Birmingham 2-1 Bristol City: Jacques Maghoma hits winner for Blues
By PA Sport
Last Updated: 12/08/17 7:03pm
Jacques Maghoma displayed a brilliant piece of individual finishing to score Birmingham's winning goal against Bristol City.
Birmingham had to battle back from going behind after only 47 seconds to a Bobby Reid strike to record their first league win of the season against a Bristol City side who had not won at St Andrew's in 14 visits.
Harry Redknapp's side, who had Maikel Kieftenbeld sent off 10 minutes from time, put themselves back in the game with a 30th minute equaliser from Craig Gardner and won 2-1 thanks to Maghoma's strike with just over 15 minutes remaining.
The South West club were certainly fast out of the traps, as they were in their 3-1 opening day win over Barnsley, and went ahead with less than a minute on the clock, mainly thanks to Famara Diedhiou.
The Senegal striker, a £5million signing from Angers, displayed extreme confidence as he twice flicked the ball up and over the head of a Birmingham defender before gliding his shot against the bar. Josh Brownhill latched onto the rebound and fired in a shot which also hit the woodwork before the ball was turned over the line by Reid.
Birmingham immediately responded with some positive attacking play in which Che Adams was prominent. He forced goalkeeper Frank Fielding to make a smart save and following the resultant corner, Adams saw his powerful shot cleared off the line by Joe Bryan.
But Bristol City were fired up by their fine start and displayed some neat, attractive attacking play which kept Birmingham at full stretch as Marc Roberts in particular appeared vulnerable in the home defence against the play of Reid and Diedhiou.
Birmingham played with a lot of determination to make amends for their early set-back and it was not until the 30th minute that they managed to get back on level terms. Roberts launched one of his typical long throw-ins into the heart of Bristol's defence. The ball was partially cleared into the path of Craig Gardner who hammered home an accurate low shot to the right of Fielding.
Only a brave tackle by skipper Michael Morrison prevented Diedhiou regaining the lead and seconds later goalkeeper David Stockdale made a save to keep out an effort from Jamie Paterson.
Fielding also distinguished himself with an excellent save to keep out a shot on sight from Maghoma.
Birmingham suffered a setback on the hour when the impressive Evans limped off with a hamstring injury, and then Kieftenbeld saw red for a mistimed challenge.
However Maghoma's 75th minute winner, scored with a long-range raking drive, earned the three points.
Harry Redknapp: "Where do we go from here? I now have only one striker with the injury to Adams who will be out of action for several weeks. It is a crazy situation at this stage of the season. We are going to finish up with youngsters in the side.
"What we need to do is to get some deals over the line. The owners and myself are ambitious. I want to see the team up at the top of the table. It was a great result against Bristol City achieved with courage, guts and effort. The crowd also kept us going after Bristol City's opening goal.
"You do not want to be one down in a minute but we came back strongly. I thought they were the better team in the first half and we had to hang in and get to half-time."
Lee Johnson: "It was one of those days. We could have won the game on another day 4-2 or 5-2. Our strikers looked dangerous and we had some chances even in the last few minutes when Reid hit the post.
"My disappointment was that I thought we had cracked it for five or 10 minutes but then we became a little sloppy. It should not have happened. Parts of our first half was scintillating. But I hate losing and I do not want to drain the confidence of the players because I thought there was so much to celebrate but they have got to learn fast."