Blues win bitter derby scrap
By Paul Higham
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Stan Lazaridis and Geoff Horsfield scored the goals and red cards for Dion Dublin and Joey Gudjonsson, along with several crowd disturbances made for an astonishing derby match finally ending in favour of the visitors to give them a memorable double over Villa.
The first half was packed with effort and energy but as the tackles flew in there was little quality to be seen on the pitch as neither side could fashion out a clear-cut chance.
The game changed shortly after half time when Dublin reacted to something said by Robbie Savage after a challenge between the two players and aimed an angry head-butt that floored the Welshman in dramatic style and resulted in Dublin taking an early bath.
Birmingham made their man advantage tell on 72 minutes when Lazaridis arrived at the far post to convert Jeff Kenna's cross to score his first league goal of the season with his final touch before being substituted.
Jlloyd Samuel then produced a weak header back to Peter Enckelman and Horsfield nipped the ball away from the keeper before slotting home to the delight of the Blues fans.
The atmosphere was turning nasty inside Villa Park as fans became restless and the visiting spectators were incensed when Joey Gudjonsson came flying in two-footed to earn his second yellow card and lead to more tempers flaring on and off the pitch.
Savage was removed by Steve Bruce as the crowd threatened to spill onto the pitch, while a final twist saw Horsfield go in goal to cover for the injured Nico Vaesen before referee Mark Halsey finally ended the bitter encounter to hand Birmingham a league double over their fierce neighbours.
Aston Villa v Birmingham