Birmingham City 1 - 0 Leeds United

Match info: Championship at St Andrews Stadium

Date: 20/04/2013 KO: 15:00 Ref: S Hooper Att: 17,666

Home team/scorers Scores Away team/scorers

Birmingham

Hayden Mullins 71

1
vs
0

Leeds


FT (ht: 0-0)

  • Last Updated: April 20 2013, 19:56 BST

Post-match reaction to Birmingham's 1-0 victory over Leeds.

Lee Clark: Thrilled with Mullins contribution
Lee Clark: Thrilled with Mullins contribution

Birmingham manager Lee Clark has hailed veteran Blues midfielder Hayden Mullins for his impact following his performance in the 1-0 win over Leeds.

Clark had every reason to be pleased with his revitalised Birmingham side as they moved into 10th place - their highest since last September.

It was only Birmingham's third home victory of the year and they were indebted to Mullins, who scored his second goal of the season on his return to the side after missing the last 19 games.

Clark paid credit to the 34-year-old who made his 550th league appearance.

The Blues manager said: "I plumped for experience on this occasion.

"I thought that the way Leeds were playing with a new manager I just wanted an older head to look after the likes of (Ross) McCormack and he did it well.

"I didn't include Hayden to be the match winner but it was a good occasion to celebrate his 550th game.

"It was a terrific win so far as I am concerned I'm delighted with the three points and a clean sheet.

"We played really well in the first half although we became a little sloppy at the start of the second period. But we then got the goal and kicked on from there and in the last ten minutes we had further chances to kill off the game.

"The youngsters in the side have given me a huge boost but the frustrating thing for me is that if we had not messed around in the early part of the season and got three positive results they could have taken us into the play-off spots.

"Ultimately I had to give the players who did so well last season an opportunity to repeat the feat. For whatever reason it could not be repeated and I had to go down the route of using the younger players just before Christmas."

Following two successive wins under new boss Brian McDermott, Leeds came back down to earth with another away defeat.

The goalless first half had been indicative of the respective positions of both clubs.

Ravel Morrison clipped the crossbar for Birmingham and also went close with another attempt, while Luke Varney and McCormack were the two danger men for Leeds.

Birmingham's youngsters again demonstrated their potential and in particular on loan Morrison. He worked well in tandem with Nathan Redmond and the pair were often troublesome for the Leeds defence.

Goalkeeper Jack Butland, making his penultimate home appearance before linking up with Stoke City, had several anxious moments.

He saved well from McCormack but was very nearly caught napping in the second half by Varney when he was far too casual taking a cross.

The stalemate was broken in the 72nd minute when Paddy Kenny failed to hold on to a Redmond strike.

Kenny could only parry the shot and Mullins was on hand to knock the ball home from close range.

Despite the defeat, McDermott is still feeling optimistic about the future at Elland Road.

He said: "I thought we should have got something out of the game. When it was 0-0

we were on top and then they scored from nothing.

"When I arrived at the club I put my reputation on the line and to make sure Leeds remained in this division. So far as I am concerned it is job done.

"Everyone must be going in the same direction. If that occurs in this club you have a major chance.

"I think we have to talk about who needs to come in. If we can add to the squad with good quality players who know this division we should progress.

"Leeds were possibly in trouble when I came in. I am delighted with the boys. They played two games at home and we won them both. They were pressure games."


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