Birmingham City 0 Wigan 1 match report: Birmingham on brink of relegation as Wigan head for play-offs

st andrew's

Birmingham City edged closer to the Championship trap door as their long season of frustration at St Andrew's reached a predictably bitter end against Wigan Athletic.

Despite the backing of a 20,427 crowd – their second highest of the season – Lee Clark's side succumbed to a fifth straight home defeat as Callum McManaman's early goal lifted Wigan Athletic into fifth place above Reading and cemented their play-off berth.

It was Wigan's first win at St Andrew's and leaves them two games away from a fifth visit to Wembley in a year. For Birmingham by contrast, memories of winning the League Cup at Wembley in 2011 feel a long time ago now. They now stand on the verge of falling into the third tier for the first time since 1995.

They sit third bottom of the Championship, a point behind Doncaster – who visit Leicester on Saturday – and two behind Millwall, and the only blessing is that their final match is at Bolton, rather than St Andrew's. After all, this was their 16th home league match without a victory.

The lone cry of "bollocks" when the stadium announcer revealed there would be two minutes of first-half stoppage time, seemed a fair summary of a desperate first period on a night when nerves got to both sides resulting in pass after pass going astray.

In the case of Wigan, they could at least point to the fact this was their 59th game of a long campaign which has featured 14 cup ties at home and in Europe. Fatigue seemed to have got the better of Uwe Rösler's men when losing three of their previous four Championship fixtures but they had the perfect fillip with McManaman's third-minute strike. Jordi Gomez brought the ball forward and slid a pass to McManaman who stepped in from the left side of the penalty box and found the far corner with a low shot.

The only response from a blunt Birmingham side came with a curling shot by Emyr Huws, the young midfielder on loan from Manchester City, that Scott Carson kept out of the top corner.

At half-time, Clarke threw on Nikola Zigic who decided to stick around when it turned out his rumoured £70,000 a week contract had no relegation clause. The big Serbian's goal threat was confined to a tame header at Scott Carson. The goalkeeper also kept out Hayden Mullins' low drive as Birmingham upped the pressure at the end but for Wigan, it was job done. Birmingham still have it all to do.

Birmingham City (4-2-3-1): Randolph; Caddis, Spector, Mullins, Hancox; Huws, Adeyemi (Shinnie, 83); Burke, Allan (Ibe, 60) Novak, (Zigic, h-t) Macheda. Substitutes not used Doyle (gk), Martin, Reilly, Gray.

Wigan Athletic (3-4-1-2): Carson; Boyce, Caldwell, Kiernan; Perch, Gomez, McArthur, Beausejour; Maloney (Barnett, 90); Waghorn (Fortune, 61), McManaman (Maynard, 84). Substitutes not used Al Habsi (gk), Espinoza, Crainey, Collison.

Referee A Woolmer (Northamptonshire).

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
The Apprentice candidates Roisin Hogan, Solomon Akhtar, Mark Wright, Bianca Miller, Daniel Lassman
tvReview: But which contestants got the boot?
Arts and Entertainment
Jim Carrey and Jeff Daniels ride again in Dumb and Dumber To
filmReview: Dumb And Dumber To was a really stupid idea
News
people

Jo from Northern Ireland was less than impressed by Russell Brand's attempt to stage a publicity stunt

Sport
Scunthorpe goalkeeper Sam Slocombe (left) is congratulated by winning penalty taker Miguel Llera (right)
football
Life and Style
A woman walks by a pandal art installation entitled 'Mars Mission' with the figure of an astronaut during the Durga Puja festival in Calcutta, India
techHow we’ll investigate the existence of, and maybe move in with, our alien neighbours
Arts and Entertainment
Sir Ian McKellen tempts the Cookie Monster
tvSir Ian McKellen joins the Cookie Monster for a lesson on temptation
News
i100
Travel
Tourists bask in the sun beneath the skyscrapers of Dubai
travelBritish embassy uses social media campaign to issue travel advice for festive holiday-makers in UAE
Arts and Entertainment
Jennifer Saunders stars as Miss Windsor, Dennis's hysterical French teacher
filmJennifer Saunders and Kate Moss join David Walliams on set for TV adaptation of The Boy in the Dress
Life and Style
tech
Sport
Nabil Bentaleb (centre) celebrates putting Tottenham ahead
footballTottenham 4 Newcastle 0: Spurs fans dreaming of Wembley final after dominant win
Life and Style
Sebastian Siemiatkowski is the 33-year-old co-founder and CEO of Klarna, which provides a simple way for people to buy things online
tech
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton: The power dynamics of the two first families

Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton

Karen Tumulty explores the power dynamics of the two first families
Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley with a hotbed of technology start-ups

Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley

The Swedish capital is home to two of the most popular video games in the world, as well as thousands of technology start-ups worth hundreds of millions of pounds – and it's all happened since 2009
Did Japanese workers really get their symbols mixed up and display Santa on a crucifix?

Crucified Santa: Urban myth refuses to die

The story goes that Japanese store workers created a life-size effigy of a smiling "Father Kurisumasu" attached to a facsimile of Our Lord's final instrument of torture
Jennifer Saunders and Kate Moss join David Walliams on set for TV adaptation of The Boy in the Dress

The Boy in the Dress: On set with the stars

Walliams' story about a boy who goes to school in a dress will be shown this Christmas
La Famille Bélier is being touted as this year's Amelie - so why are many in the deaf community outraged by it?

Deaf community outraged by La Famille Bélier

The new film tells the story of a deaf-mute farming family and is being touted as this year's Amelie
10 best high-end laptops

10 best high-end laptops

From lightweight and zippy devices to gaming beasts, we test the latest in top-spec portable computers
Michael Carberry: ‘After such a tough time, I’m not sure I will stay in the game’

Michael Carberry: ‘After such a tough time, I’m not sure I will stay in the game’

The batsman has grown disillusioned after England’s Ashes debacle and allegations linking him to the Pietersen affair
Susie Wolff: A driving force in battle for equality behind the wheel

Susie Wolff: A driving force in battle for equality behind the wheel

The Williams driver has had plenty of doubters, but hopes she will be judged by her ability in the cockpit
Adam Gemili interview: 'No abs Adam' plans to muscle in on Usain Bolt's turf

'No abs Adam' plans to muscle in on Usain Bolt's turf

After a year touched by tragedy, Adam Gemili wants to become the sixth Briton to run a sub-10sec 100m
Calls for a military mental health 'quality mark'

Homeless Veterans campaign

Expert calls for military mental health 'quality mark'
Racton Man: Analysis shows famous skeleton was a 6ft Bronze Age superman

Meet Racton Man

Analysis shows famous skeleton was a 6ft Bronze Age superman
Garden Bridge: St Paul’s adds to £175m project’s troubled waters

Garden Bridge

St Paul’s adds to £175m project’s troubled waters
Stuff your own Christmas mouse ornament: An evening class in taxidermy with a festive feel

Stuff your own Christmas mouse ornament

An evening class in taxidermy with a festive feel
Joint Enterprise: The legal doctrine which critics say has caused hundreds of miscarriages of justice

Joint Enterprise

The legal doctrine which critics say has caused hundreds of miscarriages of justice
Freud and Eros: Love, Lust and Longing at the Freud Museum: Objects of Desire

Freud and Eros

Love, Lust and Longing at the Freud Museum