Birmingham City enjoyed a decent 2020 under Pep Clotet, although too many draws means that they already seem set for another season in the Championship.
The undoubted positive since the New Year was the 13-game unbeaten run across all competitions that saw Blues avoid defeat for over three months.
Whilst there were many factors behind that success, there’s no denying that Clotet’s decision to bring Lee Camp back into the team was significant.
The experienced keeper, who joined the club at the start of last season, hasn’t truly convinced since he pulled on a Blues shirt.
Even though he was capable of pulling off a great save and his experienced helped on occasions, the brutal reality is that he made far too many mistakes. So, when Clotet gave Connal Trueman a chance earlier in the campaign, it was a call many agreed with.
The youngster did okay stepping up but he too made errors and with the team struggling, the boss reverted back to Camp and the 35-year-old has been in inspired form since.
His leadership has helped those in the back four but more importantly, Camp has cut out the mistakes that had impacted his game.
Whether it’s the fact he was dropped giving him the wake up call he needed or just that he is in a good run of form, Clotet will have been delighted with how his number one has performed over the past few months.
Yet, it has also presented the boss with a problem – because Camp’s contract is up in the summer.
At Christmas time, the answer would have been easy. The former Derby stopper needed to go and the whole goalkeeping department needed shaking up. But, now? It’s not so easy.
Not only is Camp playing well but the professional manner in which he handled his removal from the team, supported Trueman and still bounced back suggests he is a positive influence in the dressing room as well.
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So, keeping him as a backup would surely appeal to Blues but that might not make sense financially and the prospect of sitting on the bench over the course of the season may not be what Camp wants.
The enforced break means that this is no longer a pressing matter for Clotet but it’s still something that needs to be addressed in the coming months and Camp deserves huge credit for the fact that the club now have a tough decision to make.
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