Manchester United's Sir Alex Ferguson rues injuries Rio Ferdinand and Jonny Evans
Wayne Rooney's first-half goal to secure the three points. Ferguson said: "Wayne is off to a flying start and he took his goal well. His initial header was a good one, but he reacted the right way by following up for the rebound. With his goal in the Community Shield last week, hopefully he is on the road to getting a significant total for us this season. "He is capable of getting more than 20 goals for us. We know it's not impossible for the boy and hopefully he will do that." Birmingham manager Alex McLeish claimed he was heartened by the performance of his promoted team against the champions. "Sometimes even a narrow defeat can enhance confidence, strange as it may seem. I am very encouraged by the way we played." McLeish said. "You always worry that, if you come here and try to frustrate them and lose an early goal, Plan A is out of the window. But the players deserve enormous credit for hanging in there." United substitute Michael Owen should have made it 2-0 in stoppage time when, after beating the offside trap, he shot straight at goalkeeper Joe Hart, but Ferguson expects the former England forward to score his first competitive goal for United quickly. He said: "The goalkeeper made a great save from Michael. But I'm sure he'll get his goal and, once he does, it will set him on the road."