Championship
RotherhamRotherham United0BirminghamBirmingham City1

Rotherham United 0-1 Birmingham City

Clayton Donaldson
Clayton Donaldson has scored six goals this season

Birmingham City climbed out of the Championship bottom three as Clayton Donaldson's strike beat Rotherham, who drop into the relegation zone.

Andrew Shinnie hit the post with a curling effort from the edge of the area for Birmingham as did David Cotterill with a thunderous effort.

Birmingham took the lead after Donaldson tucked home on the rebound.

The home side should have levelled but Paul Green disappointedly dragged his shot wide from 10 yards.

Shinnie was inches away from giving Blues the lead, when he dodged a tackle before striking a post with a curling effort.

Birmingham continued to look dangerous as Donaldson held off Craig Morgan to produce another save from Collin before Demarai Gray tested the home keeper from distance.

Blues find their feet under Rowett
After losing 8-0 at home to Bournemouth on 25 October, following the sacking of Lee Clark five days earlier, Birmingham City have now conceded just one goal in four games since new manager Gary Rowett took charge.

Adam Collin then had to be alert to deny David Cotterill from a free-kick.

Blues were denied by the woodwork again before half-time after Cotterill's thunderous effort ricocheted off the bar and away to safety.

Jonson Clarke-Harris and Paul Taylor then had efforts on goal for Rotherham as the half finished with end-to-end action.

Substitute Emmanuel Ledesma's first involvement was to pick out Clarke-Harris, who could only direct his header straight at City keeper Darren Randolph.

But Birmingham took the lead after 62 minutes when Donaldson finally finished off the best chance of the match.

Put through by Shinnie, Donaldson was first denied by a wonderful save by Collin, but the ball fell kindly back to the striker and he powered a shot beyond the keeper and the recovering defenders.

The home side should have levelled when a free-kick was only half cleared and the ball fell kindly to substitute Green but he failed to hit the target.

Rotherham United boss Steve Evans:

"It looked like two poor teams out there.

"It was the poorest performance from us that I can remember for a while. If that's our performance levels it's not going to be good enough for this league, that's for sure.

"We look at ourselves and it was disjointed. The central defensive pairing have been a rock to what we have achieved in the last couple of years but it looked like neither of them had ever played football."

Birmingham City boss Gary Rowett:

"It was the most complete performance that we've had since taking over, We played with really good control and some good composure.

"It was important that, when we needed to, we picked good opportunities to get into those little spaces.

"We are really pleased with the way we went about things. You always worry that maybe a poor performance is round the corner after three games but the fourth one was the best so far."

Line-ups

Rotherham

Formation 4-4-2

  • 21Collin
  • 16Richardson
  • 20Morgan
  • 4ArnasonBooked at 58mins
  • 3Skarz
  • 26TaylorSubstituted forLedesmaat 45'minutes
  • 8FrecklingtonSubstituted forGreenat 67'minutes
  • 33Smallwood
  • 18Pringle
  • 9Revell
  • 29Clarke-HarrisBooked at 56minsSubstituted forBoweryat 72'minutes

Substitutes

  • 5Broadfoot
  • 10Bowery
  • 11Green
  • 15Milsom
  • 27Derbyshire
  • 32Ledesma
  • 35Thompson

Birmingham

Formation 4-2-3-1

  • 1Randolph
  • 31Caddis
  • 28Morrison
  • 4Robinson
  • 3Grounds
  • 8Gleeson
  • 26Davis
  • 33GraySubstituted forNovakat 78'minutes
  • 22ShinnieSubstituted forReillyat 88'minutes
  • 11CotterillBooked at 78mins
  • 9Donaldson

Substitutes

  • 2Eardley
  • 6Edgar
  • 12Novak
  • 13Shea
  • 17Reilly
  • 21Doyle
  • 24Arthur
Referee:
Darren Bond
Attendance:
10,937

Match Stats

Home TeamRotherhamAway TeamBirmingham
Possession
Home53%
Away47%
Shots
Home11
Away23
Shots on Target
Home2
Away8
Corners
Home5
Away4
Fouls
Home10
Away9

Live Text

  1. Post update

    Match ends, Rotherham United 0, Birmingham City 1.

  2. Full Time

    Second Half ends, Rotherham United 0, Birmingham City 1.

  3. Post update

    Attempt missed. Jordan Bowery (Rotherham United) right footed shot from the right side of the box is just a bit too high. Assisted by Craig Morgan.

  4. Post update

    Attempt saved. Clayton Donaldson (Birmingham City) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Michael Morrison.

  5. Substitution

    Substitution, Birmingham City. Callum Reilly replaces Andrew Shinnie.

  6. Post update

    Joe Skarz (Rotherham United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  7. Post update

    Foul by Andrew Shinnie (Birmingham City).

  8. Post update

    Attempt missed. Paul Green (Rotherham United) right footed shot from long range on the right misses to the left. Assisted by Jordan Bowery.

  9. Post update

    Attempt missed. David Cotterill (Birmingham City) right footed shot from the left side of the box misses to the right.

  10. Post update

    Attempt saved. Paul Green (Rotherham United) header from the centre of the box is saved in the top centre of the goal. Assisted by Emmanuel Ledesma with a cross.

  11. Post update

    Attempt missed. Lee Novak (Birmingham City) right footed shot from the right side of the box is too high.

  12. Post update

    Offside, Birmingham City. David Cotterill tries a through ball, but Clayton Donaldson is caught offside.

  13. Booking

    David Cotterill (Birmingham City) is shown the yellow card.

  14. Substitution

    Substitution, Birmingham City. Lee Novak replaces Demarai Gray.

  15. Post update

    Attempt missed. Alex Revell (Rotherham United) right footed shot from the right side of the six yard box is close, but misses to the right. Assisted by Jordan Bowery with a cross.

  16. Post update

    Attempt missed. Paul Green (Rotherham United) right footed shot from the centre of the box misses to the left. Assisted by Jordan Bowery with a headed pass following a set piece situation.

  17. Post update

    Alex Revell (Rotherham United) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

  18. Post update

    Foul by Paul Robinson (Birmingham City).

  19. Post update

    Hand ball by Alex Revell (Rotherham United).

  20. Post update

    Attempt blocked. Clayton Donaldson (Birmingham City) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Demarai Gray.