Championship
Birmingham1Reading2

Birmingham City 1-2 Reading

Captain Jobi McAnuff scored twice to move Reading into the play-off places and inflict more home woe on struggling Birmingham in the process.

McAnuff opened the scoring against the run of play, finding the bottom corner before the break after the hosts failed to clear a Royston Drenthe cross.

Birmingham quickly equalised through a Paul Caddis penalty after Callum Reilly was fouled by Kaspars Gorkss.

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Post-match: Birmingham boss Clark

But McAnuff converted Chris Gunter's low cross to secure a late win.

The victory ensured Reading capitalised on Nottingham Forest's heavy 5-0 defeat by Derby to leapfrog the Midlanders in the table and occupy the sixth and final play-off spot.

At the other end of the table, Birmingham are five points clear of the relegation zone and remain without a home win since October.

The Blues have now lost four of their last five games, with their last win a 2-1 victory at Blackpool on 22 February.

Birmingham began well, with Federico Macheda forcing Alex McCarthy into a reflex save. But after a promising period, the hosts fell behind.

Drenthe made inroads down the right for Reading before crossing into the box and when the home side failed to clear, McAnuff had time and space to hit the target.

Four minutes later, however, parity was restored as Gorkss was penalised for tripping Reilly inside the box. Referee Dean Whitestone pointed to the spot and Caddis levelled.

Birmingham were lively going forward and Macheda again went close, heading onto the crossbar.

But Reading were more clinical in front of goal and McAnuff struck at the far post eight minutes from time to earn his team a valuable win.

Birmingham manager Lee Clark:

"I feel really disappointed for the players because the one result that shouldn't have happened was a defeat for us.

"The minimum we should have got was a point. We played good stuff, we competed with a really good team and it's tough for the players to take.

"We have to regroup. There were a lot of positives to take from this but the lads are hurting and it's a quiet dressing room."

Reading manager Nigel Adkins:

"They were two excellent goals and, watching it back, two excellent footballing goals.

"I'm surprised [McAnuff] hasn't scored more and it's not as if he's not had chances but it's great that he's gone and scored them here and all being well he'll go on a nice run now.

"We wanted to win the division but great credit to Leicester and Burnley for what they've done so far this season. We're in the play-off race and it's a very exciting time in the season for everybody."

Line-ups

Birmingham

  • 1Randolph
  • 31Caddis
  • 17Reilly
  • 36HuwsSubstituted forBlackettat 29'minutes
  • 14Packwood
  • 4Robinson
  • 7C Burke
  • 23Spector
  • 9Macheda
  • 12NovakSubstituted forIbeat 45'minutesBooked at 71mins
  • 22ShinnieSubstituted forZigicat 76'minutes

Substitutes

  • 8Ibe
  • 11Lovenkrands
  • 13Doyle
  • 19Zigic
  • 20Lee
  • 35Rusnák
  • 37Blackett

Reading

  • 21McCarthy
  • 2Gunter
  • 37Obita
  • 20GuthrieBooked at 67mins
  • 5Pearce
  • 17Gorkss
  • 19Robson-KanuSubstituted forMcClearyat 55'minutes
  • 16Akpan
  • 9Le FondreSubstituted forPogrebnyakat 55'minutes
  • 10DrentheSubstituted forBlackmanat 87'minutes
  • 11McAnuff

Substitutes

  • 1Federici
  • 3Kelly
  • 7Pogrebnyak
  • 12McCleary
  • 22Blackman
  • 25Taylor
  • 35Hector
Referee:
Dean Whitestone
Attendance:
13,409

Match Stats

Home TeamBirminghamAway TeamReading
Possession
Home44%
Away56%
Shots
Home20
Away17
Shots on Target
Home6
Away4
Corners
Home8
Away2
Fouls
Home11
Away10

Live Text

Match ends, Birmingham City 1, Reading 2.

Full Time

Second Half ends, Birmingham City 1, Reading 2.
Foul by Garath McCleary (Reading).
Jordon Ibe (Birmingham City) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Nick Blackman (Reading) wins a free kick in the attacking half.
Foul by Callum Reilly (Birmingham City).
Corner, Birmingham City. Conceded by Kaspars Gorkss.
Attempt blocked. Chris Burke (Birmingham City) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Nikola Zigic.
Corner, Birmingham City. Conceded by Alex McCarthy.
Attempt saved. Nikola Zigic (Birmingham City) header from the centre of the box is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by Chris Burke with a cross.
Offside, Birmingham City. Darren Randolph tries a through ball, but Federico Macheda is caught offside.

Substitution

Substitution, Reading. Nick Blackman replaces Royston Drenthe.
Offside, Reading. Alex McCarthy tries a through ball, but Pavel Pogrebnyak is caught offside.

Goal!

Goal! Birmingham City 1, Reading 2. Jobi McAnuff (Reading) left footed shot from very close range to the high centre of the goal. Assisted by Chris Gunter following a fast break.
Attempt missed. Pavel Pogrebnyak (Reading) left footed shot from the centre of the box is too high.
Attempt saved. Chris Gunter (Reading) right footed shot from very close range is saved in the centre of the goal.
Attempt saved. Jobi McAnuff (Reading) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Danny Guthrie.
Attempt missed. Alex Pearce (Reading) header from the right side of the six yard box is close, but misses to the right. Assisted by Danny Guthrie with a cross following a set piece situation.
Royston Drenthe (Reading) wins a free kick in the attacking half.
Foul by Paul Robinson (Birmingham City).
Attempt missed. Jordon Ibe (Birmingham City) right footed shot from the left side of the box is high and wide to the right. Assisted by Nikola Zigic with a headed pass following a set piece situation.
Offside, Reading. Jordan Obita tries a through ball, but Pavel Pogrebnyak is caught offside.

Substitution

Substitution, Birmingham City. Nikola Zigic replaces Andrew Shinnie.
Attempt blocked. Federico Macheda (Birmingham City) left footed shot from the right side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Chris Burke.
Attempt blocked. Jordon Ibe (Birmingham City) right footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Paul Caddis.
Attempt missed. Jordan Obita (Reading) right footed shot from the centre of the box is close, but misses to the right. Assisted by Chris Gunter with a cross.
Pavel Pogrebnyak (Reading) wins a free kick in the attacking half.
Foul by Will Packwood (Birmingham City).

Booking

Jordon Ibe (Birmingham City) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.
Chris Gunter (Reading) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Foul by Jordon Ibe (Birmingham City).
Corner, Birmingham City. Conceded by Alex McCarthy.
Attempt saved. Chris Burke (Birmingham City) left footed shot from a difficult angle on the left is saved in the bottom left corner. Assisted by Jordon Ibe.
Attempt missed. Alex Pearce (Reading) header from the left side of the six yard box is close, but misses to the right. Assisted by Danny Guthrie with a cross following a corner.
Corner, Reading. Conceded by Darren Randolph.
Attempt blocked. Kaspars Gorkss (Reading) header from very close range is blocked. Assisted by Danny Guthrie with a cross.
Corner, Reading. Conceded by Paul Caddis.

Booking

Danny Guthrie (Reading) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.
Foul by Danny Guthrie (Reading).
Chris Burke (Birmingham City) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
goal

As It Stood

TeamPWDLGDPts
1Leicester3625653581
2Burnley37211333176
3Derby3719992266
4QPR3719991466
5Wigan36188101562
6Reading371611101659
7Nottm Forest3714158957
8Brighton36151110956
9Ipswich37141211654
10Blackburn36131112-150
11Bournemouth37131014-749
12Watford361212121048
13Leeds3613815-247
14Middlesbrough37101512445
15Sheff Wed37111214345
16Huddersfield3712817-444
17Bolton3791414-641
18Blackpool37101116-2041
19Doncaster37101017-2140
20Birmingham3791018-937
21Charlton3471116-1932
22Millwall3771119-3132
23Yeovil3771020-2231
24Barnsley3661119-3229
View full Championship table

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