Today was going to be FA Cup Final day but it may not take place until August. Singing Abide with me is one of the traditions of the day and some fans plan to honour that by singing it at 5.30 pm today, the time the game should have started. They have set up a Just Giving page, to give money for NHS/Keyworker families decimated by losing a loved to the dreadful C-19 disease. This page also has a video of these fans singing a socially distanced version of the song.
I experienced a range of emotions at the FA Cup game with Leicester. I was sad that we conceded a goal and lost the game; I never like losing. I was proud of our players and the effort they put in. I was also proud of the support from the Birmingham City fans, who supplied all the noise in the stadium. I was glad that I’d gone to the game.
I’ve just updated my list of current Birmingham City players. The differences in the squad lists on the back of the programmes for Birmingham City’s fourth round FA Cup game and the replay prompted me to do this. In Tuesday’s programme, David Stockdale, Agus Medina, Alvaro Gimenez, David Davis and Odin Bailey were dropped from the list on the back of the first programme. Moha Ramos, Scott Hogan, Caolan Boyd-Munce, Ryan Burke, Ryan Stirk, and Jack Concannon were added.
As the BBC website said in its report: “In front of a paltry St Andrew’s crowd of just 2,697 on a foul night, Coventry set up a first meeting with Birmingham since beating them 3-2 in the League Cup at the Ricoh Arena in August 2012.” And we’ll be playing as the away team in our own stadium. I went to the game and enjoyed it. I find watching football much less stressful when I have an interest in a game but no deep emotional attachment. I wanted Coventry to win so that Blues could play away at St Andrew’s but if Coventry had lost, I wouldn’t have felt as distressed as I do when Blues lose.
My expectations before a game affect how I react to what happens. I went to the Wigan game expecting Blues to win so their poor performance and loss left me feeling depressed. I went to the FA Cup game thinking we needed to win to restore some confidence in our players but not at all confident that we would.
News of Birmingham City’s accounts broke on Friday, when they were filed at Companies House. It was not good news. The club lost £37,461,303 for the financial year. Read Daniel’s analysis on almajir.net if you want the details. This confirmed that I’d chosen the right picture for my mood indicator picture, with half indicating my happiness with the performance of manager and team and the other half showing my uncertainty over our financial situation.
The FA Cup replay this evening is a big game for SolihullMoors and Blackpool. Some of the magic of the Cup may have departed for the bigger teams but it is still there in the early rounds when teams compete toget through to the third round and a chance to play a big club. TheMoors and Blackpool are competing for a chance to play Arsenal.
Solihull Moors FC has a great slogan: Moor than eleven. Every successful football team has more than eleven involved in that success. Yesterday evening, the Moors earned a replay against a team from higher in the pyramid. That was achieved by players, coaches, other staff and fans too. It was also one of the more exciting no-score draws I’ve watched. Continue reading
On Saturday, I went to the cup game fearing that Blues would get hammered. Their poor second half against Brentford had left me thinking that our players just couldn’t manage to play a whole game in the style that Zola wants them to play. Continue reading
I enjoyed watching Birmingham City play Bournemouth in the FA Cup. Both sets of players played as though they wanted to win and it felt like a proper cup game. There was a good atmosphere, created by the enthusiastic support from both sets of fans. Though I think the Bournemouth fan who took his shirt off may have supported too enthusiastically and regretted it later. Continue reading
It was the thought of standing on the Wembley pitch that made me want to be part of the Fans Choir for the FA Cup Final. And it was an amazing experience to stand on that turf but not the best part. For me, the most enjoyable and memorable experience was meeting the other fans and the way so many strangers quickly became friends. Continue reading
I have no complaints about Birmingham City’s position in the table with no relegation battle or promotion hopes to add significance to the final few games of the season. Playing for a win that won’t affect our position in the table is not as exciting as trying to avoid the drop but is still worth doing. I always want Birmingham City to win and I hope the players feel that way too. It certainly looked as though they wanted to get a result on Tuesday evening when they came from behind twice to get the draw. Continue reading
I’m looking forward to Birmingham City’s cup game against West Bromwich Albion tomorrow. It’s close to a sell-out and it’s been a long time since that happened at St Andrews. It should produce a good atmosphere and, if all the seats around me are filled, it will feel a little warmer than it does when the winter wind whistles through the gaps left by empty seats. Continue reading
My first experience of watching a football game on TV was not a happy one. It was the FA Cup Final in 1956, when Birmingham City was beaten by Manchester City. I’d seen Birmingham City lose before, of course, but it felt totally different and much worse than watching a defeat as part of a crowd. We didn’t have a TV at home so we watched it at Grandma’s house and that didn’t help. At home I could have moaned but that wouldn’t have seemed polite at her house. I had to put on a happy face and thank her for letting us come and watch our hopes being demolished. Watching the TV coverage of the World Cup in 1966 was a much happier experience. But I have always preferred being in the crowd to watching on TV. Continue reading
It felt strange that Birmingham City didn’t have a cup game this weekend. It felt even stranger to be the only one of the local teams in the Fourth Round draw and to get there without kicking a ball in the Third Round. But there we were and we found out that Birmingham City or Bristol Rovers or Crawley Town will play Swansea City. Continue reading