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Rovers 3 Birmingham 0


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Rovers: Friedel, Emerton, Samba, Ooijer, Olsson (Warnock 78), Dunn, Mokoena, Tugay, Bentley, Roberts (Santa Cruz 54), Derbyshire (Rigters 83).

Subs Not Used: Brown, Khizanishvili.

Goals: Bentley 66, Derbyshire 82 pen, Santa Cruz 90.

Birmingham: Kingson (Doyle 45), Parnaby, Martin Taylor, Jaidi (Schmitz 56), Sadler, De Ridder (Palacios 82), Danns, Johnson, Vine, Forssell, O'Connor.

Subs Not Used: Pearce, Howland.

Booked: Jaidi.

Att: 9,205.

Ref: Mike Riley (Yorkshire).


Match Report by Colin

Eventually it was a very good result. It was back to brass monkey weather at Ewood which didn't help - I'll be brushing the mothballs off the thermals and the hat for the Larissa game.

As already mentioned it was an unusual lineup with a normal back four; Tugay & The Axe playing in front of them; Bentley in front of those two with Dunn on the left & Matt on the right and then Roberts on his own up fromt.

The first half seemed to be a bit of a non-event. OK, it was played mostly in the Darwen End half & I always struggle to see properly. There didn't seem to be many attempts at goal worthy of a standing up session and a "wooooh!"

The injury to Kingson, the Brum keeper seemed horrible. He went for a cross at the back post, presumably smacked his head against the goal post and was KO-ed. After 5 minutes of treatment he was hauled back on his feet and within 5 seconds he collapsed like a bag of spuds. I hope he's OK.

Second half looked a lot better.

Roberts missed a 1 on 1 with the keeper when he really should have scored, but he knackered himself and shot wide.

Bentley's goal was a belter, it went straight at me. Thank goodness for the net. It must have been from all 25 metres. Brilliant strike.

The penalty was pretty clear-cut, no complaints from the Brum players as RSC was pretty clearly blocked by a defender's arm after turning him inside out in the box. (Was it RSC? I thought it was. The brother thought it was Matty?)

Matt took a really precise penalty just inside the keepers RH post that he had no chance of saving.

Dunn made a great run from the left wing, cutting inside about three defenders but ended up finishing with a weak shot that the keeper was able to save quite easilly. If he had finished it off with a goal it would have been a magnificent effort. Looks like the pie-boy is getting his act together. Looking a bit thinner too.

RSC added the third not too long before full time with a close range header from a deflected Bert cross. No complaints, he had to be there to score it and he did the job for his first goal at Ewood.

A decent result against an under-strength Brum side who never really looked a threat. Brad didn't really have to make a save all night.

MOTM to Dunn semed OK, although both Bentley and Samba had really good games. I'm getting to appreciate Samba more and more each time I see him. It's not just the way that opposition professional footballers bounce off him like they have hit a brick wall, but he does really have the skills.

Finally, just a word about Tugay: the sooner he plays a game dressed in a smoking jacket & cravat with a glass of port in one hand & cocktail cigarette in the other the better. He was football's Noel Coward tonight. He was one cool dude. I don't think he broke into a sweat.

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