McLeish admits anxiety
Alex McLeish believes it would be a lie if Birmingham claimed they were not suffering relegation nerves.
Last Updated: 07/05/11 6:43pm
Alex McLeish believes it would be a lie if anybody associated with Birmingham claimed they were not anxious about the threat of relegation.
The Carling Cup winners lost 2-1 at Newcastle on Saturday as a Shola Ameobi penalty and a Steven Taylor header rendered a Lee Bowyer effort as a consolation.
Liam Ridgewell had been sent off in the build-up to the penalty to leave Birmingham facing an uphill challenge which they were unable to overcome.
The defeat leaves McLeish's side just four points clear of the relegation zone with two games left to play and the Scot admits it is a nervy conclusion.
"There is nerves before the game," he told Sky Sports. "Anybody who tells you there is no nerves, then they are not telling the truth.
"If you are not feeling nerves, then you are not human."
McLeish was unimpressed with his side's defending at St James' Park, but he also believed that Taylor should have been sent off before he scored for what had looked like an accidental elbow in the face of Cameron Jerome after just five minutes.
The former Rangers and Scotland boss said of the defending: "We're a soft touch at times in there. Sometimes I've seen us impregnable and other times I've seen us getting thrown around like rag dolls.
"And two free headers in the box, saying that the second goalscorer shouldn't have been on the pitch by that time.
"He threw his elbow in Cameron's face in the first few minutes of the game.
"But, anyway, he got away with it and unfortunately for us, the double-whammy, he gets the goal as well."