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Match Preview: Birmingham City v Sunderland - all you need to know ahead of kick-off!

We’re back on the road following disappointment on home soil at the weekend as we travel to the West Midlands to take on Birmingham City - here’s all the build-up ahead of kick-off.

Photo by James Gill - Danehouse/Getty Images

Friday 11th November 2022

(10th) Birmingham City v Sunderland (17th)

Championship

St. Andrews

Kick-Off: 20:00


Tickets & Match Coverage

Tickets: Tickets sold out.

TV/Stream: Full live match coverage is available via Sky Sports.

Radio: Full live match commentary available via BBC Radio Newcastle (not online)

Don’t forget to follow the blow-by-blow account of the game on the Roker Report Twitter feed (@RokerReport) and check out the player ratings after the full-time whistle at www.RokerReport.com!


The build-up...

For multiple reasons I’m never keen on a visit to St. Andrews and on-the-pitch, we haven’t had a great time of things over recent years, with our last league win coming back in September 1997 when Micky Gray scored the only goal of the game. There was also our 3-0 win in the League Cup second round back in August 2014 to potentially raise the anticipation levels for our trip to the West Midlands.

We’re going into the game on the back of a run of one win in five games but, on the flip-side, we boast the fifth-best away record in the division, with only two sides having scored more on the road so far this season.

Along with the rest of us, Tony Mowbray will be looking for a reaction from the side following our home defeat to Cardiff at the weekend, but it’s another tough trip to take on a side currently trying to keep pace with the top six.

Huddersfield Town v Sunderland - Sky Bet Championship
Tony Mowbray
Photo by John Early/Getty Images

This is Birmingham’s twelfth successive season in the Championship and John Eustace is their twelfth permanent manager since relegation back in 2011. Other than the first season back in the second tier when they finished 4th, it’s been a bit of a struggle - with their highest position over the last six seasons being 17th.

John Eustace took over from Lee Bowyer in the summer and as we approach the halfway point of the season, it appears to be a solid start. Currently sitting 10th in the table and three points off the top six the Blues are currently looking up the table rather than over their shoulder.

Their home form is solid so far with five draws from the ten so far and only two defeats. They are also unbeaten in six on home soil which makes it their longest unbeaten home run since August 2019. In midweek, they avoided a third home defeat with a last-minute goal from Troy Deeney that salvaged a 2-2 against Swansea City.

It’s also likely we’ll see Dion Sanderson in action against the Lads tonight as he’s in the middle of his second loan spell at St. Andrews.

Birmingham City v Swansea City - Sky Bet Championship
John Eustace - Head Coach of Birmingham City
Photo by Cameron Smith/Getty Images

The betting...

The bookies have the home side as favourites tonight at 11/8 for the win, with the Lads priced at 2/1 to pick up all three points and the draw is 11/5.


Head to head... at St. Andrews

(All competitions)

  • Sunderland wins: 16
  • Draws: 14
  • Birmingham City wins: 30
  • Sunderland goals: 66
  • Birmingham City goals: 88

Last time we met... at St. Andrews

Tuesday 30th January 2018

Sky Bet Championship

Birmingham City 3 - 1 Sunderland

[Davis 28’, Boga 44’, Gallagher 54’ — Oviedo 83’]

Sunderland: Ruiter, Matthews, Browning, Kone, Clarke-Salter (McGeady), Oviedo, Cattermole, Robson, Honeyman, Asoro (Gooch), Maja (Lua-Lua) Substitutes not used: Steele, Love, Galloway, Williams

Birmingham City: Stockdale, Colin, Grounds, N’Doye, Roberts, Dean, Maghoma (Jota), Kieftenbeld, Gallagher (Jutkiewicz), Davis (Adams), Boga Substitutes not used: Trueman, Morrison, Lowe, Gardner

Attendance: 19,601

Birmingham City v Sunderland - Sky Bet Championship
Chris Coleman faces the cameras the last time we met at St. Andrews
Photo by Ian Horrocks/Sunderland AFC via Getty Images

Played for both...

Kenny Cunningham

Cunningham started out at Millwall, making his debut in 1990 and after establishing himself at The Den, he moved to Wimbledon in a deal that also saw Jon Goodman make the same move.

After six years with the Crazy Gang, the Republic of Ireland international joined Birmingham City in 2002, where he spent four years until Roy Keane brought him to Wearside in 2006. After only a handful of appearances, Cunningham suffered a series of injuries that led to retirement at the end of his first season with the Lads.

Soccer - Coca-Cola Football League Championship - Sunderland v Birmingham City - Stadium of Light
Kenny Cunningham
Photo by Nigel French - PA Images via Getty Images

Seb Larsson

After starting out at Arsenal, Larsson signed for Birmingham City back in 2006 looking for first-team football. Four years and around 200 appearances later, Steve Bruce swooped to bring the Swedish international to the Stadium of Light on a free transfer.

Larsson spent six years with the Lads and made 203 appearances scoring 16 goals before joining Hull City in 2017 and returning to Sweden with AIK in 2018.

West Bromwich Albion v Sunderland - Premier League
Seb Larsson
Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images

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