‘We tried to liven things up’ - John Eustace’s honest verdict as Birmingham City lose yet again

Birmingham City manager John Eustace spoke to the media at St Andrew’s after his side lost 2-1 to Preston North End in the Championship.
Watch more of our videos on Shots! 
and live on Freeview channel 276
Visit Shots! now

Birmingham City manager John Eustace admitted ‘there are no excuses’ after his side fell to yet another defeat, against Preston North End on Saturday afternoon. Blues lost their fifth successive Sky Bet Championship match, even after Eustace ‘tried to freshen things up’ with a switch to a four-man defence.

The home side were sloppy to concede two early goals, the first being the best of the double as Ryan Ledson swept home a scuffed Hannibal Mejbri clearance with a clinical first-time effort on the edge of the penalty area. Preston doubled their lead from a corner soon after as unmarked captain Alan Browne glanced a header into the side netting.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Blues grabbed a goal back late on through substitute Lukas Jutkiewicz - and Jordan Graham had a big opportunity to equalise in stoppage time - but it was too little too late as Birmingham were lacklustre for much of the afternoon. A fair chunk of the supporters, some of whom had been protesting about the lack of takeover at the football club, booed out of frustration both at the interval and at full-time.

Quizzed about the ongoing situation off the field, Eustace said post-match: “All I can concentrate on is the football side. The most important thing for me is that I make this team a proud team to come and watch. Whatever’s happening off the field, I can appreciate the fans’ views and their feelings but the most important thing for me is that I can prepare a team that is ready to make them proud.

“Today we changed the shape, we tried to liven things up, freshening it up with a couple of new players coming in. It didn’t go very well because we lost the game. At the end of the day, it doesn’t matter what shape you play - if you haven’t got that togetherness and that fighting spirit that we’re just missing a little bit at the moment, you’re going to have trouble.

“The manner we conceded the goals was very soft. We had a number of chances to clear the ball, we weren’t putting heads on it and we weren’t picking up from the set piece. The most important thing now is these players roll their sleeves up and fight for the cause and for each other. This is a long Championship season,” Eustace continued.

Blues never really got going as they lost 2-1 to Preston North End.Blues never really got going as they lost 2-1 to Preston North End.
Blues never really got going as they lost 2-1 to Preston North End.
Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Blues will be relieved to have a week or two free from Championship action, but they have another tough test to come next Saturday as they go away to Blackburn Rovers in the FA Cup Fourth Round. Their next league fixture is the following weekend, away at Swansea City.

Related topics:

Comment Guidelines

National World encourages reader discussion on our stories. User feedback, insights and back-and-forth exchanges add a rich layer of context to reporting. Please review our Community Guidelines before commenting.