Stoke City beaten by more hungry Birmingham

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Birmingham (1) 2 Stoke City 0 10/4/21 3pm

Stoke may have started lively, but Birmingham wanted it more. The Potters’ season is fading away…just like their defence. Here’s how the game unfolded in real time:

The Potters have fought their way through the snow to get to the milder climate of St Andrews to face a Brum side desperate for points to avoid relegation. 6 games left and this is Stoke’s 2nd most difficult against new manager Lee Bowyer and a side that has the same form as them in the last 5 games (2 wins, 2 defeats, 1 draw). Stoke may be unchanged, but James McClean disappears from the subs bench after “aggravating” his old injury after playing for Ireland (which Michael O’Neill is still grumbling about). This one will roll and roll. Arm-bands worn for the Duke Of Edinburgh.
5.50 Fletcher does his standard throwing his weight around, much to Marc Roberts’ grief. He has a presence that Sam Vokes can only dream of.
8.51 Batth reminding us that he can’t dribble. Mikel comes back to clear the decks.
18.45 Fletcher brilliantly burst forward to reach a Mikel through ball, but the linesman sees an offside that didn’t look kosher. Too good to be true.
21.35 Thompson tries another excellent through ball. Apart from the long balls from Harry, that seems to be the best way to move Stoke forward.
23.50 Norrington-Davies turfs off a defender, who flounders on the ground, but the ref is unimpressed and gives a foul. MON & Norrington are suitably unimpressed with the ref.
25.10 Unmarked Leko’s header hits the bar. Thankfully he’s offside, but a hopeless miss in reality.
27.20 Fletcher robs the cocky defender, Brown crosses, Fletcher scores…offside called! Really?? Fletcher still hobbling…
30.52 Chester bursts forward like he’s some sort of midfielder, and is tumbled over. Free kick is woeful. Rain cascading down.
41.07 0-1 ! Roberts allowed to cross from Stoke’s left, and so obviously Lucas Jutkiewicz’s header couldn’t miss, as it nestles in the corner past Davies. Marking suspect. Another free header.
44.15 Fletcher booked for a frustrated tackle. Pressure on.
HT Brum 1 Stoke 0
52.22 0-2 !! Lukas Jutkiewicz latches on to a rebound off Davies to slot home easily. Stoke defence slipping.
55.00 Davies fluffs a clearance, and Stoke’s defence looks as fragile as the weather.
60.09 Awesome tackle by Harry Souttar, making full use of those longggg legs. But the rain is still pouring down on Stoke. Sam Vokes is even warming up!
66.59 Vokes and Norton on for Smith and Fletcher! What is this? 3-3-4??
71.20 Vokes caught way offside, almost comical.
72.30 Clucas on for Thompson.
73.08 Norton gets a deflected shot on target…more than we may see from Vokes…?
79.10 Powell penalised for handball, although he was more protecting his crown-jewels. Most interesting thing to say about Nick today is that his beard is developing nicely…
90.00 4 minutes of time added, and the heavens really open.
FT Brum 2 Stoke 0