Goals, or the lack of them, have proved to be the real problem for Blues this season. We’ve found the net just four times in the league, and only one of that measly total has come at St Andrew’s.
Matt Green, who scored nearly sixty goals for his previous club Mansfield over two seasons, has a solitary goal to his name. Although, he hasn’t really been getting the game time. A man who certainly has however, Lee Novak, hasn’t managed to find the net all season, and to be honest doesn’t look like doing so. Nikola Zigic has been injured since July and Lee Clark has been trying to offload Peter Lovenkrands for a number of months and thus the Dane has played just twice.
Attacking midfielder Andy Shinnie, a free-transfer from Inverness, has been forced to play in a number of positions including upfront, and does actually have a goal to his name albeit in a cup tie at Yeovil. Talisman Chris Burke could be relied upon more than ever and the Scot, who is generally regarded as the best player we have at the club, has scored pretty regularly for Blues over the two previous seasons he’s spent at St Andrew’s.
Marlon King has undoubtedly been a big loss for Blues. The Jamaican was the top goalscorer for the last two seasons and no-one has scored as many as he did in so few appearances for many years at St Andrew’s. The striker has since moved onto Sheffield United after being released as we could not afford his wages and has left a hole in the team Lee Clark has, understandably, yet to fill.
With Birmingham languishing around the relegation places, someone really needs to step up and score the goals to keep us safe. Nikola Zigic should return next week and could have a massive part to play in the large remainder of the campaign. The Serb scored a fantastic volley for the U21’s on Monday and has a knack of scoring important goals at important goals for Blues. New boy Jesse Lingard, signed on loan from Manchester United, has arrived with a reputation of being able to score goals. He could make the difference for Lee Clark’s struggling side and although he’s only been signed on a month’s loan, if it’s a successful one the deal could be extended. The England youngster will go straight into the squad for the visit of Sheffield Wednesday tomorrow.
We desperately need to find goals from somewhere, whether it be Zigic, Lingard, Green or Burke. If we don’t, then a relegation scrap is looming.
Written by Shane Ireland, We Are Going Up’s Birmingham City blogger
Shane tweets at @_ShaneIreland