Birmingham City v Blackpool: Lee Clark return will give edge - Rowett

Blackpool boss Lee Clark shakes hands with his Gary Rowett, his successor as Birmingham City manager, prior to the Tangerines' 1-0 win at Bloomfield Road in December
As well as being Rowett's first defeat as Blues boss, Blackpool's 1-0 win in December was Lee Clark's first win

Birmingham City manager Gary Rowett has warned his team to be wary of a wounded Blackpool side when former Blues boss Lee Clark returns to St Andrew's on Wednesday night.

Having struggled all season after a disrupted summer, bottom club Blackpool are now 15 points adrift.

And they are at risk of relegation from the Championship by the end of March.

But 40-year-old Rowett warned: "These games have a strange edge to them. Almost anything can happen."

He told BBC WM 95.6: "When a team's fighting, if you don't match that fight, you'll come unstuck."

Blackpool have already proved that to Blues once this season by winning 1-0 at Bloomfield Road in December.

Tangerine nightmare on the road
Blackpool gained a point from last month's local derby at Blackburn but, that excepted, their last three trips out of Lancashire have cost them 15 goals in three games - more than half the 28 conceded on the road all season

It was Rowett's first defeat after succeeding the sacked Clark at St Andrew's in late October - and he is keen not to suffer a repeat.

"I'm sure Lee coming back to his former club will make him desperate to win the game and do the double over us," said Rowett, whose team won for the first time in 10 games when they beat Brentford on Saturday.

"But what we need to do is focus on what was a decent performance against Brentford.

"At Bloomfield Road, we diverted from what we'd been doing during the week. But this is a game we should be fired up for. We don't want to be the team they get another win from."

Blackpool celebrate Steven Davies's winning goal against Birmingham City at Bloomfield Road, December 2014
Steven Davies struck the only goal of the game when Blackpool beat Birmingham 1-0 at Bloomfield Road

Blackpool have managed three home wins under Clark, all by a single goal, having also beaten Brighton and Millwall.

They are yet win on the road this season, having managed six draws in 17 matches, but Rowett insisted: "They've shown how dangerous they are. People should not assume that we're just going to turn up and see them soundly beaten."

Meanwhile, Blues have added a player to their current matchday squad by activating the 24-hour recall provision in midfielder Charlee Adams' loan at Conference side Lincoln City.

The 20-year-old was scheduled to remain with the Imps until the end of the season, but has returned to Birmingham after scoring twice, both of them spectacular long-range strikes, in 14 appearances.

"I don't really like to take a player away from a team at this stage," said Rowett. "But we all look at what we think is best for the player.

"We've apologised to Lincoln but we just felt, for his development, he's going to be better off for the last couple of months back here."

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