Birmingham City 2 Nuneaton Town 1
BSC Final, Thursday 30th April 2015
Match report courtesy of Nuneaton News;
So, a season that promised so much back in August has ended with relegation and a cup final defeat as Boro could not topple the Blues of Birmingham in their own back yard in the Birmingham Senior Cup Final.
They huffed and puffed, but the St Andrews outfit held firm, as a young squad, sprinkled with the likes of Nikola Zigic proved too strong for Nuneaton in the county competition.
The game was just eight minutes old when Nuneaton came close to breaking the deadlock.
Jannai Gordon did all the hard work, as he twisted this way and that and left the defence flat footed. His shot was diverted goalwards by the head of Andy Brown, where the frontman was unlucky to see it cannon out of play after deflecting off the crossbar.
The agility shown to get his head to the ball was good – but it was not a patch on that of Max Crocombe a little under ten minutes later.
That Kiwi keeper has been a revelation since joining the club earlier in the campaign, and he added to his archive of quality stops, somehow getting a hand to a close range header from Matt Green.
There was nothing he could do two minutes later though, as a corner from the left was not cleared by the Boro, allowing Wesley Harding the chance to head home from under the crossbar.
Nuneaton did not learn their lesson as it did not take that long for Birmingham to double their advantage – and once again it was a headed goal.
This time it was Matt Green who did the damage, the Blues number ten was afforded far too much room in the penalty area, heading home from close range under no pressure whatsoever.
Nuneaton began to get a footing in the game after the second goal, but it was not until after the half time break that they really began to threaten.
Their more adventurous approach was rewarded in the 58th minute as Josh Rees halved the deficit with a thunderous volley from inside the penalty area.
The midfield man was not pressured in the box, and much like the Blues goalscorers in the first half, he took full advantage to smash it home past Nick Townsend.
The second half was like chalk and cheese to the first as it was Nuneaton who looked to press and they were asking all the questions.
They could have drawn level on a number of occasions as they created numerous half chances, the best of which saw Andy Brown head over when inside the six yard box, the frontman would have wanted to test the keeper at least after being well placed.
After a season fighting a losing battle against relegation, it was apt then that, that chance – and all the others created as well – did not go in, as celebrations would not have seemed right after the nine months that preceded them.
Instead it was a case of what if in the Birmingham Senior Cup Final, just like it was in the league, as the Boro fell just short and now face a summer of rebuilding as they prepare for life in the Conference North next season.
NUNEATON TOWN: Crocombe, Smith, Dean, Streete, Franklin, Dawson (Walker 85), Rees, Armson (Anton Brown 76), Gordon, Andy Brown, Ogleby (Sodje 64).
Subs not used: Cowan, Wren.
BIRMINGHAM CITY: Townsend, Dacres-Cogley, Hancox, Cooper, Harding, Bernard, Solomon-Otabor (Cotton 78), Brown, Zigic, Green, Guthmy (O'Neill 46)
Subs not used: Kelly, Weaver, McFarlane.