skip to content
Foul by Barry Bannan on Cameron Jerome, free kick awarded. Sebastian Larsson crosses the ball, Header by Nikola Zigic from deep inside the penalty area misses to the left of the target.
Effort from inside the area by Ashley Young misses to the right of the goal.
Shot by Ashley Young from inside the penalty area bounces off the post.
Headed effort from inside the area by Ciaran Clark misses to the left of the goal.
Header from close in by Ciaran Clark misses to the left of the target.
The ball is swung over by Stewart Downing, clearance by Roger Johnson.
(Aston Villa) makes a substitution, with John Carew coming on for Nigel Reo-Coker.
Outswinging corner taken from the right by-line by Sebastian Larsson, Headed effort from deep inside the area by Nikola Zigic misses to the left of the goal.
Barry Bannan takes a shot. Save by Ben Foster.
Caution for Nigel Reo-Coker. Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Nigel Reo-Coker by Craig Gardner. Free kick taken by Stephen Warnock.
The offside flag is raised against Emile Heskey. Free kick taken by Ben Foster.
The ball is sent over by Stewart Downing.
Emile Heskey takes a shot. Save made by Ben Foster.
Scott Dann is cautioned. Cameron Jerome joins the action as a substitute, replacing Alexander Hleb. The ball is crossed by Luke Young,
Corner taken right-footed by Ashley Young, Header on goal by James Collins from inside the box goes harmlessly over the target.
Alexander Hleb fouled by Ciaran Clark, the ref awards a free kick. Barry Ferguson takes the free kick.
The ball is delivered by Ashley Young, Craig Gardner makes a clearance.
Nikola Zigic takes a shot. Save by Brad Friedel.
Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Sebastian Larsson by Luke Young. Direct free kick taken by Scott Dann.
Stewart Downing produces a cross, clearance made by Sebastian Larsson.
Stephen Carr delivers the ball, save made by Brad Friedel.
Nigel Reo-Coker challenges Roger Johnson unfairly and gives away a free kick. Ben Foster takes the direct free kick.
Barry Bannan comes on in place of Steve Sidwell.
Stephen Warnock crosses the ball, Headed effort on goal by Emile Heskey from inside the penalty box misses to the right of the target.
Stephen Carr gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Ashley Young. Ashley Young takes the direct free kick.
Nigel Reo-Coker takes a shot. Save by Ben Foster.
The ball is swung over by Ashley Young, clearance by Keith Fahey.
Luke Young challenges Craig Gardner unfairly and gives away a free kick. Free kick crossed by Sebastian Larsson, Richard Dunne manages to make a clearance.
Craig Gardner takes a shot. Brad Friedel makes a save.
The ball is crossed by Liam Ridgewell, Richard Dunne makes a clearance.
Free kick awarded for a foul by Emile Heskey on Roger Johnson. Barry Ferguson takes the direct free kick.
Ashley Young fouled by Barry Ferguson, the ref awards a free kick. Ashley Young restarts play with the free kick.
Corner from the left by-line taken by Sebastian Larsson, save by Brad Friedel.
The referee cautions Stephen Warnock for unsporting behaviour. Free kick awarded for a foul by Stephen Warnock on Alexander Hleb. Sebastian Larsson crosses the ball from the free kick right-footed from right wing, Stephen Warnock gets a block in.
Keith Fahey takes a shot. Brad Friedel makes a save.
Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Stewart Downing by Liam Ridgewell. James Collins restarts play with the free kick.
The ball is delivered by Sebastian Larsson, clearance by Ashley Young.
Foul by Ciaran Clark on Alexander Hleb, free kick awarded. Barry Ferguson restarts play with the free kick.
The referee blows for offside against Emile Heskey. Ben Foster takes the free kick.
Nikola Zigic is cautioned by the ref for unsporting behaviour. Nikola Zigic gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on James Collins. Direct free kick taken by James Collins.
Headed effort from inside the area by Liam Ridgewell misses to the left of the goal.
The ball is swung over by Sebastian Larsson, clearance made by Stephen Warnock.
Sebastian Larsson takes a outswinging corner.
Emile Heskey handles the ball and concedes a free kick. Direct free kick taken by Ben Foster.
Long distance shot from Keith Fahey misses to the left of the goal.
Sebastian Larsson produces a cross, clearance by Steve Sidwell.
Sebastian Larsson sends in a cross, James Collins makes a clearance.
Keith Fahey takes a shot. Save by Brad Friedel.
The ball is swung over by Liam Ridgewell, save by Brad Friedel.
Foul by Steve Sidwell on Barry Ferguson, free kick awarded. Barry Ferguson restarts play with the free kick.
Liam Ridgewell gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Ashley Young. The free kick is swung in right-footed by Stewart Downing, Ben Foster makes a save.
Nikola Zigic challenges James Collins unfairly and gives away a free kick. Direct free kick taken by James Collins.
The ball is swung over by Ashley Young, clearance by Stephen Carr.
Scott Dann gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Emile Heskey. James Collins takes the direct free kick.
Sebastian Larsson fouled by Ashley Young, the ref awards a free kick. Ben Foster restarts play with the free kick.
Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Craig Gardner by Steve Sidwell. Free kick taken by Sebastian Larsson.
Keith Fahey takes a shot. Save made by Brad Friedel.
The official flags Emile Heskey offside. Ben Foster takes the free kick.
Foul by Emile Heskey on Scott Dann, free kick awarded. Ben Foster takes the free kick.
Craig Gardner is shown a yellow card for unsporting behaviour. Craig Gardner gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Nigel Reo-Coker. Free kick taken by James Collins.
Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Ciaran Clark by Roger Johnson. Direct free kick taken by Brad Friedel.
Free kick awarded for a foul by Emile Heskey on Stephen Carr. Direct free kick taken by Barry Ferguson.
Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Richard Dunne by Nikola Zigic. Brad Friedel takes the free kick.
Corner taken by Sebastian Larsson.
Centre by Keith Fahey, clearance by Richard Dunne.
Craig Gardner takes a shot. Blocked by James Collins.
Craig Gardner takes a shot. Craig Gardner gets a block in.
Craig Gardner takes a shot. Richard Dunne gets a block in.
The ball is delivered by Stewart Downing, Roger Johnson makes a clearance.
Stewart Downing delivers the ball, Scott Dann manages to make a clearance.
The match gets underway.
The half-time whistle blows.
The second half begins.
The referee ends the match.
Warnock can make derby date
Aston Villa left-back Stephen Warnock will return after suspension for the Sunday's Barclays Premier League derby with Birmingham at Villa Park.
The former Liverpool player was banned for the midweek Carling Cup win over Burnley after incurring five bookings.
Striker Gabriel Agbonlahor (groin), captain Stiliyan Petrov (knee) and defender Luke Young (hamstring) are injured and midfielder Marc Albrighton is banned but boss Gerard Houllier hopes striker John Carew will have recovered from the bout of flu which ruled him out against the Clarets.
Villa defender Richard Dunne believes the team "who wants it most" will triumph on Sunday.
Dunne made his Villa debut in the clash between the two rivals at St Andrew's last season along with James Collins and Warnock.
Villa won that encounter 1-0 and the return meeting by the same scoreline as Birmingham tempers frayed over after losing to a controversial penalty.
Stephen Carr was given a one-game ban for gestures towards Villa fans while Roger Johnson was fined #5,000 for criticising the match officials.
Dunne, who played in many Manchester derbies when with City, knows what is stake in the noon battle.
The Republic of Ireland defender said: "Derbies are always the same. They are high-intensity games and there always seems to be a lot of pressure in them.
"There is maybe not a lot of great football but plenty of high intensity and a lot of tackles.
"I think it's the team who wants it most tends to come out on top. It's not always the quality that shines through.
"We have to know that that whoever goes out there for us has to match Birmingham's effort and commitment towards the game."
Dunne relished helping Villa to defeat their rivals on his debut and has been a rock-solid performer since making the #6million switch from Eastlands 15 months ago.
He said: "Being away in a derby is a really good place to make your debut. There was three of us on the day and the result went for us.
"The atmosphere in the ground was really good and, likewise, when we played back at Villa Park the atmosphere was brilliant.
"I think that's what the lads will be looking forward to the most on Sunday.
"It's a really big game for both clubs and I think we would both prefer to be higher up the league than we are.
"The three points are very important for both of us."
Birmingham playmaker Alexander Hleb has been declared fit.
The on-loan Barcelona player suffered a knee injury during last Saturday's 2-0 home success over Blackpool but is named in Alex McLeish's squad.
Midfielder Michel has shaken off a kick on the shin suffered against Brentford in the midweek Carling Cup tie but Cameron Jerome (ankle), Jean Beausejour (knee) and James McFadden (knee) are long-term absentees.
Craig Gardner believes Birmingham have the potential to become the leading club in the city.
Gardner has warned his former club Villa they should be looking over their shoulder after the upturn in fortunes of Blues under McLeish.
The midfielder left Villa in January to join his boyhood heroes after becoming frustrated at the lack of first-team opportunities under then manager Martin O'Neill.
He is relishing playing regular football and is Birmingham's leading scorer this season with four goals.
Gardner told Press Association Sport: "We're the underdogs at the minute. Villa have been the top team for the last few years.
"Now we're moving up the table and doing well every week. Last season we finished really high and we're looking to improve on that.
"Villa are looking over their shoulders now, and so they should be. There is the potential to become the city's top team. I'd like Villa to be underdogs and Blues to be above them. Time will tell won't it?.
"But it would be amazing if we did finish above them this year because then we could give them six or seven years of stick all in one year.
"They're a top-class team. We're not going there thinking we'll walk over them because they've got players missing.
"We know it's going to be a tough game and we're going to get in their faces and make it hard for them. We'll run our socks off for 90 minutes and hopefully get the points."
Stalemate at Villa Park
Birmingham were on the wrong end of more penalty controversy as they earned a share of the spoils in a goalless clash at Aston Villa.
Alex McLeish's side had been beaten by a controversial spot-kick in the corresponding fixture last season.
This time Villa skipper Nigel Reo-Coker appeared to control the ball with his arm inside the box just before half-time - but the visitors' penalty appeals were rejected by referee Howard Webb.
Birmingham had the consolation of ending a run of six successive defeats against their local rivals.
But this was a game lacking in quality and will not remain long in the memory.
The midfield was overcrowded with both sides only employing one out and out striker in Emile Heskey and Nikola Zigic
Villa seemed to rely mainly on trying to find Heskey with a direct approach and Ashley Young was a peripheral figure for long periods.
They finished the stronger of the two teams but have now gone three league games without a goal and it would have been harsh on Birmingham to end up with nothing.
Sebastian Larsson and Stephen Carr got forward to good effect down the right flank for City but Zigic failed to make an impression.
Former England Under-20 skipper Ciaran Clark operated in an unaccustomed midfield role just in front of the Villa back four.
Villa were the first to settle and a shortish back pass from Liam Ridgewell left Ben Foster having to react quickly to clear from from Heskey.
But the first half chance fell to Craig Gardner whose first time shot in the box was goal-bound but blocked by Villa defender James Collins.
Villa looked the more composed on the ball in the early stages.
A skidding pass into the box from Ashley Young only just eluded the run of Heskey as it ran through to Foster.
Gardner became the first player to be yellow carded by Webb after 12 minutes for a lunge at Reo-Coker who reacted angrily.
Villa keeper Brad Friedel got his body behind a curling shot from Keith Fahey from the edge of the box.
Foster was relieved when his clearance was charged down by Heskey and flew out of play for a goal-kick after another under-hit back pass from Ridgewell.
Fahey managed to bring down a deep cross from Larsson although his overhead kick was comfortably deal with by Friedel.
Birmingham had strong appeals for a penalty rejected after 38 minutes when the ball appeared to hit the lower arm of Reo-Coker but they were waved away by Webb.
Zigic became the second City player to be yellow carded a minute later after he caught Collins when leading with his arm.
Friedel had to be alert to gather a low 25 yard drive from Gardner which gathered pace as it zipped off the surface.
It was 56 minutes before Foster made his first meaningful save of the game, parrying away a low dipping attempt by Reo-Coker from outside the box.
Houllier made his first change after 58 minutes with Steve Sidwell replaced by Barry Bannan.
Collins made a superb block at full stretch to block a shot from Gardner. At the other end Roger Johnson got in a crucial challenge on Heskey.
Blues defender Scott Dann was booked for bringing down Clark. Then Reo-Coker was yellow carded after appearing to kick out at Gardner after being fouled.
Foster parried away a Bannan drive after good play by Heskey.
Clark headed just wide after substitute John Carew had turned the ball back across the box and he needed treatment after being caught by Foster.
Ashley Young clipped the outside of a post with a rising drive as Villa searched in vain for a winner but Zigic could have won the game when he headed wide from Larsson's free-kick.
© 2004 - 2015 football.co.uk