Birmingham City 1 DONCASTER ROVERS 1
Tuesday, 3rd December 2013 at St Andrews, Birmingham
Skybet League championship
Referee – Mr Brendan Malone
Attendance – 12,633 (317 visitors)
A cold evening, with a touch of frost awaited the Rovers at St Andrews for the game against Birmingham City, who were one place and one point below the Rovers.
Rovers were unchanged from Saturday but Birmingham made one change, forward Aaron McLean coming in for midfielder Shane Ferguson, who dropped to the bench.
Rovers defended the Tilton Road end where their supporters were situated.
For the first ten minutes Rovers were pushed back on defence but suffered no alarms.
In the 12th minute they broke the shackles with a good move down the right ending with Coppinger firing over the bar from just outside the penalty area.
Then a free kick to the home team on their right to the far post was headed goalwards but was deflected for a corner.
The 19th minute brought a corner to the Rovers followed by another but nothing came from them.
Minutes later and a free kick to the Rovers from a central position was headed out to Coppinger on the edge of the penalty area but his fierce drive was blocked and cleared.
At the other end Novak from a good distance lifted the ball goalwards trying to catch Turnbull out but the keeper tipped it over the bar.
Then Turnbull was in action again a couple of minutes later when McLean cut in from the left, with the keeper spreading himself and deflecting the shot wide with his leg. From the corner McLean headed wide.
The pressure told in the 29th minute when a cross from the home left reached NOVAK unmarked past the far post and from 12 yards he rifled the ball into the near top corner.
Just past the half hour and the Rovers won a corner, which was cleared.
Keeping the pressure on good work in the middle of the pitch by Furman in the 32nd minute led to him giving to Duffy, who took the ball on and, making space for himself, he hit a rasper from the edge of the area that Randolph managed to tip over the bar.
In the rundown to the break, the home team continued to have the better of the play, with Lingard firing wide, Novak shooting over and Zigic heading a cross well wide.
Half Time – Birmingham City 1 Doncaster Rovers 0
Rovers made a change at the start of the second half, Martin Woods replacing Richie Wellens, who must have picked up an injury.
Rovers got the second half underway and showed their attacking intentions by spending time in their opponent’s half.
Just before the hour Furman put wide from 25yards and past the hour Robinson won the ball in midfield and played Macheda in on goal but his shot was blocked by Randolph and cleared.
Past the hour and Cotterill put over a good cross from the right to the far post but Macheda headed wide under challenge.
In the 68th minute, a cross from Rovers left by Stevens was scrambled out of the home defence to Furman whose shot was blocked by a mass of bodies in the penalty area.
A free kick to the home side minutes later by Burke from the right touchline was was met by Burn with a good header but Turnbull made the save.
Straight to the other end and Robinson on the Rovers right put inside to Furman who fired high over the bar.
At last the rovers got the break they had worked for COTTERILL, in the inside left position, about 30yards out hit a tremendous drive as only he can into the far corner of the net for an equaliser.
In the 82nd minute, Adeyemi got into the six-yard box from the right but his shot was blocked at the post by Turnbull.
Then good defensive work by Rovers led to a break by Macheda on the left. He squared for Paynter but he fired high and wide from 25 yards.
In the 85th minute, Adeyemi had another half chance from six yards but again the Rovers defence blocked his path at the expense of a corner.
Five minutes of added time said the referee but they were safely negotiated by Rovers, who thus gained a hard earned point.
Result – Birmingham City 1 (Novak 29) Doncaster Rovers 1 (Cotterill 77)
Teams – Birmingham City – Darren Rudolph; Paul Caddis, Dan Burn, Paul Robinson ©, Mitch Hancox; Tom Adeyemi, Callum Reilly, Lee Novak, Jesse Lingard; Aaron McLean, Nikola Zigic
Subs used – Chris Burke for McLean 68 mins; Wade Elliott for Reilly 78 mins; Andy Shinnie for Lingard 85 mins;
Subs not used – Olly Lee, Shane Ferguson, Dariusz Dudka, Colin Doyle gk
ROVERS – Ross Turnbull; Paul Quinn, Bongani Khumalo, Luke McCullough, Enda Stevens; James Coppinger, Richie Wellens ©, Dean Furman, Mark Duffy; Federico Macheda, Theo Robinson
Subs used – Martin Woods for Wellens 46 mins; David Cotterill for Coppinger 58 mins; Billy Paynter for Duffy 70 mins;
Subs not used – Liam Wakefield, Marc De Val, Alex Peterson, Jon Maxted gk