Championship
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Birmingham City 0-0 Cardiff City

Frederic Gounongbe clashes with Birmingham City's Ryan Shotton
Cardiff's Frederic Gounongbe clashes with Birmingham City's Ryan Shotton

Birmingham and Cardiff fought out an entertaining goalless opening day stalemate in the sun in St Andrew's.

Cardiff should have been ahead at half-time but Frederic Gounongbe missed an open goal and Tomasz Kusczak saved brilliantly from Peter Whittingham.

After the break it was Bluebirds goalkeeper David Marshall's turn to shine with outstanding saves from Diego Fabbrini and Jack Storer.

When a goalkeeper was beaten, Cardiff's Lex Immers' shot crashed off the bar.

New Cardiff head coach Paul Trollope's side - including defender Fabio, who is being linked with Middlesbrough - started with a purpose.

And had it not been for former Manchester United player Kuszczak's brilliance and some sloppy finishing Cardiff would have been out of sight at the interval.

With takeover rumours dominating the build-up to the game, it took Gary Rowett's Blues 50 minutes to hit their stride.

When they did, Scotland international Marshall was equal to the task, although substitute Storer should have scored.

The pace slowed in the energy-sapping heat, and Immers' late effort almost stole all the points for Cardiff.

Birmingham City manager Gary Rowett told BBC WM:

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Rowett targets two signings for Blues

"It was probably the right result on the overall reflection of the game. I don't think we deserved to win but we didn't deserve to lose.

"To keep a clean sheet was a real positive and some strong displays from Ryan Shotton and Tomasz Kuszczak played leading roles.

"I admit that I am trying to bring in two players that will give us a bit more quality and win us games in the final third. We certainly need to improve in that area."

Cardiff City boss Paul Trollope:

"There is an influence from the Euros. Obviously a few teams used it in the Euros like the team I worked with. A lot of teams have used this system and got out of this division.

"With the players I have at my disposal at the moment I think it is a good way for us to go."

"We came with positive intentions to win the game but were frustrated we didn't win. We controlled good spells which was pleasing. We want to be progressive and dynamic but it is what happens in the box.

"The signs are good and we defended when we were put under pressure. It is, however, work in progress. Hopefully we will improve. A clean sheet on the road is not bad."

Line-ups

Birmingham

  • 29Kuszczak
  • 23Spector
  • 28Morrison
  • 5Shotton
  • 3Grounds
  • 8Gleeson
  • 26DavisBooked at 41minsSubstituted forTescheat 85'minutes
  • 11CotterillSubstituted forBrownat 71'minutes
  • 10FabbriniSubstituted forStorerat 70'minutes
  • 19Maghoma
  • 9Donaldson

Substitutes

  • 1Legzdins
  • 4Robinson
  • 7Tesche
  • 17Solomon-Otabor
  • 18Brown
  • 21Vaughan
  • 38Storer

Cardiff

  • 1Marshall
  • 2Peltier
  • 5Ecuele Manga
  • 16Connolly
  • 6Richards
  • 8RallsSubstituted forO'Keefeat 82'minutes
  • 7Whittingham
  • 12John
  • 13PilkingtonSubstituted forNooneat 82'minutes
  • 10Immers
  • 9GounongbeSubstituted forZohoreat 71'minutes

Substitutes

  • 4Morrison
  • 11Noone
  • 17Gunnarsson
  • 21Moore
  • 22O'Keefe
  • 26Zohore
  • 29Ajayi
Referee:
Tim Robinson
Attendance:
19,833

Match Stats

Home TeamBirminghamAway TeamCardiff
Possession
Home46%
Away54%
Shots
Home14
Away13
Shots on Target
Home3
Away5
Corners
Home5
Away5
Fouls
Home12
Away16

Live Text

Match ends, Birmingham City 0, Cardiff City 0.

Full Time

Second Half ends, Birmingham City 0, Cardiff City 0.

Attempt blocked. Jacques Maghoma (Birmingham City) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Jonathan Grounds.

Attempt blocked. Jonathan Grounds (Birmingham City) left footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked.

Foul by Bruno Ecuele Manga (Cardiff City).

Clayton Donaldson (Birmingham City) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Attempt missed. Lex Immers (Cardiff City) right footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the right following a corner.

Corner, Cardiff City. Conceded by Ryan Shotton.

Attempt saved. Craig Noone (Cardiff City) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom left corner. Assisted by Declan John.

Attempt missed. Craig Noone (Cardiff City) left footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the left. Assisted by Lex Immers.

Substitution

Substitution, Birmingham City. Robert Tesche replaces David Davis.

Peter Whittingham (Cardiff City) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Foul by Jack Storer (Birmingham City).

Substitution

Substitution, Cardiff City. Craig Noone replaces Anthony Pilkington.

Substitution

Substitution, Cardiff City. Stuart O'Keefe replaces Joe Ralls.

Attempt missed. David Davis (Birmingham City) left footed shot from outside the box is too high. Assisted by Stephen Gleeson.

Corner, Cardiff City. Conceded by David Davis.

Attempt missed. Anthony Pilkington (Cardiff City) right footed shot from the right side of the box misses to the left. Assisted by Kenneth Zohore.

Corner, Cardiff City. Conceded by Michael Morrison.

Foul by Kenneth Zohore (Cardiff City).

Michael Morrison (Birmingham City) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Attempt saved. Jack Storer (Birmingham City) right footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Reece Brown with a cross.

Attempt missed. Jack Storer (Birmingham City) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the right. Assisted by Jacques Maghoma.

Substitution

Substitution, Cardiff City. Kenneth Zohore replaces Frederic Gounongbe.

Substitution

Substitution, Birmingham City. Reece Brown replaces David Cotterill.

Substitution

Substitution, Birmingham City. Jack Storer replaces Diego Fabbrini.

Corner, Birmingham City. Conceded by Jazz Richards.

Attempt blocked. Jonathan Grounds (Birmingham City) header from the right side of the box is blocked. Assisted by David Cotterill with a cross.

Corner, Birmingham City. Conceded by Bruno Ecuele Manga.

Attempt saved. David Cotterill (Birmingham City) left footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by Jonathan Spector.

Bruno Ecuele Manga (Cardiff City) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Clayton Donaldson (Birmingham City).

Offside, Cardiff City. Lex Immers tries a through ball, but Frederic Gounongbe is caught offside.

Lex Immers (Cardiff City) hits the bar with a right footed shot from outside the box following a set piece situation.

Frederic Gounongbe (Cardiff City) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Jonathan Grounds (Birmingham City).

Attempt blocked. David Davis (Birmingham City) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

Foul by Matthew Connolly (Cardiff City).

Clayton Donaldson (Birmingham City) wins a free kick on the right wing.

Foul by Bruno Ecuele Manga (Cardiff City).

goal

As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Norwich11004133
2Ipswich11004223
3Nottm Forest11004313
4Bristol City11002113
5Huddersfield11002113
6Fulham11001013
7Reading11001013
8Rotherham10102201
9Wolves10102201
10Birmingham10100001
11Brighton10100001
12Cardiff10100001
13Derby10100001
14Aston Villa00000000
15Leeds00000000
16QPR00000000
17Sheff Wed00000000
18Burton100134-10
19Brentford100112-10
20Wigan100112-10
21Newcastle100101-10
22Preston100101-10
23Barnsley100124-20
24Blackburn100114-30
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