Aitor Karanka has batted away suggestions that he could resign from his job at the helm of Birmingham City following another disappointing result – this time away at Wycombe Wanderers.
Following the Chairboys’ 7-2 drubbing away at Brentford on Saturday, Blues fans were expecting their side to go to Adams Park with all three points in their sights.
But the positivity wore off as soon as the line-up came out, with Karanka choosing to play a midfield three of Mikel San Jose, Ivan Sunjic and Gary Gardner – which some fans saw as unnecessarily negative.
For all of Birmingham’s domination – they had 18 shots to Wycombe’s three – they couldn’t find the back of the net, and their spirits were dampened even further with a red card to Marc Roberts just three minutes before the 90 were up.
Up until that point, the Spaniard had not made a substitute to try and change the game, and only once Roberts was given his marching orders did he make a switch – taking off the creative Ivan Sanchez for defender George Friend.
It went down with Birmingham fans like a lead balloon and if there wasn’t apathy beforehand, there was now, with Karanka getting it in the neck from fans for the goalless draw.
And when asked if he would resign from the club post-match if things continued to stay the same, Karanka responded in a defiant mood.
Quiz: Did each of these 18 ex-Birmingham City players ever score a goal at St Andrew’s?
“Step away me? No chance. No, no, no. I came here again, I am not finding an easy job but again it is nothing that I didn’t know,” Karanka told the Birmingham Mail.
“When you have players like them that are committed, a CEO and everybody as committed as here, I have to keep going and to show because now I am the reflection of the changing room.
“If I am strong, the changing room will be strong and we are strong together.
“In my life, most of the times when something is not going well, the people, especially the players who are not experienced need support.
“So we have to do our work”
It’s clear to everyone that something isn’t quite working at Birmingham right now, and they are stuck in a major rut.
21st in the Championship with all the teams below them having games in hand, strikers that aren’t scoring and some baffling tactical decisions are not mixing together well whatsoever, and the arrival of both Sam Cosgrove and Rekeem Harper needs to change something immediately.
The Blues have won just one of their last 10 league games, and a poor result on Saturday against newly-managerless Bournemouth could force the ownership’s hand into making a decision.