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Nov 30, 2012 at 7.45pm UK at St Andrew's
BirminghamBirmingham City
King (45' pen., 81'), Elliott (66')
FT(HT: 1-1)
Leadbitter (14'), McDonald (62')

Match Analysis: Birmingham City 3-2 Middlesbrough

Sports Mole analyses the Championship clash between Birmingham City and Middlesbrough.

Birmingham City achieved only their fourth home win of the season on Friday night with victory over Middlesbrough in the Championship.

Boro twice went ahead through Grant Leadbitter and then Scott McDonald, but Birmingham, who twice equalised through Marlon King and Wade Elliott, took a 3-2 win courtesy of a low King drive.

Here, Sports Mole takes a closer look at the action and picks the bones of the result.

Match statistics:

Shots 11
On target 8
Possession 48%
Corners 3
Fouls 12

Shots 13
On target 6
Possession 52%
Corners 3
Fouls 13

Was the result fair?

In truth, a draw would have been a fair result on the balance of play, but Birmingham's resilience and character to twice come from behind made sure that the win is not harsh on Boro. The away side dominated for spells, but Birmingham took their chances very well.

Birmingham's performance

7/10. A game of two halves best sums up Birmingham's showing. In the first they were poor on the ball and sluggish, and they were fortunate to be level at the break. In the second half, despite going behind, Lee Clark's substitutions changed the game and all three of Elliott, Chris Burke and Peter Lovenkrands had an impact on the game.

Middlesbrough's performance

6/10. After leading twice Boro would have expected to hold on to the win. However they were characteristically sloppy at times in the second half and goalkeeper Jason Steele will be disappointed about his positioning for Elliott's equaliser.

Sports Mole's man of the match

Marlon King: The striker is on form this season and it showed in the goals he scored tonight. His first was a perfectly-dispatched penalty after drawing the foul and his second was a fantastic low finish from the edge of the box. He won a fair share of headers and was a constant menace to the Boro defence.

Biggest gaffe

This has to go to Andre Bikey for his part in giving away the penalty late in the first half. If he hadn't hauled down King, Boro might well have come out differently in the second half being ahead. As it was, his act gave Birmingham confidence and they improved from that point.

Referee performance

Roger East had a strong game, apart from one error not to award Boro a first-half penalty when 1-0 up. Curtis Davies took away McDonald's standing leg but this was missed by East. However, he was spot on with the Birmingham penalty and every other decision in the game.

What next?

Birmingham: The Blues face a tricky trip to Wolverhampton Wanderers, although tonight's win will mean they will go into that game full of confidence.

Middlesbrough: Middlesbrough face rock-bottom Peterborough United, again away, to try again to get back into the top two.

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Birmingham's Marlon King celebrates scoring a penalty on November 30, 2012
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Live Commentary: Birmingham City 3-2 Middlesbrough - as it happened

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