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Summary

  1. Birmingham's David Davis then cancels out Gaston Ramirez's goal
  2. Stephen Gleeson's strike cancelled out by Jordan Rhodes' equaliser for Middlesbrough
  3. Daniel Ayala has a goal disallowed
  4. Middlesbrough will still go top with a point
  5. Boro level on points with Burnley and Brighton
  6. Two wins enough for Boro to be promoted

Live Reporting

By Tom Garry

All times stated are UK

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Advantage Burnley and Brighton?

FT: Birmingham City 2-2 Middlesbrough

Ritchie de Laet
Rex Features

Thanks for joining us for what proved to be something of a Championship classic.

You can relive the full drama with Ged Scott's match report from St Andrew's.

But after a night of great saves, inexplicable misses, four goals, one hugely controversial disallowed goal and a well-and-truly rattled crossbar, Middlesbrough are one point clear at the top of the Championship.

Will it prove to be an invaluable point or an opportunity missed? Burnley and Brighton - over to you.

Good night.

Reaction

FT: Birmingham City 2-2 Middlesbrough

Middlesbrough defender Daniel Ayala, who had a goal controversially disallowed in the second half, tells Sky Sports: "I thought it was a goal. I haven't seen the replay. But if we win the last game we're still up.

On facing Brighton next weekend, Ayala adds: "We are ready for it. We are one win away, to go to the Premier League."

Middlesbrough midfielder Grant Leadbitter tells Sky Sports: "It was a good game, end to end. Credit to Birmingham, they're a good team.

"We know what we've got to do from now, it's up to us. We're unlucky not to win the game (tonight). We don't dwell on things at this club, we move on quickly."

FT: Birmingham City 2-2 Middlesbrough

Well, that was great entertainment, if nothing else. What a thriller!

To sum up the permutations, Middlesbrough are now up to 88 points with one match left - and they play Brighton next weekend. What a prospect that is!

Burnley and the Seagulls both play on Monday and they both lie on 87 points.

FULL-TIME

Birmingham City 2-2 Middlesbrough

Time is called on a genuinely fantastic game of football. A fine advert for the enthralling division that is the Championship.

Is that a point gained for Boro? It will feel like two lost. They had enough chances to win the game, but then so did Birmingham.

Birmingham City 2-2 Middlesbrough

If it stays like this, Boro will go one point clear at the top but Burnley and Brighton - who both play on Monday - will have the chance to go two points above Boro before the crucial final day.

Birmingham City 2-2 Middlesbrough

David Nugent blasts over the bar as the ball dropped to him from that free-kick. Time is running out for Boro to win it.

Meanwhile, the television cameras pick out a Boro fan in the crowd, with floods of tears streaming down his worried face. In all the drama, that image probably sums up how Boro fans are feeling.

Hang in there lad, this is one of the games of the season.

Birmingham City 2-2 Middlesbrough

We are into the final minute of normal time at the end of this breathless game and Middlesbrough have a free-kick in a very dangerous position. Four added minutes are on the way.

Birmingham City 2-2 Middlesbrough

Steve Claridge

Ex-Portsmouth striker on BBC Radio 5 live

"I thought that was in as soon as he struck it.

"It struck the bar flush on. Wow. Such are moments that promotion is decided on."

HITS THE WOODWORK

Birmingham City 2-2 Middlesbrough

Grant Leadbitter smacks the crossbar for Boro. Is it not their night? That was a cracking effort from outside the area. It might have got a vital touch from Adam Legzdins to divert it onto the bar.

Birmingham City 2-2 Middlesbrough

Middlesbrough have a chance for 3-2 but Emilio Nsue heads wide across goal from a corner. Meanwhile, David Nugent is on for Jordan Rhodes - can Nugent win it for Boro?

SUBSTITUTION

Birmingham City 2-2 Middlesbrough

Middlesbrough bring on Christian Stuani for Stewart Downing, while Birmingham bring on Viv Solomon-Otabor for David Davis.

GREAT SAVE!

Birmingham City 2-2 Middlesbrough

Dimitrios Konstantopoulos is MIddlesbrough's hero all of a sudden, as he dives to his right to save an outstanding, dipping effort from David Cotterill, his second in three minutes. Maikel Kieftenbeld is then almost in for the rebound but Daniel Ayala makes a vital intervention. Middlesbrough fans breathe again.

Birmingham City 2-2 Middlesbrough

Steve Claridge

Ex-Portsmouth striker on BBC Radio 5 live

"Cotterill smashes it, it's a bit Ronaldo-esque hit with the laces over the top - bang! That ball is moving.

"Credit where it's due, he's made a few iffy saves but that was a decent stop.

"They've had three or four wonderful chances the last quarter of an hour. They're far more dangerous."

CLOSE!

Birmingham City 2-2 Middlesbrough

It's been a cracking second half and we almost have another twist as David Cotterill fizzes in a swerving free-kick from the right but Dimitrios Konstantopoulos does well in the end to make the save and then gets down to stop the rebound too.

We are into the final 10 minutes of this thrilling game.

SUBSTITUTION (Birmingham)

Birmingham City 2-2 Middlesbrough

Diego Fabbrini comes off for Birmingham's veteran defender, Paul Robinson.

If that's a tactical switch, it's a defensive one from Gary Rowett, but it may be sentimental, perhaps giving Robinson one last appearance at St Andrews?

Fabbrini did receive a warm round of applause from the Boro fans, acknowledging his loan spell at the Riverside earlier this season.

Birmingham City 2-2 Middlesbrough

We've just seen another replay of Daniel Ayala's disallowed goal. I have a feeling Middlesbrough fans will talk about that moment for a very, very long time, if they don't go on to win promotion this season. Boro can't believe that was ruled out. Ayala was absolutely definitely onside.

CLOSE!

Birmingham City 2-2 Middlesbrough

Now Birmingham should be ahead, but Diego Fabbrini heads over, unmarked, from six yards out, having been picked out by David Cotterill's cross. This is astonishing football. It could be 4-4.

Birmingham City 2-2 Middlesbrough

Steve Claridge

Ex-Portsmouth striker on BBC Radio 5 live

"I don't think any Birmingham players looked to the linesman.

"It's a £60 million decision that one. I was against video evidence, but now it's in that has to be in it. That [offside] is no less important.

"We have goal line technology and can be decided in a matter of seconds. It should come in for that as well."

DISALLOWED GOAL (Ayala)

Birmingham City 2-2 Midlesbrough

What drama we have here. Middlesbrough think they've re-taken the lead almost immediately, as Daniel Ayala slots in, but somehow, he has been flagged for offside.

Boro are going to be furious with that because he was clearly onside....by miles! He wasn't even the furthest forward of the Boro players!

GOAL (Davis)

Birmingham City 2-2 Middlesbrough

No, no they're not!! That's an absolute beauty from David Davis to equalise!

Middlesbrough are going to have to go again, because Davis finds the bottom corner with a terrific strike.

David Davis celebrates his goal
Rex Features

Birmingham City 1-2 Middlesbrough

Birmingham have lost five of their last 10 home games in all competitions 2-1. Is it going to be six in 11?

Birmingham City 1-2 Middlesbrough

Will Boro sit deep?

Steve Claridge

Ex-Portsmouth striker on BBC Radio 5 live

"Subconsciously as a footballer you step back to defend what you've got.

"Managers want players to keep going forward to create chances but it doesn't work like that."

Jordan Rhodes
Rex Features

Birmingham City 1-2 Middlesbrough

Birmingham have responded pretty well to falling behind and they win a corner, but Jonathan Grounds heads over.

Birmingham City 1-2 Middlesbrough

The away fans are delirious! They've come from behind and they lead. Now what can Birmingham do? There is plenty of time left yet, for them to dent Boro's promotion dreams.

GOAL (Ramirez)

Birmingham City 1-2 Middlesbrough

It's a massive, massive goal for Middlesbrough!

Jordan Rhodes may have missed, astonishingly, a few moments ago, but he redeems himself with a perfectly cushioned-down header from a deep Albert Adomah cross to find Gaston Ramirez in the six-yard box, who nods in.

The Boro fans go absolutely wild. What a second half we are seeing, and we're not at the hour mark yet.

Birmingham City 1-1 Middlesbrough

Down the other end, David Cotterill tries his luck from way, way out with an ambitious free-kick, but he strikes the wall.

Middlesbrough look to break but eventually give away a free-kick for a foul on Diego Fabbrini.

Birmingham City 1-1 Middlesbrough

Steve Claridge

Ex-Portsmouth striker on BBC Radio 5 live

"It's incredible, Rhodes? How has he missed? He's middle of the goal five yards out, it comes back off the post, he's got to get out of the way and let Adomah shoot.

"But he tries to rectify the mistake and Ramirez hits high and over.

"You won't get a better chance than that this season or next season.

"Two great chances from dead-balls."

HITS THE WOODWORK

Birmingham City 1-1 Middlesbrough

How have Middlesbrough not scored? How?

From a dangerous free-kick, a completely-unmarked Jordan Rhodes inexplicably hits the post with a shinned effort, and then they're queuing up to net the rebound, but between three Boro players, Gaston Ramirez somehow blasts over the bar, after Rhodes had got in Albert Adomah's way. What. A. Miss.

CLOSE!

Birmingham City 1-1 Middlesbrough

Middlesbrough breathe a big sigh of relief! Ryan Shotton gets up well again, this time from a left-wing David Cotterill free-kick, but his glancing header drops narrowly, narrowly wide. That was so lucky for Boro.

Birmingham City 1-1 Middlesbrough

As things stand, we should stress - Middlesbrough are going top of the Championship tonight.

But a draw would feel like two points dropped. This is, quite simply, a huge, huge night of football in Middlesbrough Football Club's history.

Birmingham City 1-1 Middlesbrough

From an early Birmingham corner at the start of the second half, Ryan Shotton climbs highest at the back of the penalty area but he can't keep his header down.

KICK-OFF

Birmingham City 1-1 Middlesbrough

Birmingham City get the second half started at St Andrew's.

Blues-Boro a slow burner

HT: Birmingham City 1-1 Middlesbrough

Ged Scott

BBC Sport

"It took a long time to come to life but we have certainly got a game on our hands at St Andrew's now. What a final 15 minutes of the first half that was!

"It's possible that Dimi Konstantopoulos might privately think he could have done more to keep out Stephen Gleeson's undoubtedly powerful shot.

"But it does not even compare to the clanger dropped by home keeper Adam Legzdins.

"Having just made two pretty decent last-ditch block saves to deny Jordan Rhodes, he really handed the prolific striker a gift.

"In trying to field a pretty tame free kick from Gaston Ramirez, he fumbled the ball like it was a slippery bar of soap, and the hungry Rhodes was on it like the natural predator he is."

Jordan Rhodes celebrates
Rex Features

First-half stats

HT: Birmingham City 1-1 MIddlesbrough

BBC
BBC Sport

As the first-half stats illustrate, Boro have seen more of the ball, but the only stat that matters is the goals-scored one...

Interested in becoming a sports reporter?

HT: Birmingham City 1-1 Middlesbrough

BBC Kick Off
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Then why not apply for the #BBCKickOff Trainee Sports Reporter scheme?

It's aimed at giving people from a diverse range of backgrounds and varying knowledge an experience of the BBC an opportunity to develop reporting skills within the organisation’s sports teams all across the country.

We focus on people’s passion for sport rather than their background, academic ability or journalism experience. 

This year, successful reporters will be on their placements during the Rio Olympics and the start of the Paralympics. This will be a fantastic experience for any aspiring sports reporter.

Visit bbc.co.uk/kickoff to apply or for more information.

Saturday's games

HT: Birmingham City 1-1 Middlesbrough

We're back with more live text commentary from the Championship tomorrow afternoon, with Bolton hosting Hull (KO 12:30 BST)

Elsewhere in the second tier (all kick-offs 15:00 BST):

  • Bristol City v Huddersfield Town
  • Ipswich Town v MK Dons
  • Leeds United v Charlton
  • Nottingham Forest v Wolverhampton Wanderers
  • Reading v Preston North End
  • Rotherham United v Blackburn Rovers
  • Sheffield Wednesday v Cardiff City

Just to add extra spice, Burnley and Brighton both play on Monday...

HT: Birmingham City 1-1 Middlesbrough

Well, that was fun, wasn't it? Or maybe stressful, depending on who you support.

The game may have started slowly, but we have the makings of a real cracker at St Andrew's now. Stephen Gleeson's superbly-struck opener for Birmingham has been cancelled out by a real howler from the hosts' goalkeeper, Adam Legzdins, but Middlesbrough certainly had their chances for more goals over the course of that first half.

Adam Legzdins looks on ruefully after Jordan Rhodes' equaliser
Rex

HALF-TIME

Birmingham City 1-1 Middlesbrough

Gaston Ramirez is almost in on goal in the Birmingham penalty area, but he can't quite get a shot away, and the referee's whistle blows for half-time.

Birmingham City 1-1 Middlesbrough

So, after all that drama, we are about to have three minutes of added time at the end of this frantic half.

Thoughts with Merseyside

Birmingham City 1-1 Middlesbrough

Ged Scott

BBC Sport at St Andrew's

"One nice touch in the middle of all that, in the week of the Hillsborough inquests verdicts, was a rendition from the Tilton End of 'Justice for the 96' "