, Gibson, Calabria, Kieftenbeld, Loftus-Cheek, Sessegnon, Elyounoussi, Lincoln*, Adzic

    A great end to a busy month as we were pretty comfortable here. Lincoln delivered with the goals but it was Adzic who delivered two identical balls for Lincoln to tap in. I don’t regularly have playmakers out on the wing but it is so effective as they are able to get the space to play killer balls.

    Summary

    Well that was a hectic month. 7 wins and 2 losses from 9 games is not bad going at all. The Man Utd result was obviously a big low point but it was against a lot of the back-up players and if it meant that the players were fit to win other games like the Man City game then it was worth it.

    Player of the month
    Mohammed Elyounoussi

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-mohammed-elyounoussi_-overview-profile.png

    League Table


    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-english-premier-division_-overview-stages-2.png


  37. January

    After a small break as I was involved in the four in one thread I am back to this story as I hope to finish this season as well as it started.

    Newcastle 1 (Mitrovic 37)
    Birmingham 2 (Adzic 43, Lincoln 68pen)

    Pope, Smalling (Mawson), Holding, Gibson (Mawson), Calabria, Lerma, Loftus-Cheek, Sessegnon, Roberts (Elyounoussi), Lincoln, Adzic*

    It’s always nice to start the new year with a win and that’s what we did here against a good side. Adzic delivered another great display to get us the win.

    Norwich 0
    Birmingham 2 (Barnes 24, Dean 73)

    Johnstone, Smalling (Holding), Mawson, Dean*, Colin, Kieftenbeld, Loftus-Cheek (Lerma), Dasilva, Roberts (Adzic), Barnes, Elyounoussi

    I made a lot of changes for this cup game and thankfully they were able to get the job done. We haven’t really challenged in the cup since the first season and I hope to see that change soon.

    Birmingham 0
    Arsenal 1 (Mustafi 14)

    Pope, Smalling (Mawson), Holding, Gibson, Calabria, Lerma, Loftus-Cheek, Sessegnon (Dasilva), Elyounoussi, Lincoln, Adzic

    We couldn’t get any result here against a very good Arsenal side. When they have players like Luan, Aubameyang and Tolisso you can tell they have a very good squad.

    Birmingham 3 (Lincoln 14, 82, Adzic 54)
    Leicester 1 (Musa 60)


    Pope, Smalling, Holding, Gibson, Calabria (Colin), Lerma, Loftus-Cheek, Sessegnon, Jota (Elyounoussi), Lincoln*, Adzic

    A very nice win here that keeps us at the top of the table. These are the kind of teams that I thought we would lose to but these kind of results makes me feel that we really are close to being a top team.

    Middlesbrough 0
    Birmingham 1 (Lincoln 2pen)

    Pope, Smalling, Mawson, Gibson*, Calabria (Colin), Lerma, Loftus-Cheek, Sessegnon (Dasilva), Roberts, Lincoln, Adzic

    A pretty poor result really against a team in the bottom 3. We need to be beating these teams with more ease if we want to challenge on more than one front.

    Summary

    A solid month with just one loss against Arsenal means we stay at the top of the table. There is a very close group behind us but they are a few points behind us as we have developed a gap between the rest. The next month brings us back into the Europa League against AS Monaco which I am excited about as we have nothing to lose against them.

    Transfers

    I try to avoid doing too much business in January and there was only one change in this window. Marc Roberts wanted to leave as he wanted to get more game time so after selling him to Leeds in a £4mil deal I spent a similar amount on bringing in Mason Holgate. He will probably be no more than a back-up player but he is of a similar quality to Roberts and considerably younger.

    Player of the month
    Ben Gibson


    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-ben-gibson_-overview-profile.png

    League Table

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-english-premier-division_-overview-stages.png



  38. February

    Birmingham 2 (Colin 30, Barnes 71)
    Everton 1 (Sigurdsson 48)


    Johnstone, Holgate, Holding, Dean, Colin*, Kieftenbeld, Fellaini, Dasilva (Sessegnon), Jota, Barnes, Elyounoussi

    I brought in a lot of back-up players for this cup game and they saw us over the line. Barnes has been a very good as the back-up striker and is very effective from crosses that the wing backs put in.

    Wolves 0
    Birmingham 1 (Loftus-Cheek 47)

    Pope, Smalling*, Mawson, Gibson, Calabria, Lerma (Kieftenbeld), Loftus-Cheek, Sessegnon, Roberts (Jota), Lincoln (Barnes), Adzic

    The regular first team came back in for this one and they weren’t the most impressive. Wolves are a good team that have spent a lot of money but we should be more comfortable against these teams now.

    Birmingham 6 (Jota 8, Smalling 13, Lincoln 48, Loftus-Cheek 68, Adzic 84, Mawson 87)
    Sheffield Utd 0

    Pope, Smalling*, Mawson, Gibson, Calabria (Colin), Lerma, Loftus-Cheek, Sessegnon, Jota (Elyounoussi), Lincoln, Adzic

    This is the kind of result I am very happy to see. Sheffield Utd are struggling at the bottom of the table and we heaped a lot of misery on to them here. Smalling may have won MOTM but it was Loftus-Cheek who ran things from midfield. When he is on his game, he is a great CM.

    Watford 6 (Romero 7, 48, Holgate 19og, Deeney 82pen, 90pen, Peneranda 90)
    Bimingham 0

    Johnstone, Holgate, Holding, Dean, Colin, Kieftenbeld, Fellaini, Sessegnon, Elyounoussi, Barnes, Adzic (Jota)

    Well. I don’t know what to say. I have Monaco in midweek so I decided to rest a lot of first team players here but this result should never have happened. I wish I could explain it on getting an early red card or picking up injuries but none of that happened. We were just absolutely destroyed by a pretty poor Watford team as they sit just above the relegation zone.

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-grant-ndow_-inbox.png
    I haven’t seen this before but the squad knew how poor they were by refunding the fans for their journey to watch the game.

    Birmingham 0
    AS Monaco 0

    Pope, Smalling, Mawson, Gibson, Calabria, Lerma, Loftus-Cheek, Sessegnon, Jota (Lincoln), Barnes (Fellaini), Elyounoussi*

    I am pretty happy with this result. Monaco are not as good a team as I thought they would be and they don’t really have any superstars in the squad. They weren’t able to get any away goals here so if we can score at their ground then we are in a very good position to qualify.

    Birmingham 5 (Kieftenbeld 7, Lincoln 8, 14, Jota 32, Fellaini 42)
    Wolves 1 (Gudmundsson 39)

    Johnstone, Smalling, Holding, Dean, Colin, Kieftenbeld, Fellaini, Sessegnon (Calabria), Jota, Lincoln* (Barnes), Adzic (Elyounoussi)

    I made some changes for this cup game but not as many as usual as we are starting to pick up some knocks and I do not have the depth anymore to rotate. I am hoping a few players are back soon so I can rotate more often.

    AS Monaco 2 (Dendoncker 79, Jovetic 87)
    Birmingham 3 (Lincoln 4, 61, Kieftenbeld 90)

    Pope, Smalling, Mawson, Gibson, Calabria, Lerma, Loftus-Cheek (Kieftenbeld), Sessegnon, Elyounoussi (Jota), Lincoln Adzic*

    What a result. What a game. We got an early goal and then once we got the second I thought we were done. They then got 2 late goals to put us under pressure and then when there was a clip in the 92nd minute I was sure they were going to score again to screw us over but it was Kieftenbeld who scored for us on the counter and wrapped up a historic win.

    Summary

    The horrendous Watford result means the teams behind us have caught a bit more and that our goal difference has dropped as well but right now I am not too bothered as we have beaten AS Monaco in the Europa League and are through to the next round. I never thought we had a chance against them but we were probably the better team and now it will just be fun to see how far we can go.
    Youth Intake

    I don’t usually talk about youth intake as I have seen potential superstars become nothing and players with a potential of just 2 stars become World player of the year winners, but I have had this youngster come through and he looks like he could develop into a great Central Midfielder. I hope to see him develop into a superstar in the next few years but he is only 15 so it will take a little bit of time to get there.

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-spencer-norris_-overview-profile.png

    Player of the Month
    Lincoln

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-lincoln_-overview-profile.png

    League Table

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-english-premier-division_-overview-stages.png



  39. March

    Everton 4 (Sandro 4, 14, 27, Sigurdsson 90pen)
    Birmingham 2 (Adzic 67, Barnes 90)


    Pope, Smalling, Mawson (Dean), Holding, Colin, Lerma, Loftus-Cheek (Kieftenbeld), Dasilva, Elyounoussi (Jota), Barnes, Adzic

    I rotated the team again here and the risk did not work. Sandro was lethal up top for Everton as he only had 3 shots but he converted all 3 of them and the game was pretty much over after he scored the 3rd in just the 27th minute.

    Birmingham 2 (Jota 6pen, Barnes 44)
    Stoke 1 (Petagna 10)

    Johnstone, Holgate, Mawson, Dean (Gibson), Colin, Kieftenbeld, Miles, Dasilva (Sessegnon), Jota*, Barnes, Adzic (Elyounoussi)

    A very nice win here and a debut for Adam Miles who came through the youth intake last year. I am hoping he will eventually be part of the starting midfield alongside the other youngster, Norris, that I mentioned in the previous post.

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-adam-miles_-overview-profile.png

    Bilbao 0
    Birmingham 0

    Pope, Smalling, Mawson, Gibson*, Calabria (Colin), Lerma, Loftus-Cheek, Sessegnon, Jota (Elyounoussi), Lincoln (Barnes), Adzic

    A solid result here away from home but I would have liked to get an away goal. We are going to have to be very careful to not concede in the second leg otherwise we are going to be a lot of trouble.

    Tottenham 0
    Birmingham 2 (Lincoln 74, Lerma 86)

    Johnstone, Holgate, Holding, Dean, Colin, Kieftenbeld (Lerma), Norris (Adzic), Dasilva, Roberts*, Barnes (Lincoln), Elyounoussi

    With this game sitting in between the two legs I decided to rotate again and this time it didn’t lead to a heavy defeat. I also gave another debut, this time to 15yr old Norris who becomes the youngest ever player for the club. He played well but tired very quickly but this is to be expected from such a young player.

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-grant-ndow_-inbox-2.png

    Birmingham 2 (Smalling 81, Elyounoussi 87)
    Bilbao 0

    Pope, Smalling*, Mawson, Gibson, Calabria, Lerma, Loftus-Cheek, Sessegnon, Roberts (Jota), Lincoln, Adzic (Elyounoussi)

    Another great result here as two late goals gave us the win. Between our two goals there were probably 3 or 4 really good chances for Bilbao to get the away goal but we got that bit of luck we needed to get through.

    Birmingham 4 (Lincoln 25, Roberts 69, 104, Loftus-Cheek 105)
    Newcastle 2 (Dawson 74, Mounie 89)

    Pope, Smalling, Mawson, Gibson (Holding), Calabria (Colin), Lerma, Loftus-Cheek, Sessegnon (Dasilva), Roberts*, Lincoln, Adzic

    We are through again in the FA Cup but it took extra time for us to do so. We threw away a two goal lead but then got it back again and are now through to the Semi-Finals.

    Summary

    A very good month here means we are through in the Europa League and the FA Cup and still involved in a title race in the league. With so many games the team are becoming tired and getting knocks so while the rotation is costing me some games, it is needed to try and focus on certain games.

    Player of the month
    Ruben Loftus-Cheek

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-ruben-loftus-cheek_-overview-profile.png

    League Table

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-english-premier-division_-overview-stages.png


    ninjaskill likes this.

  40. April

    Huddlesfield 2 (Holding 81og, Szalai 90)
    Birmingham 1 (Barnes 89)

    Johnstone, Holgate, Holding, Fellaini, Colin, Kieftenbeld, Norris, Dasilva, Jota, Barnes*, Elyounoussi

    2 big mistakes cost us the points here and probably cost us the title. Holding some how scored an own goal from a sliding challenge outside of the box and Szalai’s goal came from an Elyounoussi back pass from in the oppositions half. It was very weird to watch but we have had some great luck this season so it had to turn at some stage.

    Liverpool 4 (Salah 23, Lallana 29, Jose 68, Lovren 90)
    Birmingham 2 (Lerma 37, Lincoln 66)

    Pope, Smalling, Holding (Colin), Gibson, Calabria, Lerma, Loftus-Cheek (Kieftenbeld), Sessegnon, Roberts, Lincoln (Barnes), Adzic

    This looks as though we are going out of the Europa League. They took a quick lead and even though we battled back to be drawing, they pushed again and the late goal by Lovren has almost put this to bed in the first leg.

    Birmingham 2 (Miles 50, 70)
    Chelsea 4 (Zouma 20, Wilian 40, Hazard 53, 66pen)


    Pope, Smalling, Mawson, Gibson, Calabria (Colin), Lerma (Kieftenbeld), Miles, Sessegnon (Dasilva), Jota, Lincoln, Elyounoussi

    Now this is the title gone. Chelsea are the team we were competing with but them winning here means we have a lot of work to do and very little time to do so. Miles got our 2 goals and these are his first 2 for the club. I hope to see this continue.

    Birmingham 2 (Lincoln 8, 33)
    Liverpool 1 (Bakambu 51)

    Pope, Smalling (Holding), Mawson, Gibson, Colin, Lerma (kieftenbeld), Loftus-Cheek, Sessegnon, Jota; Lincoln*, Adzic (Elyounoussi)

    So close but we do fall out of the Europa League. We were 2-0 up for a while which would have seen us through on away goals but Liverpool got on back and we were unable to get a 3rd goal to get us through.

    West Brom 2 (Rudiaz 33pen, Chadli 71)
    Birmingham 3 (Elyounoussi 28, Norris 65, Barnes 76)

    Johnstone, Holgate, Holding (Mawson), Fellaini, Calabria, Kieftenbeld, Norris*, Dasilva (Sessegnon), Roberts, Barnes, Elyounoussi

    It was nice to get a win in the league and to have 2 in a row after what has been a hard month so far. Norris got his first goal for the club which made him the youngest goalscorer of all time at the club. That is 2 records he has taken from Trevor Francis now.

    Birmingham 3 (Jota 37pen, 55, Lincoln 52)
    West Ham 1 (Hernandez 34)

    Johnstone, Holgate, Holding, Gibson, Colin, Miles (Kieftenbeld), Loftus-Cheek, Dasilva, Jota*, Lincoln, Elyounoussi

    Another win here means we have all but guaranteed a top 4 finish. It would be amazing to finish in the top 3 and guarantee the group stages as that will bring in some good money for the club.

    Man Utd 1 (Lukaku 50)
    Birmingham 1 (Loftus-Cheek 83)
    5-3 After Penalties

    Pope, Holding, Mawson*, Gibson, Calabria (Colin), Lerma (Kieftenbeld), Loftus-Cheek, Sessegnon, Roberts, Lincoln (Barnes), Elyounoussi

    We are out of the FA Cup at the Semi-Final stage. The game was very close and it took penalties to decide it with Elyounoussi missing the key penalty. I am slightly disappointed in going out but I am happy that we can take a team like Man Utd to penalties and not just by defending for the whole game.

    Birmingham 3 (Barnes 39, Roberts 52, Fellaini 69)
    Southampton 3 (Balotelli 12, 86, Raphinha 90)

    Pope, Holgate, Holding, Gibson (Kieftenbeld), Colin, Lerma, Fellaini, Sessegnon (Dasilva), Roberts, Barnes, Jota

    While it isn’t mathematically over, this has given the title to Chelsea, We are now 5 points behind with 3 games to go. They scored 2 late goals with Raphinha’s goal coming with the last kick of the game.

    Summary


    This was a key month in terms of the League, Europa League and FA Cup and we have lost all 3 of them. The Europa League was always a dream as there is such hard competition and I am pleased we were able to get to the quarter-finals. The FA Cup was a good run and I just missed that luck you need in a penalty shoot-out. The league has been a disappointment, with us dropping points against Huddlesfield, Chelsea and Southampton. This month has shown me that rotating the squad has really big consequences and next time I may get the players to play through knocks and tiredness.

    Player of the month
    Patrick Roberts

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-patrick-roberts_-overview-profile.png

    League Table

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-english-premier-division_-overview-stages.png



  41. May

    Crystal Palace 2 (Minamino 57, Zaha 90)
    Birmingham 1 (Loftus-cheek 14)

    Pope, Holding, Mawson, Gibson, Calabria (Colin), Lerma, Loftus-Cheek, Sessegnon, Roberts, Lincoln (Barnes), Elyounoussi

    After taking an early lead, it was two wonder strikes from Palace that got them the win. Combined together the distance for their two goals was over 55 yards. Zaha’s in particular was fantastic and even at this late stage could be a goal of the season contender.

    Birmingham 2 (Lincoln 15, 56)
    Man Utd 2 (Matic 82, Lukaku 84)

    Pope, Smalling, Mawson (Holding), Gibson, Colin, Lerma (Kieftenbeld), Loftus-Cheek, Sessegnon (Dasilva), Roberts, Lincoln*, Adzic

    We threw away a 2 goal lead here late on with sloppy defending. If a team can score great strikes like Palace before or great team goals then I don’t get too disheartened but, both of Man Utd’s goals were avoidable as 2 poor pass backs should never happen in a game.

    Liverpool 2 (Immobile 52pen, Oxlade-Chamberlain 67)
    Birmingham 2 (Smalling 10, Roberts 32)

    Pope, Smalling, Mawson, Gibson, Colin (Calabria), Lerma (Kieftenbeld), Loftus-Cheek, Sessegnon, Roberts* (Elyounoussi), Lincoln, Adzic

    And the season ends in a whimper as we throw away a two goal lead again. We started very well and could have scored even more but Liverpool were definitely the better team in the second half and could have won it with their chances.

    Summary

    A pretty poor month really with 6 goals conceded in 3 games and only 2 points taken. It only had 3 games but I think this is the first month where we have not won a single game. The lack of points here meant we also dropped below Man City and actually finished in 3rd place.

    Player of the month
    Lincoln

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-lincoln_-overview-profile.png

    League Table

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-english-premier-division_-overview-stages.png



    TheNotSoSpecialOne likes this.

  42. End of Season Review

    It has definitely been a positive season, even if it did all dwindle away at the end. We had great runs in the Europa League, FA Cup and were challenging for the league title until about 5-8 games to go. If I was offered that in just my second season in the league then I would have taken it but I do feel a little of what if we had just had a bit of luck in key games. I have been given another big budget of £80mil for the summer to try and improve the squad again as for the first time in the clubs history we are playing in the Champions League. We are going to be a very low seed for the groups so I expect it to be a major challenge and dropping into the Europa League and having a go in that again would not be a negative outcome.

    Final League Table

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-english-premier-division_-overview-stages-2.png

    Squad

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-birmingham-city_-players-players.pngKeep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-birmingham-city_-players-players-2.png

    Player of the Season
    Lincoln

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-lincoln_-overview-profile-2.png

    I was close to giving it to Patrick Roberts as he provided 17 assists from the right wing but Lincoln was able to deliver consistent goals up top and scored 32 times during the season. To do that in his first season is very impressive and now that he is settled at the club I hope that he can deliver that again at least next season.


    Other Information

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-grant-ndow_-inbox-2.pngKeep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-grant-ndow_-inbox-3.pngKeep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-grant-ndow_-inbox.png




  43. Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-birmingham_city_fc.png

    Pre-Season Update




    In another summer of change, transfer records were broken and broken again for both transfers coming in and definitely for players going out.



    Players out

    The first sale broke the club record as we sold Nick Pope to Man City for £18mil. I didn’t want to sell him but the money was really good and I found an alternative for much less than that.



    The next one broke the record again as we sold Alfie Mawson to Stoke for a deal that could be worth up to £28mil. Again I didn’t really want to sell here as Mawson had started to push Holding out of the team at the end of the season. The money was incredible and there were other good English centre backs that I signed with that money.



    The final big deal was the biggest deal of all and destroyed the club record for a transfer sale. Luka Adzic was wanted by PSG and once they came in with an offer, Adzic wanted to go. We negotiated a deal that could bring in £50mil as long as Adzic can break into the Serbia team. This is by far the biggest transfer in the club’s history and probably won’t be broken for a while.



    We also sold a few other players for lower fees. Maikel Kieftenbeld and Harlee Dean both left for £8.5mil each and Jay Dasilva and Isaac Vassell left for a combined £5mil. They were all good squad players but they were no longer needed as we look to continue our push up the table. We also loaned a load of youngsters out again but I plan to keep my 2 young CM’s, Norris and Miles, at the club and give them more game time.



    Players in



    Goalkeepers



    After seeing that Pickford was being paid £140k a week, I decided I would have to look abroad for a new keeper. I signed Mattia Perin from Genoa for £8.5mil. He has all the attributes of a good keeper and came in for considerably less than we sold Pope for.

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-mattia-perin_-overview-profile.png



    Centre Backs



    I signed James Tarkowski and Callum Chambers from Watford and Arsenal. They joined for £12.75mil and £13mil and provide better depth to the back line. It also means we have only 5 centre backs as I hope to give youngster Norris some game time in that position.

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-calum-chambers_-overview-profile.pngKeep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-james-tarkowski_-overview-profile.png



    Wing Backs




    Danny Rose was transfer listed at Tottenham and I moved quickly to bring him in for £13mil. He brings great experience to the squad and I hope he can perform when called upon but I do still plan on keeping Sessegnon as first choice.

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-danny-rose_-overview-profile.png



    Central Midfield



    My first and biggest move was to bring in Loftus-Cheek permanently. He has had 2 great seasons for us and I had no problem in breaking the club record to sign him for £25mil. While seen as a playmaker by the scouts, I see him as a perfect B2B midfielder as he has the physical stats to do that job and then the technicals to do it well. I also signed Vlad Stoica for just £1.7mil. I wanted a back-up for Jefferson Lerma and Stoica has all the attributes to be a very good Carrilero. He will get some decent game time alongside Miles and Norris.

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-ruben-loftus-cheek_-overview-profile.pngKeep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-vlad-stoica_-overview-profile.png



    Wingers



    My first signing here was to bring in Richarlison for £24mil. After Watford’s relegation, he wanted to move and he has performed incredibly well for them so I hope he can deliver like that for me. I also signed James Maddison from Norwich for £13mil. He is more of a number 10 but I hope to turn him into one of my wide men. He scored 15 goals for Norwich last season in the championship and I feel one of the weaknesses of my wide men is that they don’t score enough so I hope he can change that.

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-richarlison_-overview-profile.pngKeep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-james-maddison_-overview-profile.png



    Strikers



    There have been no changes here as I look to Lincoln to lead the line and Barnes to provide cover. I now also have Richarlison and Maddison that can play up there so we have more options.



    Youngsters



    I also signed 2 youngsters from Bosnia and Serbia. Alija Huremovic and Uros Stancic joined for small money and both went straight back out on loan along with the bunch of other youngsters we have. Our facilities are improving but they are still not there yet so the youngsters will be better off on loan for another year or so.

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-alija-huremovic_-overview-profile.pngKeep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-uros-stancic_-overview-profile.png



    Squad




    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-birmingham-city_-overview.pngKeep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-birmingham-city_-overview-2.png

    Other News


    After the Euros, there were a couple of international jobs going and I was lucky enough to get the Italy job. They have some great young players on the game that are now coming through and I think we will have a great chance in the World Cup in two years time as long as they are playing for their clubs.




    Last edited by bcfc1; 13/08/2018 at 03:18 PM.
    TheNotSoSpecialOne likes this.

  44. August

    Birmingham 0
    Crystal Palace 0

    Perin, Tarkowski, Holding, Gibson*, Calabria, Lerma, Loftus-Cheek (Maddison), Sessegnon, Richarlison, Lincoln, Elyounoussi (Jota)

    The season starts and it kicks off with what must be a strong contender for most boring game of the season. Not much happened at either end and no team deserved the points here.

    Wolves 0
    Birmingham 0

    Perin, Tarkowski, Holding (Smalling), Gibson, Calabria (Colin), Lerma, Loftus-Cheek, Sessegnon, Richarlison, Lincoln, Elyounoussi

    I may have said that the Palace game was contender for most boring game of the season but this one is making it a hard competition. From the whole 90 minutes I can remember one chance where Afobe hit it about 10 yards wide and he was offside anyway.

    Birmingham 5 (Lincoln 17, 90, Tarkowski 39, Richarlison 52, Lerma 66)

    Stoke 0

    Perin, Tarkowski, Holding, Gibson, Calabria (Colin), Lerma, Loftus-Cheek (Stoica), Sessegnon, Richarlison, Lincoln*, Elyounoussi

    It may have taken until the 3rd game of the season but we definitely got started here. The early goal helped and from then on it was just how many were we going to get. It’s always nice to see a team click and that is what happened here.

    Champions League

    Our group stage has been drawn and I don’t think it is humanly possible to put together a harder group.

    Name:  European Champions Cup_ Overview Stages.png
Views: 2
Size:  20.6 KB

    We are of course 4th seeds so it was always going to be a hard group but to be drawn with Real Madrid, AS Monaco and AC Milan is going to be an incredible challenge. I will be pleased if we are able to get a single point from anywhere.

    Player of the month
    James Tarkowski

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-james-tarkowski_-overview-profile.png

    League Table

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-english-premier-division_-overview-stages.png

    TheNotSoSpecialOne likes this.

  45. September

    Everton 1 (Tosun 36)
    Birmingham 3 (Lincoln 34, Gibson 45, Loftus-Cheek 85)


    Perin, Tarkowski, Holding, Gibson, Calabria*, Stoica (Lerma), Loftus-Cheek, Sessegnon (Rose), Richarlison (Jota), Lincoln, Maddison

    A solid win after an international break as I brought in a couple of changes as players returned a little tired from international duty.

    Birmingham 1 (Elyounoussi 27)
    AS Monaco 1 (Lopes 90)

    Perin, Smalling, Holding, Gibson, Calabria (Colin), Lerma, Loftus-Cheek, Rose, Jota, Lincoln (Barnes), Elyounoussi*

    Elyounoussi scored a great individual goal as he dribbled from our own half and beat 3 or 4 men before smashing it in at the near post. It reminded me a lot of Giggs’ famous goal against Arsenal but it wasn’t enough to get 3 points as Lopes scored a last minute equaliser from a corner.

    Birmingham 2 (Lincoln 33, Tarkowski 84)
    Man City 0

    Perin, Tarkowski, Holding*, Gibson, Calabria (Colin), Lerma, Loftus-Cheek (Maddison), Sessegnon, Richarlison, Lincoln, Elyounoussi

    A solid performance here where we actually didn’t look like losing. Maybe they would have had a better chance if they had started there £120mil signing Harry Kane instead of leaving him on the bench.

    Burnley 1 (Martinez 60)
    Birmingham 3 (Barnes 7, Stoica 20, Maddison 62)

    Johnstone, Chambers, Holding, Smalling (Tarkowski), Colin, Stoica, Maddison (Lerma), Rose, Jota, Barnes (Lincoln), Dunlop*

    A very nice victory here means we are through to the next round of the Carabao Cup. I was able to play a lot of the back-up players, including youngster Dunlop who played his first game for the club and gave a MOTM performance.

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-russell-dunlop_-overview-profile.png

    Leicester 0
    Birmingham 2 (Lincoln 34, 42pen)


    Perin, Tarkowski, Holding, Gibson, Calabria, Lerma, Loftus-Cheek, Sessegnon (Rose), Richarlison, Lincoln*, Elyounoussi (Maddison)

    A very nice win here where we weren’t at our best but we still got a comfortable win. We look to have become one of the better teams in the league where we don’t have to be at our very best to beat teams.

    AC Milan 1 (Locatelli 31)
    Birmingham 0

    Perin, Chambers, Tarkowski (Elyounoussi), Gibson, Colin, Lerma (Stoica), Loftus-Cheek, Rose, Richarlison, Lincoln (Barnes), Maddison*

    I’m not sure how to feel about this game as to only lose by one goal to AC Milan away from home is not a poor result but we played so well that we deserved at least a point. Maddison created a lot of chances but Lincoln could not finish any of them.

    Italy

    Holland 1 (Rugani 39og)
    Italy 0

    Donnarumma, Rugani, Bonucci, Romagnoli, Florenzi (Zappacosta), Jorginho, Verratti, Emerson, Berardi (Bernadeschi), Cutrone, Insigne (Chielsa)

    This is our first game of the International League where our group is Holland and Sweden. Not the start I wanted to my international career but it was a good game where a mistake from Rugani was the difference maker.

    Italy 2 (Belotti 25, Berardi 90)
    Sweden 0

    Donnarumma, Caldera, Bonucci (Bastoni), Romagnoli, Florenzi (Zappacosta), Jorginho (Cristante), Gagliadini, Spinazzola, Berardi*, Belotti, Chielsa

    A more solid result here but it did take a 90th minute goal to just make the result certain. It looks as though it will be a battle between us and Holland to see who goes through the group stage.

    Player of the Month
    Rob Holding

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-rob-holding_-overview-profile.png

    League Table

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-english-premier-division_-overview-stages.png



  46. October

    Birmingham 1 (Lincoln 26pen)
    Newcastle 1 (Laxalt 90)

    Perin, Tarkowski (Smalling), Holding, Gibson, Calabria*, Lerma, Miles, Sessegnon, Richarlison (Jota), Lincoln, Elyounoussi

    We threw away 2 points here as we couldn’t convert loads of chances and then got caught out late in the game with a scrappy equaliser.

    Derby 0
    Birmingham 2 (Maddison 5, Lerma 87)

    Perin, Smalling, Chambers, Gibson (Tarkowski), Colin, Stoica, Loftus-Cheek (Lerma), Rose, Jota, Barnes, Maddison*

    I made a lot of changes here as we have a massive game coming up and we were still able to get the 3 points. Maddison was great on the wing and controlled the game high up the pitch.

    Real Madrid 4 (Ronaldo 20pen, Higuain 24, Isco 87, 90)
    Birmingham 2 (Lincoln 30, Loftus-Cheek 79)

    Perin, Tarkowski, Holding, Gibson, Calabria (Colin), Lerma, Loftus-Cheek, Sessegnon, Richarlison, Lincoln (Barnes), Elyounoussi (Rose)

    I’m so frustrated with this result. After they scored 2 early goals I was worried the game was going to become a cricket score but we fought back and when Loftus-Cheek equalised with 11 minutes to go I getting optimistic of snatching a point. It wasn’t to be though as Madrid brought on Isco and Bale and they connected together twice for 2 late goals.

    Birmingham 3 (Lerma 10, Loftus-Cheek 29, Jota 47)
    Arsenal 3 (Koscielny 38, Otavio 77, Aubameyang 78)

    Perin, Tarkowski, Holding (Smalling), Gibson, Calabria, Lerma*, Loftus-Cheek (Maddison), Rose, Jota, Lincoln, Elyounoussi

    Another game where we throw it away. What I did realise though is this is the first point we have taken from Arsenal. We have been able to get results against almost every other team but Arsenal have been the team we haven’t been able to do anything against until now.

    Man City 1 (Man 118)
    Birmingham 0

    Perin, Chambers, Smalling, Tarkowski (Gibson), Colin, Stoica, Maddison, Rose (Sessegnon), Jota (Elyounoussi), Barnes, Richarlison (Lincoln)

    We are out of the Carabao Cup here as a goal late in extra time knocks us out. Jota missed a penalty in the 87th minute to win it in normal time and that cost us here.

    Chelsea 0
    Birmingham 2 (Richarlison 45, Lincoln 57)


    Perin, Tarkowski, Holding, Gibson, Calabria, Lerma, Loftus-Cheek, Sessegnon (Rose), Richarlison*, Lincoln, Elyounoussi

    A very nice way to finish the month as we get a result against a very good team. Chelsea have won the league for the last 2 seasons and would have been top again if they won here but we caught them out with a goal just before half time and got a second not long after the break.

    Italy

    Italy 1 (Chiesa 38)
    Holland 0

    Donnarumma, Rugani, Caldara, Romagnoli, Florenzi*, Jorginho, Verratti, Spinazzola (Emerson), Berardi (Bernadeshi), Belotti (Cutrone), Chiesa

    Our only game of the month with Italy gives us a vital win against Holland. I didn’t realise before that Sweden beat Holland in their first game so we are in a prime position to qualify from our group.

    Summary

    A pretty poor month here as we go out of the Carabao Cup, lose our Champions League game to Real Madrid, and throw away points against Newcastle and Arsenal in the league. We did get a win against Chelsea though which is a great result as they have been so dominant for the last couple of the years.

    Player of the Month
    Richarlison

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-richarlison_-overview-profile.png

    League Table
    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-english-premier-division_-overview-stages.png




  47. November

    Birmingham 1 (Loftus-Cheek 65)
    Real Madrid 1 (Lerma 78og)

    Perin*, Tarkowski, Holding, Gibson, Calabria, Lerma, Loftus-Cheek (Maddison), Sessegnon, Richarlison, Lincoln (Barnes), Elyounoussi

    An incredible result here as we take a point from Real Madrid. We had to be really good defensively in this game which is shown by Perin picking up the MOTM award and I thought we might sneak all 3 points when Loftus-Cheek gave us the lead but an unfortunate own goal from Lerma means we take 1 point which I am more than happy with.

    Birmingham 1 (Miles 12)
    West Brom 0

    Perin, Smalling, Chambers, Gibson (Tarkowski), Colin, Stoica, Miles*, Rose, Jota, Lincoln (Barnes), Maddison

    A solid win here with youngster Miles getting the goal and getting the MOTM award. I rotated the starting team a little here and thankfully we still got the 3 important points.

    Southampton 0
    Birmingham 1 (Stephens 47og)

    Perin, Smalling, Chambers*, Gibson (Tarkowski), Colin, Stoica, Loftus-Cheek (Lerma), Rose, Jota, Lincoln (Richarlison), Maddison

    A very similar game to the West Brom one. I made only one change as I brought Loftus-Cheek back in for Miles and we snuck a 1-0 win. I’m never confident when we only have a 1 goal lead as I have seen us concede so many late goals but we were able to hold onto the clean sheet here for all 3 points.

    AS Monaco 1 (Soler 67)
    Birmingham 4 (Elyounoussi 8, Sessegnon 31, Lincoln 51, 90)

    Perin, Tarkowski, Holding, Chambers, Calabria (Colin), Stoica (Maddison), Loftus-Cheek, Sessegnon (Rose), Richarlison, Lincoln*, Elyounoussi

    This is possibly the best result we have got in this save. Away from home, against a big tycoon club, and it was vital that we didn’t lose if we wanted to qualify for the Europa League and the team performed amazingly. The early goal set us on our way and it was over not long into the 2nd half when we made it 3-0.

    Birmingham 2 (Richarlison 10, 58)

    Man Utd 3 (Lukaku 30, 64, Sanchez 42)

    Perin, Tarkowski, Holding, Gibson, Calabria, Lerma (Stoica), Loftus-Cheek, Sessegnon, Richarlison, Lincoln, Elyounoussi (Maddison)

    This was the come down from the Monaco game as Man Utd beat us in a really good game. It was a close game where we both led at different times but it was a poor mistake from Holding that gave Lukaku his 2nd goal and the 3 points.

    Italy

    Slovenia 2 (Sporar 49, Mevlja 88)

    Italy 4 (Kean 20, 66, Chiesa 50, Cutrone 65)

    Perin, Rugani (Bonifazi), Bonucci (Benassi), Bastoni, Zappacosta (Florenzi), Pellegrini (Jorginho), Gagliadini, Emerson (Spinazzola), Chiesa (Insigne), Cutrone, Kean*

    I gave a few different players a chance here including Kean who got 2 goals on his international debut. He is definitely trying to push into the squad and it will be a battle between him and Insigne to get into the squad.

    Sweden 0
    Italy 3 (Berardi 35, 88, Verratti 76)

    Donnarumma, Caldera, Bonucci, Rugani, Florenzi, Jorginho, Verratti, Spinazzola, Berardi*, Belotti, Chiesa

    This win guarantees our qualification from the group. A solid result against a poor opposition means we are into the semi-finals and have been drawn against France in that tie.

    Player of the Month
    Mattia Perin

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-mattia-perin_-overview-profile.png

    League Table


    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-english-premier-division_-overview-stages.png



  48. December

    Burnley 3 (Niederlechner 51, 67, Cork 61)
    Birmingham 4 (Holding 3, Maddison 7, Dunlop 77, Jota 90)

    Perin, Chambers, Holding, Smalling, Colin, Stoica, Miles, Rose, Jota, Maddison, Dunlop

    What a game. I played the back-up team and they made a lightning start to the game. Burnley had a 15 minute period where it looked like we had thrown it away only for youngster Dunlop to get an equaliser and for Jota to score a 90th minute header to win the game.

    Birmingham 5 (Lincoln 8, 67, 86, Richarlison 42, Chambers 53)
    AC Milan 1 (Kessie 61)

    Perin, Chambers, Tarkowski, Gibson, Calabria, Lerma (Stoica), Loftus-Cheek, Sessegnon (Rose), Richarlison, Lincoln*, Elyounoussi

    Forget what I said about the Monaco game, this is the greatest result I have seen in this save. Every time we attacked it looked as though we were going to score. This result means we actually qualify from the group. I didn’t expect us to have any chance of that but we amazingly were unbeaten at home with 2 draws and a win against 3 great teams.

    Birmingham 3 (Lincoln 40, 75, Richarlison 44)
    Liverpool 1 (Xadas 65)

    Perin, Chambers, Tarkowski, Gibson, Calabria, Lerma, Stoica, Loftus-Cheek, Sessegnon, Richarlison* (Jota), Lincoln, Elyounoussi

    A good win here with Lincoln adding 2 more goals onto his 3 against Milan. Liverpool have really collapsed since the start of the save and gone through 3 managers. Klopp, Eddie Howe and now Senol Gunes have been sacked by the club since the start of the game.

    Bournemouth 0
    Birmingham 2 (Lincoln 23, 59)

    Perin, Tarkowski (Smalling), Holding (Stoica), Gibson, Calabria, Lerma, Loftus-Cheek, Rose, Richarlison, Lincoln*, Maddison

    Lincoln delivers again as his two goals and MOTM performance give us the 3 points. He has really turned it on in the last few games and is looking like a top striker. I am expecting big clubs to come looking at him in January or in the summer.

    Birmingham 2 (Elyounoussi 30, Lincoln 47)
    Huddersfield 1 (Bertolacci 29)

    Perin, Tarkowski (Smalling), Holding, Gibson, Calabria, Lerma, Loftus-Cheek (Maddison), Sessegnon, Richarlison (Jota), Lincoln, Elyounoussi*

    We were a bit more lucky here as Huddersfield were a good challenge. They are on a good run of form but a lot of that has come from having Nuno Marques on loan from us so I was hoping they would not play as well but they were unlucky to not get any points here.

    Crystal Palace 1 (Riedewald 90)
    Birmingham 4 (Lincoln 12, 14, 26, Richarlison 79)

    Perin, Tarkowski, Holding, Gibson, Calabria, Lerma, Loftus-Cheek, Sessegnon, Richarlison, Lincoln*, Elyounoussi

    It is definitely the Lincoln show at the moment. He delivers his second hat trick of the month here in the first 30 minutes of the game. I was very disappointed to not a get clean sheet here as Palace scored in the very last minute of the game.

    Tottenham 2 (Jovetic 51, Sabitzer 83)

    Birmingham 1 (Lincoln 6)

    Perin, Tarkowski, Holding, Gibson (Chambers), Calabria, Lerma, Loftus-Cheek (Maddison), Sessegnon, Richarlison (Jota), Lincoln, Elyounoussi

    It wasn’t to be here as Tottenham turned in on in the second half to win the game. We just couldn’t match them here as fatigue caught up with us. This was the boxing day fixture and we have another game in 2 days so there will be a lot of rotation for that game.

    West Ham 1 (Felipe 13)

    Birmingham 3 (Jota 6, Barnes 59, 85)

    Perin, Chambers, Norris, Smalling, Colin, Stoica, Miles, Rose, Jota, Barnes*, Maddison (Dunlop)

    A really good win here from what is the back-up team. Amazingly, all 4 goals were very similar as they were all headers at the far post. With Lincoln’s form, Barnes hasn’t had much game time but it is good to see he can deliver when called on.

    Player of the Month
    Lincoln

    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-lincoln_-overview-profile.png

    League Table


    Keep Right On - A Birmingham City Story-english-premier-division_-overview-stages.png


  49. I have to say that I have fallen out of love with this save. I wasn't expecting success to come so quickly and the lack of a challenge to it has lead me to not really feel motivated to continue with this story. I may come back to it later on but it is unlikely.

  50. Quote Originally Posted by bcfc1 View Post
    I have to say that I have fallen out of love with this save. I wasn't expecting success to come so quickly and the lack of a challenge to it has lead me to not really feel motivated to continue with this story. I may come back to it later on but it is unlikely.
    This is why I love a journeyman save. Because it takes years and years to 'crack it'. Even if you have really early success, it is at such a low level and with no qualifications etc....you only work your way up! And every time you go to a new club, it's almost like starting a new save all over again! Give it a go mate, you won't look back!

+ Reply to Thread
Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Content Relevant URLs by vBSEO