Birmingham City 1 Leeds United 3: YEP Jury verdict

Michael Tonge.
Michael Tonge.
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Our YEP Jurors give their verdict on United’s victory at Birmingham

Jonathan Ford

Age: 23

United fan for 19 years

Lives: Beeston

It is a good way to end on the last away day of a season that has been hard to take ... but on to next season.

It’s hard to walk away no matter how tough things get because Leeds United, once caught, is something you have for life … and the only cure is going to watch them.

Admittedly it does spoil your weekend when you lose, but for the split second when you take a lead, when three points are secured, the feeling of those moments, well, only the birth of my son can surpass that.

People always say to me football is just a game, but I can assure you it really isn’t. When you can forge friendships and relationships as I have you realise that getting up to watch Leeds isn’t just about football, its about being part of a family.

Everyone who I see at football and who I talk to on a regular basis about Leeds agree we are in this together, the only thing certain about Leeds is that we are here, we are the best fans in the world.

Leeds United is part of my life, and I just hope the next step is a positive one.

It was a typical end-of-season away game for Leeds, nothing to play for, but for some reason we picked up three points and played some half decent football.

We didn’t really create much in the first half and they were guilty of missing a couple of chance but apart from a one on one we were very rarely troubled.

In the second half we controlled things and a great cross to Matt Smith allowed him to do what he does best. Then the next few minutes were a complete whirlwind, with a great finish from Danny Pugh and a one-on-one from Michael Brown – where did it come from? But I wasn’t complaining.

Three points thoroughly deserved, Birmingham are in trouble. Finally I’d like to say thanks to my friends who have put up with me during the defeats because I am aware that I don’t snap out of moods for days when we have lost, and my fiancée Jenny who has taken me to all of the away games does deserve a lot of credit.

Hopefully my wedding next year will coincide with a Leeds United promotion, and the blue, yellow and white theme will be fitting for a celebration on two fronts.

Onwards to next season!

Man of the match: Danny Pugh.

Keith Ingham

Age: 52

United fan for 38 years

Lives: Keighley

Leeds United completed the double over lowly Birmingham City. Three second-half goals were enough to leave the east Midlands club in severe trouble with only two games to play.

Brian McDermott made two changes for the visit to St Andrews, Danny Pugh and Matt Smith coming in for Stephen Warnock and Noel Hunt. Zac Thompson was included on the bench, the first time he’s been in the match-day squad since August.

In a lively, if disjointed first half, both teams set out to test each other but the half ended goalless.

Birmingham tried to gain the upper hand with early sorties into the Leeds half but with nearly a hour gone Michael Tonge delivered a cross for Matt Smith to use his height and score with a good header. Within minutes it was two, Danny Pugh sending a shot past the the hapless keeper. Two goals so quick gave Birmingham a mountain to climb, with 20 minutes left it became Everest when Caddis expertly put into his own goal.

The only blot on a good away win was a serious looking injury to young Leeds midfielder Alex Mowatt. It is hoped it’s not as bad as it looked. The youngster looked in agony.

Three wins in four is quite the boost the manager needed.

A decent performance and, as always, the supporters were brilliant.

Man of the match: Matt Smith.

Michael Hemsworth

Age: 29

United fan for 18 years

Lives: Leeds.

A 3-1 win at St Andrews plunged Birmingham into the relegation zone and gave Brian McDermott a much-needed boost with Benito Carbone looking on.

The official line suggests Carbone is being lined up for a role running the academy, but even if that were the case his presence would no doubt lead to ongoing speculation about him stepping into McDermott’s shoes.

How Leeds would love Carbone to find a player in his own mould to break through into this side. This was an improved performance from Monday, but in truth, we were playing the worst team we have seen all season.

Man of the match: Michael Tonge.

Elliot Bransby

Age: 24

United fan for 18 years

Lives: Alwoodley

That’s now three wins from four but against poor teams and Birmingham look in real trouble.

It should be an interesting week ahead with season ticket prices announced and the Benito Carbone situation due to be ironed out.

Man of the match: The loyal away fans all season.

Stephen Clark

Age: 41

United fan for 23 years

Lives: Shipley

Leeds United at least gave their long-suffering but loyal away support a well-deserved victory at Birmingham.

A three-goal burst in the second half stunned not only the opposition but many of the watching fans as for just a brief few minutes United gave a glimpse of what might have been. Matt Smith has enjoyed playing Birmingham, netting a double at Elland Road in the 4-0 win and he opened the scoring on Saturday with a fine header. Two minutes later Danny Pugh fired home and with 12 minutes to go Paul Caddis put through his own goal. It was a third win in four matches, and, after the season we’ve had, any positive result is gladly taken.

Man of the match: Matt Smith.

Gary Newbould

Age: 42

United fan for 41 years

Lives: York

United secured a comfortable victory at St Andrews to pile more relegation pressure on the hosts. Birmingham have now not won at home for 18 games and look in big trouble whilst United could know this week if they have a new manager.

Man of the match: Luke Murphy.

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