Marcus Bent has backed former teammate Lee Bowyer’s decision to swap Charlton Athletic for Birmingham City and revealed he is optimistic the Blues can stay up this season, speaking exclusively to Football League World.
Bowyer resigned from his role at the Valley to become Aitor Karanka’s permanent replacement in March and has made a fantastic start to life at St Andrew’s.
The Blues have picked up seven points from four games under their new boss – all against top six sides – but still find themselves in the middle of a tough relegation battle.
Bent played alongside Bowyer for the Blues and, speaking exclusively to Football League World, suggested he backed his decision to leave Charlton – a club the pair both represented – to move to St Andrew’s.
Asked about his former teammate, he said: “Lee Bowyer, what a player! I mean he had his faults, he had his anger management problems but playing with him after he’d been at Newcastle while at Birmingham, he’d matured.
“He’s showed his management skills to be a little bit like his play. Not aggressive but skillful and articulate in the way he puts his sides out.
“I think that’s why he did so well at Charlton. Coming from that part of the city, people knowing and the players respecting him for his career. I think he did well.
“I agree with the move to Birmingham because he needed to go on. I’m not going to say Birmingham are bigger than Charlton but I think he needed to move and go on and do something, keep Birmingham in the Championship.”
Bent also revealed he was optimistic that his former teammate could help the Blues avoid relegation.
He said: “I know Birmingham, the financial situation is not too good at the minute and it hasn’t been good for a long while but fingers crossed he can do well off the back of the win against Brentford the other night and they can go on and stay in the Championship.”
Birmingham’s next chance to boost their survival hopes will come on Saturday when they welcome Stoke City to St Andrew’s.