Blackburn Rovers 1 - 1 Birmingham City

Match info: Championship at Ewood Park

Date: 10/11/2012 KO: 15:00 Ref: M Naylor Att: 14,919

Home team/scorers Scores Away team/scorers

Blackburn

Ruben Rochina 13 (pen)

1
vs
1

Birmingham

Marlon King 17

FT (ht: 1-1)

  • Last Updated: November 10 2012, 19:35 GMT

Manager Henning Berg praised the Blackburn fans for their support despite his side surrendering a lead to draw 1-1 with Birmingham.

Henning Berg was keen to praise the Blackburn fans
Henning Berg was keen to praise the Blackburn fans

The Norwegian's first home game in charge ended all square, despite Ruben Rochina giving Blackburn a deserved early lead after 13 minutes with a coolly taken penalty after Mauro Formica was fouled.

Despite being under pressure for the early stages, Birmingham hit back almost instantly when Marlon King pounced after a Nikola Zigic shot hit a post to notch his second goal in as many games.

Berg was in good spirits after a stirring performance from his side, who have tasted victory twice in the past 10 games.

He said: "I was really happy with the welcome and as soon as the game starts you focus on the game but you can hear the fans and it's good to hear them get behind the team and that is encouraging for the team, that is what we need and it is a shame we couldn't give them the result they would have liked."

Rovers are yet to win under Berg but came flying out of the traps, seeing two goalbound efforts cleared when destined for goal, one in either half and Berg felt his side were unlucky not to win.

"I thought we deserved to win," he said.

"We were at times excellent, at times OK, at times could be better but we are looking to extend those good periods even longer but at our best we caused them lots of problems."

Birmingham boss Lee Clark described Jack Butland as a top goalkeeper after an impressive display helped secure the point, stretching City's unbeaten away record to three games.

He said: "He can be anything he wants. He is improving all the time. In the last few weeks he's looked what he is - top quality and a future international goalkeeper."

Despite Birmingham failing to win at Ewood Park in 19 attempts, Clark was pleased with the latest effort, describing the penalty as a wake-up call to his side.

He said: "We started the first half quite average and I'm glad the penalty happened when it did because give us a bit of a wake-up call.

"We showed great character when it's easy to buckle and finished the first half on the front foot and maybe could have gone in at half-time in front, and we started second half well.

"We defended well as a group and towards the end we had some good situations where we could have nicked it."

Rovers started at a frenetic pace and went close when Danny Murphy played a delightful ball for Jordan Rhodes who rounded the onrushing Butland and was only thwarted by a fantastic challenge from Steven Caldwell.

Rochina dragged wide following good work from the Olsson brothers and this fast start was rewarded from the spot.

Formica was felled by David Murphy when crossing and Rochina stepped up to calmly send Butland the wrong way with his first goal for almost two months.

They were well on top but out of nowhere, Birmingham drew level four minutes later.

Chris Burke's cross ricocheted off Scott Dann straight into the path of Zigic who could only strike the post from six yards but King was on hand to poke into the empty net for his fifth goal in as many games.

Birmingham's makeshift centre back Paul Robinson saved a certain goal early in the second half, getting back on the line to head away a looping header from Rhodes who had got on the end of a wonderful Martin Olsson cross.

With 20 minutes remaining, City's highly-rated goalkeeper came to his side's rescue by tipping away Formica's rasping drive that was destined for the top-left corner.

For Birmingham, Burke's swerving shot forced Blackburn's Paul Robinson into a save late on and both sides had to settle for a point.


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