Championship
Bolton0Birmingham1

Bolton Wanderers 0-1 Birmingham City

Birmingham defender Paul Robinson
Paul Robinson's winner lifted Birmingham above Reading into second

Birmingham City moved into the Championship's automatic promotion spots as Paul Robinson's header kept his former club Bolton at the bottom.

Robinson had not scored a league goal for eight years before last weekend - but now has two in two games after converting Demarai Gray's free-kick.

He helped Blues clinch three points by clearing Gary Madine's close-range shot off the line after the break.

Bolton's first home defeat this season leaves them two points from safety.

Birmingham are four points behind leaders Brighton, who fought back to clinch a late 2-1 home win against Bristol City.

Robinson, 36, scored his first league goal since playing for West Brom in 2007 in Saturday's win at QPR and netted again as Gray's inswinging set-piece from the left flank evaded the home defence.

Wanderers dropped to the foot of the table following a 2-0 loss at Burnley on Saturday and manager Neil Lennon's response was to start ex-England striker Emile Heskey alongside Madine for the first time.

Heskey has only scored once for Bolton - on his debut on Boxing Day last year - but came close to doubling his tally when he almost connected with Jose Manuel Casado's free-kick.

Only some desperate Blues defending prevented Bolton equalising shortly after the restart, Robinson brilliantly hacking away Madine's effort, before skipper Michael Morrison blocked Darren Pratley's follow-up shot.

And Wanderers had few other opportunities as they were unable to score for a seventh time in 12 matches.

Bolton manager Neil Lennon:

"I think it's apparent there is a lack of quality at times; we're relying on players to improve and make the most of the opportunities that come their way.

"We'll have to bring someone in, we need to do something very quickly to make us better.

"I think there's goals in us. We're missing easy chances, there's nothing I can do about that. Again, it's composure. There's a lack of composure throughout the game at important moments. That's what makes the difference in games."

Birmingham manager Gary Rowett:

"We've started well but we've got to keep working and stay very, very humble.

"In this league, if you take your foot of the gas for a second it doesn't matter who you are or how hard you work, you'll come unstuck.

"I'm pleased at the moment, it's a good start and we're enjoying our football at the moment."

Line-ups

Bolton

  • 1Amos
  • 15Derik
  • 4DerviteBooked at 23mins
  • 31Wheater
  • 20CasadoBooked at 63mins
  • 7Feeney
  • 16Davies
  • 21PratleyBooked at 34minsSubstituted forDannsat 68'minutes
  • 22WellingtonBooked at 42minsSubstituted forClaytonat 43'minutes
  • 14Madine
  • 19HeskeySubstituted forWooleryat 76'minutes

Substitutes

  • 2Gouano
  • 6Vela
  • 12Clayton
  • 13Rachubka
  • 18Danns
  • 23Dobbie
  • 30Woolery

Birmingham

  • 29Kuszczak
  • 31CaddisBooked at 37mins
  • 28Morrison
  • 4RobinsonBooked at 72mins
  • 3GroundsBooked at 15mins
  • 8Gleeson
  • 6Kieftenbeld
  • 19MaghomaSubstituted forSolomon-Otaborat 85'minutes
  • 22ShinnieSubstituted forSpectorat 73'minutes
  • 7GraySubstituted forToralat 88'minutes
  • 9Donaldson

Substitutes

  • 1Legzdins
  • 17Solomon-Otabor
  • 18Brown
  • 20Toral
  • 23Spector
  • 25Lowry
  • 44Brock-Madsen
Referee:
Geoff Eltringham
Attendance:
13,703

Match Stats

Home TeamBoltonAway TeamBirmingham
Possession
Home58%
Away42%
Shots
Home16
Away14
Shots on Target
Home6
Away8
Corners
Home6
Away4
Fouls
Home22
Away10

Live Text

Match ends, Bolton Wanderers 0, Birmingham City 1.

Full Time

Second Half ends, Bolton Wanderers 0, Birmingham City 1.

Mark Davies (Bolton Wanderers) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Foul by Viv Solomon-Otabor (Birmingham City).

Corner, Bolton Wanderers. Conceded by Michael Morrison.

Attempt blocked. David Wheater (Bolton Wanderers) header from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Kaiyne Woolery with a cross.

Attempt blocked. Clayton Donaldson (Birmingham City) left footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Jon-Miquel Toral.

Dorian Dervite (Bolton Wanderers) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Clayton Donaldson (Birmingham City).

Substitution

Substitution, Birmingham City. Jon-Miquel Toral replaces Demarai Gray.

Foul by Gary Madine (Bolton Wanderers).

Paul Robinson (Birmingham City) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Substitution

Substitution, Birmingham City. Viv Solomon-Otabor replaces Jacques Maghoma.

Foul by Kaiyne Woolery (Bolton Wanderers).

Paul Robinson (Birmingham City) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Kaiyne Woolery (Bolton Wanderers).

Stephen Gleeson (Birmingham City) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Offside, Birmingham City. Demarai Gray tries a through ball, but Jonathan Grounds is caught offside.

Attempt missed. Paul Robinson (Birmingham City) right footed shot from the right side of the box is too high following a corner.

Corner, Birmingham City. Conceded by David Wheater.

Corner, Birmingham City. Conceded by Dorian Dervite.

Foul by Casado (Bolton Wanderers).

Demarai Gray (Birmingham City) wins a free kick on the right wing.

Foul by Max Clayton (Bolton Wanderers).

Jonathan Grounds (Birmingham City) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Substitution

Substitution, Bolton Wanderers. Kaiyne Woolery replaces Emile Heskey.

Attempt blocked. Gary Madine (Bolton Wanderers) header from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Liam Feeney with a cross.

Corner, Bolton Wanderers. Conceded by Stephen Gleeson.

Attempt blocked. Liam Feeney (Bolton Wanderers) right footed shot from the right side of the box is blocked.

Attempt blocked. Clayton Donaldson (Birmingham City) left footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Paul Robinson.

Substitution

Substitution, Birmingham City. Jonathan Spector replaces Andrew Shinnie.

Booking

Paul Robinson (Birmingham City) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Emile Heskey (Bolton Wanderers) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Paul Robinson (Birmingham City).

Substitution

Substitution, Bolton Wanderers. Neil Danns replaces Darren Pratley.

Offside, Birmingham City. Andrew Shinnie tries a through ball, but Clayton Donaldson is caught offside.

Booking

Casado (Bolton Wanderers) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Foul by Casado (Bolton Wanderers).

Demarai Gray (Birmingham City) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Corner, Bolton Wanderers. Conceded by Jonathan Grounds.

goal

As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Brighton128401810828
2Birmingham127321911824
3Reading126421881022
4Hull12642178922
5Burnley126421712522
6Middlesbrough12633178921
7Derby11551169720
8Cardiff125521511420
9Sheff Wed124531615117
10QPR124441922-316
11Ipswich124441520-516
12Wolves114341715215
13Huddersfield123541214-214
14Fulham113441716113
15Nottm Forest123451013-313
16Blackburn112541213-111
17Preston122551013-311
18MK Dons123271216-411
19Leeds112541015-511
20Brentford113261420-611
21Bristol City122461522-710
22Charlton122461118-710
23Rotherham122371422-89
24Bolton12156919-108
View full Championship table

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