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INTERVIEW: Mark Robins Birmingham City Reaction

The Sky Blues were held to a goalless draw in the fourth round tie...

25 January 2020

Mark Robins was “proud” of his Sky Blues team after they were held to a goalless draw by Birmingham City in the fourth round of the Emirates FA Cup at St Andrew’s on Saturday afternoon.

In a game of few chances, it was the Sky Blues who carved out the better openings and were unlucky not to progress to the fifth round despite taking on a side playing in the division above them.

The draw means the two teams will meet in a replay in just over a week’s time and Robins was pleased with the way the Sky Blues performed in front of a sold-out St Andrew’s.

Robins said: “Absolutely, we’re slightly disappointed not to have got the winner, I’m certainly proud of them, we grew in confidence in the game, we started off by testing the temperature of the water a little bit, which is understandable.

“They’re a good side, a team from a higher division, it’s a strange set of circumstances as everybody has alluded to this week, we acquitted ourselves really well and can be really disappointed that we didn’t progress through with the chance we had at the end which was gilt-edged.

“We have to do it all again, we’ve put a lot of work into that, my attention now turns to Tuesday night and the recovery for that, but today’s game was a great effort, a clean sheet again, and a decent performance against a good Championship team.”

Robins was pleased with how his side limited their opponents in the final third as well as showing quality on the ball in a closely fought match.

“In the first half, even then, they were limited to just one chance, they’ve got some really good quality players who made us work hard and you can see there was a difference but we grew in confidence and the confidence meant that we were able to perform to a good level.

“In the second half I thought we were good, they started off brightly and pinned us in for a couple of minutes until we could a foothold which we did.

“Chances were few and far between all game but there was some good quality from us as well which I was pleased with, and that was the big thing for me, seeing us perform against a good side from a higher division and seeing how we fared.”

The introduction of both Callum O’Hare and Max Biamou from the bench opened up a tight affair with O’Hare having a big chance to win the tie in the final moments.

“You’ve got a set of players where it just wasn’t quite right today, Godders was isolated a little bit on his own and the changes opened the game up, but the stage of the game allowed that to happen and we were really unfortunate.

“Callum has been dreaming about that all week, he was disappointed not to be starting the game although he had a bit of a knock on Thursday and really, we should be talking about his goal and a lot of other different things.”

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