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01 July 2020 Venue St. Andrew's Trillion Trophy Stadium Attendance

Kick off 18:00 (UK)

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English Football League - Championship

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Match Previews

MATCH PREVIEW: BIRMINGHAM CITY (A)

29 June 2020

All you need to know ahead of the trip to St. Andrew’s

- A preview for Birmingham City vs Huddersfield Town
- The lowdown on Pep Clotet’s side
- Watch the game on iFollow HTAFC

Huddersfield Town make the trip down to St. Andrew’s to face Birmingham City in the Sky Bet Championship on Wednesday 1 July 2020; 6pm kick-off.

Danny Cowley’s side will begin the new month in search of their first points since the season’s restart following defeats to Wigan Athletic and Nottingham Forest in recent weeks.

The game is Town’s first game of seven in a busy month of July that will see the conclusion to the Sky Bet Championship season.

The Terriers currently occupy a spot in the relegation zone following last weekend’s results and will be looking to get straight back out of the bottom three with a result in the West Midlands.

When the two sides met in the reverse fixture back in November, they couldn’t be separated, playing out a 1-1 draw at the John Smith’s Stadium with Fraizer Campbell on the scoresheet for Town.

THE OPPOSITION

There’s been promising signs in the games since the restart for Pep Clotet’s side, but like Town, they will also go into Wednesday’s game looking for their first win following the resumption.

It comes off the back of draws at promotion chasing West Bromwich Albion, and Hull City, with the latter of those games seeing them come back from 2-0 and 3-2 down to salvage a point on Saturday.

Two points from those two games has left them in 16th in the Sky Bet Championship table with 49 points from their 39 games, seven ahead of Town on 42.

Ahead of their second game in five days at St. Andrew’s, the Blues are without a win in their last four on home soil, drawing with Brentford, Sheffield Wednesday and Hull City whilst being beaten by Reading.

Draws have become a common theme for the Blues both before and after the lockdown too, finishing the game level with sides in six of their last seven league matches with their last win coming at Barnsley in February.

ONES TO WATCH

KRISTIAN PEDERSEN

Pedersen signed for the Blues back in 2018 from Union Berlin, having helped the German club to a third placed finish in the 2017/18 2. Bundesliga season. Since then, the left sided player, who can play either at the back or on the wing, has made over 80 appearances for the Club becoming a key part of the side both in the defensive and attacking phases. This season, the Dane has appeared in all but one of the Blues’ Sky Bet Championship fixtures, scoring four times and providing two assists.

Kristian Pederson.jpg

JUDE BELLINGHAM

The 17-year-old, who celebrated his birthday this week, came through Birmingham City’s youth ranks before making his First Team debut against Portsmouth in a Carabao Cup First Round tie earlier this season. The highly rated young midfielder has since been a mainstay in Pep Clotet’s senior side, enjoying a breakthrough season at St. Andrew’s that has included him winning the EFL’s Young Player of the Month back in November. Bellingham has also had an impressive year on the international stage, captaining the England Under-17s squad to victory in the Syrenka Cup in September, a competition that he also picked up the Player of the Tournament award in.

Jude Bellingham.jpg

LUKAS JUTKIEWICZ

The forward is well known to defenders across the Sky Bet Championship with 2019/20 the 10th season in which he has featured for a club in English football’s second tier. The 31-year-old signed for the Blues back in 2016 and has scored 44 goals in 166 games for the Club in nearly four seasons. 13 of those goals have come in this current campaign, with Jutkiewicz currently the Club’s top scorer in 2019/20 and only squad player to have appeared in every one of their Sky Bet Championship games to date in this campaign.

Lukas Jutkiewicz.jpg

TEAM NEWS – BIRMINGHAM CITY

Pep Clotet has been without the services of midfielder Ivan Šunjić and goalscorer in the reverse fixture Marc Roberts since the season’s resumption with thigh problems, with both likely to miss Wednesday’s game too.

The Blues will also check on the fitness of Jake Clarke-Salter ahead of the midweek encounter, after the defender was forced off before the end the draw with Hull City on Saturday.

TEAM NEWS – TOWN

Manager Danny Cowley is expected to provide an update on the fitness of Steve Mounié during his virtual press conference on Tuesday 30 June 2020.

Defender Tommy Elphick remains Town’s only long-term absentee (knee).

Juninho Bacuna will serve the first game of his three-match suspension following his red card in the defeat at Nottingham Forest.

KIT

Town will wear their fiery coral alternate kit for the game at St. Andrew’s – CLICK HERE to get yours!

iFollow HTAFC

2019/20 Season Card holders who have not taken a refund or e-credit will again have free access to the game.

Supporters who are not Season Card holders can buy a match pass to watch the game for £10 - click HERE for more info!

Town's match previews are sponsored by Stafflex!

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Match Reports

REPORT: BIRMINGHAM 0-3 TOWN

1 July 2020

Huddersfield Town picked up their first points since the Sky Bet Championship’s restart with an emphatic 3-0 win over Birmingham City at St. Andrew’s.

An early Karlan Grant penalty set the tone before second half goals from Fraizer Campbell and Elias Kachunga sealed the three points and rounded off a perfect evening’s work in the West Midlands.

With the Wednesday night encounter at St. Andrew’s the first of seven games across a busy month of July for Town, Danny Cowley made three changes to his starting XI from the one that was beaten by Forest at the weekend.

Emile Smith Rowe returned to the team whilst Elias Kachunga and Fraizer Campbell were brought in from the start for the first time since the restart, with the latter making his 300th career league appearance in the process. Fellow forward Steve Mounié also made a welcome return from injury, starting on the bench.

The game got underway in conditions far thought from an early evening in July, as the rain came down heavily upon kick-off at St. Andrew’s.

The weather didn’t dampen Town’s early spirits though, having the opposite effect in fact, as Town came out with an intent to their play.

Karlan Grant’s early two efforts, both going over the Birmingham crossbar, were Town’s first attempts on goal but it was Fraizer Campbell’s early chasing down of a back pass that really signalled the Terriers’ fight in the opening minutes.

Grant’s next effort on goal came from the spot, after some neat footwork inside the box saw him brought down by Harlee Dean and a penalty awarded to the Terriers.

Town’s top scorer stepped up to take the penalty and kept his composure to find the net despite Lee Camp’s best efforts, to give the visiting Terriers a 11th minute lead on the road.

A sustained period of pressure from the hosts followed, as did their first chance of the game. Lukas Jutkiewicz met Kristian Pedersen’s floated ball from the left, but the forward’s header was comfortably gathered by Jonas Lössl.

Jutkiewicz’s aerial presence continued to be prominent after the game’s first drinks break on 22 minutes. The Birmingham striker first headed over Daniel Crowley’s cross from the right before he was found by Pedersen again on the other side, but Lössl was equal to his glanced effort once more.

Having withstood a period of sustained pressure from the hosts at the end of the half, Town came out in the second rejuvenated in attack, just as they were early in the first half.

Like in that first 45, an encouraging start was rewarded with an opportunity from the spot. This time, it was Captain Christopher Schindler who was wrestled to the ground by Gary Gardner, with referee Rob Jones awarding Town with a second penalty of the encounter.

However, unlike earlier in the game, Grant couldn’t get the better of Camp. The Birmingham ‘keeper dived to his left, keeping out the spot-kick with an outstretched hand.

Just 52 seconds after the miss, Town did get the second goal and some breathing space at St. Andrew’s.

The returning Campbell marked his career landmark by meeting Harry Toffolo’s free-kick from the left and finding the bottom corner on the stretch to double the Terriers’ lead on 52 minutes.

The forward’s first Town goal away from the John Smith’s Stadium turned out to be his final bit of action in the game, as he was replaced by Steve Mounié on the hour.

More changes followed the second drinks break, but one thing that stayed the same was the quality of Toffolo’s free-kick delivery.

From a similar position to the one that had led to Town’s second goal, the left-back floated a ball to the back post, finding the head of the substitute Mounié who nodded back across goal for Elias Kachunga to glance into an empty net, putting Town into a 3-0 lead on 72 minutes.

At the other end, Jutkiewicz’s head continued to be Birmingham’s most likely route on to the scoreboard. The Birmingham forward rose highest at the back post to meet a cross from the right but couldn’t find the target with his latest effort on Lössl’s goal.

Danny Cowley asked in the week for a resilience and a robustness to Town’s play and he certainly got that from the Terriers, along with a creativity and an intent in their attacking play.

That creativity and intent was evident throughout the second half, and nearly brought a fourth in the closing stages on two occasions, but both Lewis O’Brien and substitute Alex Pritchard were denied by Camp.

Town were then able to preserve that clean sheet at the back in the final few minutes, wrapping up three important points that move the Terriers up to 19th and out of the relegation zone.

Next up for Town is a return to the John Smith’s Stadium to host Preston North End in the Sky Bet Championship on Saturday 4 July 2020; 3pm kick-off.

BIRMINGHAM CITY (4-4-2)

Lee Camp; Kristian Pedersen, Jake Clarke-Salter, Harlee Dean (c), Maxime Colin; Jérémie Bela, Gary Gardner, Jude Bellingham, Daniel Crowley; Scott Hogan, Lukas Jutkiewicz

Unused subs

Connal Trueman; Wes Harding, Marc Roberts, Maikel Kieftenbeld, Ivan Šunjić, Caolan Boyd-Munce, Ryan Burke, Ryan Stirk, Jayden Reid

HUDDERSFIELD TOWN (4-2-3-1)

Jonas Lössl; Harry Toffolo, Christopher Schindler (c), Richard Stearman, Demeaco Duhaney (Trevoh Chalobah, 82’), Lewis O’Brien, Jonathan Hogg, Karlan Grant (Alex Pritchard, 70’), Emile Smith Rowe (Andy King, 70’), Elias Kachunga (Collin Quaner, 82’), Fraizer Campbell (Steve Mounié, 60’)

Unused subs

Joel Coleman; Chris Willock, Jon Gorenc Stanković, Matty Daly

REFEREE

Rob Jones

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