Bristol City scored three goals at St Andrews to worsen Birmingham City’s relegation woes, as Nigel Pearson’s side not only won their third away game in a row but scored three goals once more.
Kasey Palmer put the Robins ahead after half an hour excellently driving towards Neil Etheridge’s goal before slotting past the helpless Blues number one.
Goals in the second half from Antoine Semenyo and substitute Callum O’Dowda secured the three points and give Birmingham their 12th home defeat of the season.
This takes Pearson’s Robins up to 12th in the Championship, but probably still out of contention for the play-off places and leaves Birmingham one place outside of the relegation zone.
There were a few welcome inclusions for Bristol City with Liam Walsh, Callum O’Dowda and Marley Watkins all making their returns to the substitutes bench after injuries.
There was no Adam Nagy or Zak Vyner for the Reds, both still unavailable after suffering concussions in the loss to QPR last Saturday and giving the opportunity for Han-Noah Massengo to impress.
Diedhiou missed an early volley from outside the box, a complete mishit that travelled way above Ethridge’s bar and wide of his post.
Scott Hogan had the closest attack for Aitor Karanka’s side, striking the bar with a header from inside the box that he would’ve hoped to score from.
Palmer made the miss from Hogan even more sour, picking up the ball just inside the opposing half and powerfully running to the edge of the box to place the ball past the keeper into the bottom right corner.
Both sides managed to force a couple of shots before the end of the half, but both defences successfully blocked to keep the score at 1-0 heading into the break.
Just after the 60-minute mark Semenyo doubled the away side’s advantage, pressing Etheridge and forcing him to direct his clearance towards the onrushing striker which deflected into the back of the net.
O’Dowda was first of the injured contingent to find his way onto the field, the first appearance since boxing day for the Republic of Ireland international.
Less than a minute after entering the game O’Dowda latched onto a superb Palmer through ball to find the back of the net with his right foot and first genuine touch.
There were first appearances this campaign for both Walsh and Watkins as they replaced Henri Lansbury and Diedhiou respectively, with the Robins aiming to see out the game.
This was the Robins fifteenth win of the season, leaving them on 48 points as they still have only drawn three of their 36 games so far leaving 13 points off of sixth place.
Birmingham sit 21st and just outside the relegation places but that’s mainly because that the side occupying the 22nd place is Rotherham who have played four games less than Karanka’s side.
Pearson’s side next play Blackburn Rovers on Wednesday, March 17 at Ewood Park with Birmingham facing reading at home on the same evening.
featured image credit bcfc.co.uk