BORE DRAW: Blues goal drought goes on against Huddersfield
PA - Mike Egerton
Birmingham’s goal drought goes on but Lee Bowyer’s side ended a run of three defeats with a battling 0-0 draw at Sky Bet Championship high flyers Huddersfield.
City have now failed to score in six successive matches but defended stoutly to deny the Terriers a third win in four games.
However, Huddersfield nearly snatched victory with substitute Fraizer Campbell hitting the woodwork twice after his introduction as a 75th-minute substitute.
His first near-miss struck Matija Sarkic’s left upright while his second attempt from 20 yards rattled the keeper’s right post in stoppage time.
Town’s point, at least, moved them into the top six while Bowyer’s side are 19th, four points off the relegation zone
Danny Ward forced Sarkic into a fingertip save after just 25 seconds but a raised flag for offside denied Town the corner.
It was the prelude to a frustrating night for Town, unbeaten by the Blues at the John Smith’s Stadium since 2014.
The Terriers dominated possession but only briefly threatened to make the breakthrough in the opening 45 minutes.
Danel Sinani went closest after 26 minutes but his curling left-foot shot from 20 yards was pushed aside by acrobatic Sarkic.
Ward was inches away from connecting with a cross from the speedy and dangerous Duane Holmes but otherwise Birmingham’s defence remained untroubled.
Huddersfield, looking to extend their unbeaten run to four games, did not have things all their own way.
Had a pass from Lukas Jutkiewicz been in front rather than behind him, Australian Riley McGree might have slid in a 19th-minute opener.
Defender Levi Colwill’s foul on George Friend brought Town’s Chelsea loanee a booking, his sixth yellow card in 11 appearances this season.
Birmingham threatened again and keeper Lee Nicholls did well to smother McGree’s deflected shot at his near post.
The second half followed a predictably similar pattern to the first with Town bossing the ball, trying to find a moment of quality or inspiration to break the stalemate.
Lewis O’Brien almost delivered it but his 56th-minute right foot attempt just missed the target.
McGree’s industry fashioned a back post, half-chance for Tahith Chong but the Manchester United loanee’s control was poor.
Blues made the game’s first substitution, taking off captain Jutkiewicz for fans favourite Troy Deeney after 69 minutes. Deeney was the last Blues player to score 543 minutes previously.
Town responded minutes later taking off Sinani and introducing Josh Koroma.
The contest badly needed a spark and Campbell almost provided it after replacing Ward.
Sorba Thomas’ run and cross were the catalysts only for Campbell’s eventual shot on the turn to be deflected onto an upright and away for a corner.
Birmingham responded and Gary Gardner headed fractionally wide from Jordan Graham’s inviting right-wing centre. Campbell almost had the last say but the post came to Birmingham’s rescue.
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