Saturday, October 13, 2012

The following season the club lost

The following season the club lost in the FA Cup semifinal for the third time since the war, this time beaten 2–0 byManchester United's "Busby Babes".

Birmingham became the first English club side to take part in European competition when they played their first group game in the inaugural Inter-Cities Fairs Cup competition on 15 May 1956; Sony VAIO VGN-SR11M Battery

they went on to reach the semifinal where they drew 4–4 on aggregate with Barcelona, losing the replay 2–1. They became the first English club side to reach the final of a European competition, losing 4–1 on aggregate to Barcelona in the 1960 final and 4–2 to Roma in 1961 .In the 1961 semifinal they beat Internazionale home and away; Sony VAIO VGN-SR11MR Battery

no other English club won a competitive game in the San Siro until Arsenal were successful more than 40 years later.[29]

Under manager Gil Merrick, appointed in 1960, league form was uninspired, but the new League Cup competition introduced in the 1960–61 season provided an alternative. Entry was optional; several top-flight clubs chose not to enter, but Birmingham did so from the first year. Sony VAIO VGN-SR140D Battery

In 1963, while avoiding relegation to the Second Division only by winning two of their last three matches, they showed their best form in reaching the final of the new cup competition. The opponents, local rivals Aston Villa, were clear pre-match favourites, having won their most recent league meeting 4–0. But in the home leg Birmingham Sony VAIO VGN-SR140D/B Battery

"served up a treat of attacking football ... controlling the game with such assurance that their supporters must have wondered why the team had performed so badly in the First Division",[31] and came out comfortable 3–1 winners, with two goals from Ken Leek and one from Jimmy Bloomfield. Inspired by captain Trevor Smith, who man-marked Bobby Thomson out of the game in the away leg, Sony VAIO VGN-SR140D/P Battery

a solid defensive performance[33] saw Birmingham lift their only major trophy to date. In 1964–65, after ten years in the top flight, they returned to the Second Division.

Businessman Clifford Coombs took over as chairman in 1965, and lured Stan Cullis, manager of Wolverhampton Wanderers in their glory days, out of retirement to manage the club. Sony VAIO VGN-SR140D/S Battery

Cullis's team played attractive football; he led them to the semifinals of the League Cup in 1967 and the FA Cup in 1968, but league football had changed since the 1950s, and the club needed promotion. Coombs persuaded Cullis back into retirement, approached Brian Clough and Peter Taylor and then Don Revie without success, finally appointing Brighton manager Freddie Goodwin. Sony VAIO VGN-SR140E Battery

Goodwin livened the club up; he added Roger Hynd in defence, Alan Campbell in midfield, Bob Hatton to play up front alongside the home-grown Bob Latchford and introduced the 16-year-old Trevor Francis to first team football. In 1971–72, Birmingham won promotion to the First Division and reached the semifinal of the FA Cup, playing skilful, aggressive football that attracted the fans; Sony VAIO VGN-SR140E/B Battery

average home league attendance rose to over 32,000.[35] The club still needed to raise money. In February 1974, Everton came in with a bid for Latchford; though Goodwin held out for a British record fee – £80,000 cash plus players Howard Kendalland Archie Styles, a deal valued at £350,000 – the team struggled without such a goalscorer. Sony VAIO VGN-SR140E/P Battery

The next season they again reached the FA Cup semifinal, this time losing a replay to Second Division Fulham, to a goal scored in the last seconds of extra time as the ball trickled over the line having rebounded off John Mitchell from goalkeeper Dave Latchford's clearance.[37]

Sir Alf Ramsey briefly managed the club before Jim Smith took over in 1978, creating a stir by signing Argentina's World Cup-winning fullback Alberto Tarantini. Sony VAIO VGN-SR140E/S Battery

With relegation a certainty – the first league win came nearly three months into the season[38] – the club sold Trevor Francis to Nottingham Forest, making him the first £1 million player;[39] Francis had scored a total of 133 goals in 329 appearances over his nine years at Birmingham.[40]

Smith invested the proceeds of the Francis sale in experience, bringing in Archie Gemmill, Sony VAIO VGN-SR140N/S Battery

Colin Todd, Frank Worthington and Jeff Wealands, and took Birmingham straight back to the First Division in 1980. A poor start to the 1981–82 season saw Smith dismissed, to be replaced by Ron Saunders, who had just resigned from league champions and local rivals Aston Villa. This did not go down well on either side of the city. Sony VAIO VGN-SR165E/B Battery

Saunders assembled a team full of "hard men" – Mick Harford, Noel Blake, Robert Hopkins – which struggled to score goals, in two years average attendance had dropped to just over 14,000 and they were relegated again.[43]

They bounced back up, but promotion came at a cost. Sony VAIO VGN-SR165E/P Battery

The last home game of the 1984–85 season against Leeds United was marred by rioting, culminating in the death of a boy when a wall collapsed on him; this was on the same day as the Bradford City stadium fire, and the events at St Andrew's formed part of the remit of Mr Justice Popplewell's inquiry into safety at sports grounds. Sony VAIO VGN-SR165E/S Battery

After a long period without a win, and defeat to Altrincham in the FA Cup, Saunders quit. The club was in trouble financially; the Coombs family sold out to Ken Wheldon, former Walsall chairman, staff cuts followed both on and off the field, and the training ground was sold. By 1989, average attendance was down to 6,200 and the club was down in the Third Division for the first time in their history. Sony VAIO VGN-SR190EBJ Battery

In 1989 Wheldon sold the club to the Kumar brothers, owners of a Manchester-based clothing chain, who said they would invest in the team. Dave Mackay replacedGarry Pendrey as manager. His first season was one of getting used to lower-division football, the second brought the prospect of further relegation, terrace protests, Sony VAIO VGN-SR190EBQ Battery

the resignation of Mackay and his staffand introduction of Lou Macari as manager, and a successful trip to Wembley in the Leyland DAF Cup. Macari and his backroom staff walked out to join Stoke City,[47] an action group was formed to try and remove the chairman, and many of the playing staff were out of contract and reluctant to renew. Sony VAIO VGN-SR190EEJ/C Battery

The next manager, Terry Cooper, delivered promotion via a combination of a professional approach and sound signings, some of which were paid for with money raised by supporters. Off the field, Cooper and Kumar were at odds; the team needed the promised investment but the club was heavily in debt and losing money. Sony VAIO VGN-SR190NAB Battery

The collapse of the Bank of Credit and Commerce International (BCCI) put the Kumars' businesses into receivership; in November 1992 BCCI's liquidator put up for sale their 84% holding in the football club.[49] Though several groups expressed interest, the club continued in administration for four months, until Sport Newspapers proprietor David Sullivan bought it for £700,000. Sony VAIO VGN-SR190NBB Battery

Sullivan installed the 23-year-old Karren Brady as managing director and allowed Cooper money for signings. On the last day of the season, the team avoided relegation back to the third tier.[51]

A poor start to the 1993–94 season saw Cooper's resignation, to be replaced by Barry Fry. Sony VAIO VGN-SR190NDB Battery

Birmingham were fined by the Football League and ordered to pay compensation to Southend United after being found guilty of poaching Fry and his staff,[52] though the change of manager did not prevent relegation. At the end of the season, the Kop and Tilton Road sections of St Andrew's were demolished, to be re-opened the next season as all-seater stands. Sony VAIO VGN-SR190NEB Battery

The season ended with promotion back to the second tier and victory in the Auto Windscreens Shield at Wembley. Birmingham beat Carlisle United with a golden goal scored by Paul Tait, the first time this method had been used to settle a senior final in England.[54] After one more year, Fry was sacked to make way for the return of Trevor Francis. Sony VAIO VGN-SR190NGB Battery

Fry used no fewer than 47 players in his last season;[55] Francis set about introducing some stability. He mixed top-flight experience – Paul Furlong, Gary Ablett and Manchester United skipper Steve Bruce – with promising youth – Dele Adebola, Peter Ndlovu, Darren Purse – and in his second season the club narrowly missed out on a play-off position. Sony VAIO VGN-SR190PAB Battery

Off the field, the third side of the ground, the Railway End, was modernised. Then followed three years of play-off semifinal defeats, to Watford on penalties, Barnsley on aggregate, then Preston North End on penalties.[56]

They reached the 2001 League Cup final against Liverpool, the first major final played at Cardiff's Millennium Stadium during the construction of the newWembley Stadium. Sony VAIO VGN-SR190PCB Battery

Birmingham equalised Robbie Fowler's opening goal with a Purse penalty in the last minute of normal time, then referee David Elleray failed to award another penalty during extra time when Andrew Johnson was tripped. The match went to a penalty shootout which Liverpool won.[57]

By October 2001, lack of progress had made Francis's position untenable. After a 6–0 League Cup defeat to Manchester City, he left by mutual consent. Sony VAIO VGN-SR190PFB Battery

Coaches Mick Mills and Jim Barron acted as caretaker managers while the battle to secure Steve Bruce's release from employers Crystal Palace reached the High Court.[59] Bruce shook up a stale team, taking them from mid-table into the play-offs. This time they were successful, beating Millwall on aggregate in the semifinal and in the final, again at Cardiff, beating Norwich City on penalties to take the club back to the top flight after 16 years away. Sony VAIO VGN-SR19VN Battery

Bruce strengthened the team significantly, adding Kenny Cunningham, Clinton Morrison, Senegal World Cup captain Aliou Cissé and the combative Robbie Savage. After starting the season well, they faded when the small squad was hit by injury and suspension. Sony VAIO VGN-SR19VN Battery

Further reinforcement in the January transfer window, buying Matthew Upson, Stephen Clemence and Jamie Clapham and signing the inspirational Christophe Dugarry on loan, resulted in a comfortable finish in 13th place, above local rivals Aston Villa whom they had beaten home and away. Sony VAIO VGN-SR19VRN Battery

The start of the 2003–04 campaign saw Birmingham never out of the top six. Loan signing Mikael Forssell's 17 League goals helped them to a top half finish, but performances and results tailed off badly towards the end of the season. First-team coach Mark Bowen was sacked and replaced by former Coventry City managerEric Black. Sony VAIO VGN-SR19XN Battery

International class players were signed – Jesper Grønkjær, Emile Heskey, Mario Melchiot – but an injury to Forssell left them struggling for goals. Aided by transfer window loan signings Jermaine Pennant, Mehdi Nafti and Walter Pandiani, another mid-table finish ensued. Sony VAIO VGN-SR19XN Battery

Before the 2005–06 season, chairman David Gold said it was time to "start talking about being as good as anyone outside the top three or four" with "the best squad of players for 25 years".[65] Forssell, Nafti, Pandiani and Pennant had signed permanently, Nicky Butt and Jiří Jarošík joined on loan, but the first seven home games produced just one point. Sony VAIO VGN-SR210J/S Battery

Injuries, lack of form, and a lack of investment during the transfer window saw them facing the second half of the season with a strike-force of Heskey, an injury-prone Chris Sutton and the lively but inexperienced DJ Campbell. They suffered a 7–0 home defeat to Liverpool in the FA Cup quarter-final and by the last game of the season were already relegated.[66] Sony VAIO VGN-SR21M/S Battery

Heskey and Pennant left for record fees,[17][67] many more were released,[68] though Bruce was not. The board concluded that "Steve is the right man to achieve this ambition" of immediate promotion.[69] A new recruitment strategy was adopted, combining young "hungry" players – Cameron Jerome, Gary McSheffrey – with loan signings – the Arsenal trio Nicklas Bendtner, Sony VAIO VGN-SR21RM/H Battery

Fabrice Muamba and Sebastian Larsson – and free-transfer experience – Radhi Jaïdi, Bruno N'Gotty. An up-and-down season had calls for the manager's head in October, topping the table and beating Newcastle United 5–1 on their own ground in January,[70] no league games for a month due to freak postponements, culminating in automatic promotion.[71] Sony VAIO VGN-SR21RM/S Battery

In July 2007, Hong Kong-based businessman Carson Yeung bought 29.9% of shares in the club, making him the biggest single shareholder, with a view to taking full control in the future.[72] On the field, the club prepared for the 2007–08 season by making eight permanent and four loan signings, most notably former Frenchinternational Olivier Kapo, Sony VAIO VGN-SR220J/B Battery

Dutch U-21 winger Daniël de Ridder, Aston Villa defender Liam Ridgewell, and Arsenal defender Johan Djourou on loan.

Bruce resigned in November 2007 to take up the post of manager of Wigan Athletic.[73] Alex McLeish stepped down as Scottish national coach to become his replacement. Sony VAIO VGN-SR220J/H Battery

Birmingham finished 19th in the end of the season, ultimately being relegated. This was largely due to a poor away record, highlighted by a 5–1 defeat to Aston Villa. At the last game of the season there was a pitch invasion, with chants of the board being sacked and frustration at a lack of money being invested in the club. Sony VAIO VGN-SR240J/B Battery

David Sullivan blamed it on Bruce's silly buys in the transfer market and blasted players like Franck Queudrue, calling him a waste of money.

Promotion was achieved at the first attempt in 2008–09, when they finished second in the Championship behind local rivals Wolverhampton Wanderers. Sony VAIO VGN-SR240N/B Battery

They had a strong return to the Premier League and eventually finished ninth – their highest finish for decades.[75] In January 2011, Birmingham qualified for the League Cup final at Wembley Stadium after a 4–3 aggregate win against West Ham United, their first major Wembley final for 55 years.[ They beat favourites Arsenal 2-1 with goals from Nikola Žigić and Obafemi Martins, Sony VAIO VGN-SR290JTH Battery

to win only the second major trophy in their history.[78] At the end of the season, Birmingham were relegated to the Championship, finishing on 39 points.

The City of Birmingham Stadium is a proposed multi-purpose stadium in the Saltley area of Birmingham, Sony VAIO VGN-SR290JTJ Battery

West Midlands, England, originally for Warwickshire County Cricket Club and Birmingham City F.C., to replace the current St Andrews Stadium. The cricket club cancelled these plans however, and only the football club remains interested. The original proposal was the centrepiece of a larger scheme to create a £300 million sports village on a 60-acre (240,000 m2) site. Sony VAIO VGN-SR290JTQ Battery

The proposed stadium and sports village is to be located on a site currently occupied by Birmingham Wheels in the 'Wheels Adventure Park' of the Saltley area of Birmingham. The site is bounded by several active railway lines, a canal and numerous major roads.[2]

In relation to other areas, the site is near the St Andrews neighbourhood of Bordesley Green which is home to the St Andrews Stadium. Sony VAIO VGN-SR290JVB/C Battery

The stadium is to the southwest of the development. Small Heath is to the south whilst Nechells is located to the west and Aston to the north. It is 1.1 miles (1.77 kilometres) fromBirmingham New Street station in the city centre.

Phase 1 covers the Wheels Adventure Park and will include the stadium within it. In terms of area, it is almost equal to that of Phase 2. Sony VAIO VGN-SR290JVH/C Battery

Phase 1 would require the least amount of demolition as the land is largely untouched by development. The northern boundary of Phase 1 is determined by the Rugby-Birmingham-Stafford Line which serves the area via the nearby Adderley Park railway station. The western boundary is determined by another railway line and partially by a canal whilst the eastern boundary is determined by a road. Sony VAIO VGN-SR290NTB Battery

Phase 2, to the south, is the separated from Phase 1 via the boundary of land owned by Birmingham Wheels. Within the phase will be a soccer dome, indoor arena, basketball courts, health and fitness centre, Olympic-sized swimming pool and an entertainment complex, which will be attached to the stadium. Some residences and retail space would also be provided. Sony VAIO VGN-SR29VN/S Battery

Phase 2 is the most southerly phase of the development and is a predominantly industrial site. Occupied by many workshops and warehouses, it will require some of the most demolition needed for the project. This part of the sports village would be home to community football pitches, tennis courts, residences, a hotel and large retail space. Sony VAIO VGN-SR29XN/S Battery

The southern and eastern boundaries are determined via roads and the small western boundary, via a railway line.

Phase 3 is the smallest phase in terms of area and would be used for the construction of residential properties and park land. Sony VAIO VGN-SR2RVN/S Battery

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