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Aitor Karanka explains notable Birmingham absence from Bournemouth defeat

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Birmingham City manager Aitor Karanka says it was impossible to play Kristian Pedersen in his side’s 3-1 defeat to Bournemouth on Saturday due to concerns about the defender’s fitness.

Pedersen has featured in all but one of Birmingham’s league games this season prior to the defeat by The Cherries, but an issue that arose following Wednesday night’s defeat to Wycombe – in which Pedersen scored a stoppage time own goal – kept the Dane out of the weekend’s encounter.

Discussing the situation surrounding his wings backs for the Bournemouth game after the defeat, Karanka was quoted by The Birmingham Mail as saying of Pedersen: “Kristian couldn’t play because he had a problem in the last game.”

Explaining the details behind Pedersen’s absence further, it seems Karanka is hopeful that the full back will be available again after next week’s international break, as he went on to add: “He felt dizzy after the game, it was impossible for him to play. I hope he can train with us this week  or the following week.”

Following that defeat to Bournemouth, Birmingham go into the international break 17th in the Championship table, six points clear of the relegation zone.

Karanka’s side are set to return to action on the 20th November, when they take on Coventry City at St Andrew’s.

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The Verdict

This will no doubt be a concern for Birmingham with regards to Pedersen.

The 26-year-old has been a regular feature for the Blues after the past few seasons, and without him, they are rather short of established options for the left-hand side of their defence.

However, the fact that Karanka says his absence was down to dizziness suggests it may have been a head injury that kept him on the sidelines, which means it was the right thing to do in not playing him, due to the risk they would have been taking if he had started, or even been brought on from the bench.


UCLan Sports Journalism graduate, been writing for Football League World since March 2019. I've previously worked for the likes of Blackburn Rovers and Opta, among others.

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Article title: Aitor Karanka explains notable Birmingham absence from Bournemouth defeat

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