September 24th 2010
The Blues are slowly establishing themselves as a genuine mid table team, although they need to beat Wigan in order to break away from the bottom three. The Latics have slipped back to the relegation zone having lost at home to City and things are not looking good for Roberto Martinez’s side.
Birmingham’s performances have hardly been impressive this term, but they have still managed to pick up six points from five games and are now situated in mid table. The Blues were unable to build on the good results against Bolton and Liverpool as they succumbed to the derby defeat at the Hawthornes, although the players managed to restore some of the lost confidence thanks to the Carling Cup win over MK Dons. New signings Hleb, Beausejour, Jiranek and Zigic all showed signs of potential in that game, giving Alex McLeish much food for thought before the Wigan game. While the side that started the WBA game is unlikely to undergo big changes, the gaffer will at least have some very good options on the bench and it is this strength in depth that could prove very helpful come latter stages of the season. Apart from Michel and McFadden, McLeish will have full squad to choose from.
Even the best of teams would struggle to recover from starting the season with two home defeats and the 0:10 goal difference, but Wigan have reacted pretty well to the horrific start of the league campaign. The Latics picked up four points from next two league games, although they were a bit lucky in doing so, before losing another home game, this time to Manchester City. While Roberto Martinez’s side have seen some changes over the summer, we are not impressed by their dealings in transfer window as they have mostly signed players with little or no Premiership experience and that looks to be the main reason behind their struggles. On top of everything, Roberto Martinez faces a real selection headache with Caldwell and Cleverly out with injuries, while Di Santo, Stam and Thomas are all injury doubts.
Birmingham’s home form has seen them beat Blackburn and outplay Liverpool at St Andrew’s, so they’ve got to be considered favourites against out of form Wigan side. The new signings are slowly settling in, adding a new quality to the side, so Birmingham to win looks like one of the best football predictions of the weekend.
Verdict: Home win Birmingham (1)
Best Odds: 5/6
Bookmaker: Victor Chandler
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