Birmingham prove far too strong for second-string City side

Birmingham City goalkeeper and Cork native Colin Doyle wins the ball from Cork City's  Cillian Morrison during the friendly at Turners Cross last night.

Cork City 0 Birmingham City 3
Birmingham City got their pre-season preparations off to a winning start as they comfortably defeated a second-string Cork City side in last night’s friendly at Turner’s Cross.

Birmingham boss Lee Clark, whose side are staying at the Fota Island Resort for the week, will be happy with the workout as his side dominated from start to finish in front of a small crowd.

Dan Murray and new signing Cillian Morrison were the only two starters from the side that started the 0-0 draw against Sligo on Sunday.

Birmingham started the brighter with Reece Brown curling an early effort narrowly wide of Kevin O’Brien’s left post before the impressive David Cotterill curled an almost identical effort just wide of the same post a minute later.

The vocal travelling army of Birmingham fans didn’t have long to wait for the opener when tough-tackling veteran defender Paul Robinson rose highest in the area to power home a Cotterill corner in the 10th minute.

Cork lost Darren Murphy, who went off with a dislocated shoulder, which he picked up while challenging Robinson for the goal.

It was all Birmingham now and O’Brien got down well to stop a shot from Reilly before Clayton Donaldson had the ball in the net when he headed home after Jonathan Grounds’ header came back off the post but the striker’s effort was ruled out for offside.

Cotterill, a new signing from Doncaster, was causing all sorts of problems for the City defence, and he had a great effort that was inches off target midway through the half as the Blues went in search of number two.

The home side went close eight minutes before the break when Rob Lehane fed Josh O’Shea, who cut inside before unleashing a venomous drive from inside the box that Doyle did well to beat away.

Birmingham, who only avoided relegation on the final day of the season in May, made 10 changes at half-time with only goalkeeper Colin Doyle remaining on the pitch.

Olly Lee hit the post with a piledriver from 25 yards five minutes into the second half before Paul Caddis had a smart effort that was inches wide.

O’Brien then made two neat stops to deny Mark Duffy on both occasions as the English side threated repeatedly.

The second goal did finally arrive in the 82nd minute when Caddis’ cross come shot flew into the top corner of O’Brien’s net before Lee Novak added a third two minutes from time from close range.

CORK CITY: O’Brien (Gledhill 83); G Kavanagh (Horgan 59), D Murphy (McSweeney 10), Murray, Neville (Coleman 68); Morrison (Forde 83), O’Leary (Kearney 45), J Kavanagh (Donnellan 83), O’Shea (D Morrissey 45); O’Flynn (DA Murphy 59), Lehane (Ellis 70).

BIRMINGHAM CITY (first-half): Doyle; Eardley, Hall, Robinson, Grounds; Brown, Gleeson, Reilly, Adeyemi, Cotterill; Donaldson.

BIRMINGHAM CITY (second-half): Doyle; Packwood, Edgar, Gunning, Hancox; Duffy, Spector, Lee, Caddis, Gray; Novak.

Referee: Graham Kelly (Cork).


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