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Birmingham v Manchester United live

28 Dec 2010 22:08:05

Birmingham v Manchester United live

Follow Sportsmail's live coverage of the day's final Premier League game, where Birmingham host Manchester United. Sir Alex Ferguson will hope his side can continue their unbeaten record at the top of the table but face a Birmingham side that have fresh legs following their Boxing Day postponement. Email me all your thoughts on the match at dan.ripley@dailymail.co.uk  Birmingham 1-1 Manchester United (8pm)Birmingham: Foster, Carr, Johnson,Dann, Ridgewell, Larsson (Hleb 70), Ferguson, Gardner, Bowyer, Beausejour (Zigic 82),Jerome (Phillips 85). Subs: Taylor, Derbyshire, Fahey, Jiranek. Goals: Bowyer 89. Man Utd: Van der Sar, Rafael Da Silva, Ferdinand, Vidic, Evra, Gibson (Hernandez 90),Carrick, Anderson (Fletcher 73), Giggs, Berbatov, Rooney. Subs: Kuszczak, Neville, Evans, Obertan, Macheda. Goals: Berbatov 58. Referee: Lee Mason (Lancashire) 22.00: So Wigan drop into the bottom three but they have a chance to climb out of the drop zone when they host Arsenal tomorrow. Speaking of which, Chelsea also host Bolton and Wolves will attempt to come off the bottom when they lost Liverpool in the last set of fixtures for the year. That's all from me for now but check back tomorrow for Sportmail's final coverage of the Premier League for 2010. Before I go be sure to follow Tom Bellwood's Ashes coverage against Asutralia on this site as England look set to retain the famous urn, good night to you all. 21.59: For Birmingham they climb out the relegation zone and sit 16th in the table, McLeish will be delighted with the way his team (eventually) fought back. 21.58: But what frustration for United who had done well to carve out an opening and hold it for so long. They go back top but only just, ahead of Manchester City on goal difference. 21.55: Frantic end to the game and it's time to point out Giggs was booked in protest over that Bowyer goal. Full-time: Birmingham 1-1 Manchester United 90+5min: Final spell of pressure from United, but Carrick's final cross is weak and Birmingham clear their lines, that should be that. 90+3min: Momentum fully with City, they look the more likely to win this now having been nowhere for almost this entire second half. 90min: Javier Hernandez is on for Gibson and there will be four minutes of added time. Late on the scene: Lee Bowyer scores a dramatic equaliser for Birmingham 89min: GOAL! BIRMINGHAM 1-1 Manchester United Incredible, City pump the ball in the box and Zigic seems to handle the ball into the path of Lee Bowyer at the near post, who makes no mistake from two yards. Bowler may even be offside, slight hint of controversy there. 88min: Carr finds a gap down the right but his desperation to get a cross in shows as it just loops over everyone in the box before rolling out to safety. 87min; To City's credit they are starting to give this more of a go but as they commit men forward, they are leaving big gaps for United to counter. 85min: Final throw of the dice from McLeish as he brings on Kevin Phillips for Jerome. 84min: Time to let you know that Nikola Zigic is on for Beausejour. Long ball time. 83min: Nearly game, set and match for United, Vidic towers high to header powerfully at goal but fortunately for Foster it's straight at him and he can tip the ball over. 82min: Penalty shout for Birmingham, Hleb goes down after the most minimalist of touches from Rafael and Lee Mason makes a good call to let play go on. I wonder where Hleb learned to go down like that? 79min: Temperature has gone up a notch, after Giggs ploughs into Bowyer, he wins the ball but it looks two footed, and the City crowd voice their opinions, loudly. 76min: Brilliant awareness from Rooney who resists the urge to shoot through a crowd of players to lay the ball across the box that Gibson slices powerfully wide. 75min: For a team sitting in the bottom three and a goal down at home, City are not giving this their best shot. United look the more likely to score here. 73min: United also make a change with Anderson coming off for Darren Fletcher. 70min: First change from Birmingham, Larsson is replaced by Alexander Hleb. 68min: Unlucky from Anderson, another slick passing move from United ends with Brazilian slicing a 25 yard shot wide. 66min: Berbatov especially has taken it up a notch, he is playing with much more confidence and it's rubbing off on his team mates as United knock the ball about happy to keep possession. Touch of class: Berbatov fires Manchester United ahead 63min: No response from the home side, if anything United are playing with more freedom. 60min: That is nearly his second, surrounded by City players on the edge of the box, the Bulgarian threads in a shot that clips off the post and goes wide. There is no doubting Berbatov is a genuine match winner. 58min: GOAL! Birmingham 0-1 MANCHESTER UNITED Cannot say it's been coming but this is class. Dimitar Berbatov plays a clever flick to Gibson who after scampering down the right plays back in the Bulgarian in the box who smashes past Foster's near post. Sublime. 57min: In come the rugby tactics. Ben Foster clears a spell of United pressure by booting the ball to the corner flag at the other end of the pitch. City squeeze forward seizing the chance to relive the pressure. 55min: United win two successive corners but  I have been keeping an eye on Rooney and he looks far from happy. He heads a difficult chance over but he cuts a frustrated figure on the St Andrews turf. Frustration: Rooney struggled to make an impact in the first hour 53min: That is a great chance, United are asleep for the short corner, which results in Gardner firing straight at Van der Sar from 10 yards out. If he gets better contact on his volley that was an almost certain goal. 51min: That's slightly naught from Beausejour, Rafael plays a give and go pass but as the full-back attempts to bomb down the win, the Birmingham midfielder raises his arm to block him off. Rafael goes down but nothing is given,Beausejour could not have complained if he was booked there. 48min: Slow tempo resumes, United seeing more of the ball but are not doing much with it. Same pattern as the first-half so far. Second-half: Players are back out, United get us going again. 20.59: The best chance has been that Giggs' cross/shot that Foster did very well to keep out. You kind of sense both sides will be happy with a point. 20.55: I'll be honest, I was debating whether to venture to the nearest window and watch some grass grow as that half wore on. Both sides are trying in fairness, but the defences have not been made to work hard enough. Half-time: Birmingham 0-0 Manchester United 45min: Two minutes of injury time. 44min: As we approach half-time this game needs a shot in the arm, this is going nowhere. 42min: Good effort from Gardner. Larsson's cross from the right finds Bowyer who lays it back for the midfielder who blasts over. Move of the match so far. 40min: United breach the City defence for the first time, but Giggs' through ball for Berbatov is just too strong for the Bulagarian as Foster shepherds the ball out for a goal kick. 37min: Craig Gardner flashes a shot across Edwin van der Sar's goal but the Dutchman never looked uncomfortable during the effort, defences well on top. Lucky boy: Vidic (right) was booked for bringing down Jerome 34min: City dominating this spell but little Rafael is standing his ground and more against his taller opponents. City are strangely losing the aerial battle against the full-back. 31min: Nemanja Vidic does the only thing he can do and cops a booking himself. Jerome reads Jean Beausejour pass over the top much better and as he runs in on goal Vidic brings him down. Not quite a goalscoring opportunity and not that malicious so a booking is the right call. 29min: No complaints on this one though, Darron Gibson will have an imprint of Lee Bowyer's boot on his leg after the City players gets nowhere near the ball and Lee Mason books the City midfielder. 26min: Silly from Anderson, he gets impeded by Barry Ferguson but lashes out with his...chest prompting Craig Gardner to come and split the two up. The United player is booked for his over the top reaction, as is Gardner for acting as no more than a peacemaker. 23min: Wait here is another, Larsson lines up a free-kick to the left of the box but his attempted cross does not even beat the first man. Not good enough at this level. Heads up: Birmingham's Cameron Jerome (left) competes for the ball with Manchester United's Rio Ferdinand 22min: What a waste. City win a free-kick 20 yards out but Larsson blasts it quite a way over and a good chance goes begging. You fancy City's best chances are going to come from set-pieces and they do not come much more inviting than that. 18min: Where on earth did that come from!? For all of Giggs' magic not even he can claim he meant this. With his right foot, he attempts a cross that turns into a shot as Foster gets the slightest of touches with his out stretched hand to tip the ball onto the inside of the post and out to safety. 17min: It's now United with all the possession as Birmingham retreat into their own half, so far the home side have looked organised at the back. I cannot see more than two goals in this game. 14min: As this game still stutters along, time for a quick start from InfoStradaLive: ManU are unbeaten in their last 21 #EPL matches in the city of Birmingham, since their 3-1 defeat at Villa Park in 1995. And that prompted the infamous 'You'll never win anything with kids line'. 12min: He is getting closer, Rooney skips inside the box but under pressure from the City defence attempts to curl the shot in the opposite corner, it's on target but is easy meat for Foster. 11min: Very scrappy start, lots of minor fouls and no side can get any neat passing move going. 8min: A sighter from Wayne Rooney, he finds space to shoot 25 yards out but he flashes his effort just wide of the post, Ben Foster looked to have it covered though. 5min: Home side seeing plenty of the ball, but United seem content enough to let them play.  Slow start overall. 2min: First half-chance for City, Seb Larsson whips in a cross for Cameron Jerome but is put off enough by Rafael to send his header way over. He should do better of shrugging off the United full-back. Kick-off: City get us going. 19.59: Going back to 19.54 though, the omens do not look good for a City win. United are unbeaten this season and have never lost tor Birmingham in the Premier League. Hmmm. 19.57: No Michael Owen of course for United who despite being fit cannot even make the bench. He must be seeking first team football in January, he is still too good to be out a starting lineup let alone a squad. 19.54: From a neutral's perspective a Birmingham win would be a popular result. With Manchester City, Spurs and Arsenal all winning in the past couple of days, the title race would really hot up...and that's before we count Chelsea should they recover. Either way five teams in contention is a good thing for the Premier League. 19.51: United have been in awesome form over the past month, but they are going to have their work cut out at Birmingham. The Blues may sit in the relegation zone but at home they can be formidable opponents, just ask Chelsea who succumbed 1-0 at St Andrews recently. But then nobody is losing to Chelsea at the moment. 19.48: Birmingham boss Alex McLeish makes three changes for the home Barclays Premier League clash with second placed Manchester United. Left-back Liam Ridgewell, winger Jean Beausejour and midfielder Craig Gardner replace David Murphy, Keith Fahey and Nikola Zigic respectively. McLeish opts to revert to a 4-5-1 formation with Cameron Jerome the lone striker in City's first game since December 12. United boss Sir Alex Ferguson makes one enforced change from the side which defeated Sunderland on Boxing Day. Park Ji-Sung has departed to play for South Korea in the Asian Cup and is replaced by Darron Gibson. 19.45: Those noisy neighbors are getting louder in Manchester. Manchester City currently sit on top of the Premier League table but from Manchester United's point of view, they can resume normal service with a win at St Andrews. Team news from Birmingham: Birmingham v Man UtdBirmingham: Foster, Carr, Johnson, Dann, Ridgewell, Larsson, Ferguson, Gardner, Bowyer, Beausejour, Jerome. Subs: Taylor, Phillips, Derbyshire, Fahey, Zigic, Hleb, Jiranek.Man Utd: Van der Sar, Rafael Da Silva, Ferdinand, Vidic, Evra, Gibson, Carrick, Anderson, Giggs, Berbatov, Rooney. Subs: Kuszczak, Neville, Hernandez, Evans, Fletcher, Obertan, Macheda.Referee: Lee Mason (Lancashire) Drought: Wayne Rooney (left) will be hoping to score his first outfield goal for Manchester United since March  Birmingham keeper Foster has no regrets over leaving 'cut throat' UnitedCarrick convinced goals will come for in-form Man United midfielder AndersonALL BIRMINGHAM CITY FC


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