Birmingham City manager Chris Hughton has urged his team to get over the disappointment of last Saturday’s defeat to Nottingham Forest and prepare to ‘go again’ against Derby County this weekend.
Blues will face Nigel Clough’s Rams at St Andrew’s in two days time and Hughton hopes there will be no hangover from the Forest game.
Last weekend’s defeat to the East Midland outfit halted Birmingham’s fantastic 15 match run and ended their impressive unbeaten home league record. But Hughton hopes his team will recover well from the set back.
“You can’t go through a season without having disappointments,” Hughton told the Birmingham Post. “I didn’t think we played well enough against Forest, but I still thought we would get something from the game. We’re a good team, we’ve been on a really good run.
“What happens with any good run that ends, any disappointment, you need to show character, pick yourselves up and go again.
“Fortunately for us, which is nice, we have had no game midweek for the first time in a long time. And it will be probably the only time right through to the end of the season.
“So it’s been about getting a good rest, a good recovery and then preparing to go again for the next one.”
Andros Townsend was given his debut from the start against Forest while Erik Huseklepp made his bow for the final 22 minutes.
“They both only did a couple of days training with us. Andros, you can see what he is – an out and out winger who gets crosses in. What we need to do is get bodies in box on the end of that. Perhaps it was a difficult game for him to come into, in that first-half period. But I think he showed enough.
“With Erik, we also saw what he is about. He has got that mobility, he will cover distance. They will both give us something.”
Townsend was signed as a replacement for the Wigan Athletic bound Jean Beausejour.
“He’s a player that I’ve known for a long time,” said Hughton.
“Having lost Jean Beausejour and Liam Ridgewell both from that left hand side it left us two players short and it was important that we replaced them with that type of quality and I believe we’ve done that in terms of Andros.
“He played very well against us at Leeds a few weeks ago. With Chris Burke playing on one side and Andros on the other it certainly gives us more of an attacking threat.”
Hughton continued: “We have players who can play on that left hand side in terms of Nathan Redmond, who’s a right-footed player, [and] Wade Elliott. Andros is more a like-for-like replacement for Jean. Jean was a player that did a good job for us on that left-hand side, but had an offensive threat. I see Andros as that straight replacement for him.”