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Ian Holloway makes Aitor Karanka claim in wake of Birmingham City struggles

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Birmingham City’s current struggles are likely to be getting to manager Aitor Karanka, Ian Holloway has claimed.

Having been appointed as the Blues new manager back in the summer, Karanka has found it difficult to get results during his time at St Andrew’s so far.

As things stand, Birmingham are currently second from bottom of the Championship table, having picked up just 28 points in 29 league games this season, with Saturday’s 1-0 defeat at home to Luton meaning they have now won just one of their last 12 league games.

Now it seems as though that is something that Holloway believes will be taking its’ toll on Karanka, as he searches for an upturn in the club’s fortunes.

Speaking about the Birmingham boss on The EFL on Quest highlights show on Saturday night, Holloway said: “He said it himself (that they’re relegation candidates) which is unlike Aitor. He’s a friend of mine. I like Aitor. He’s a fantastic manager.

“Sometimes it gets to you. If you are telling the players and they’re not doing their jobs, sometimes it’s very difficult.”

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Indeed, it seems Holloway feels that the situation behind the scenes at Birmingham will not be helping Karanka either, with the former Blackpool and QPR boss adding: “They’ve had problems at home for a lot of managers, not just Aitor, but I think there’s a dual problem. I don’t think the fans are happy with the management above him.

“Managing above at that club is very difficult. Yes we have the players and you’re asking questions of them, but how do you get out of your board what you want?”

Next up for Karanka and his struggling Birmingham side is a trip to The Den to face Millwall on Wednesday night.

The Verdict

It is hard to argue with what Holloway is saying about Karanka here.

When things have been going so badly for you for so long, as they have done for Karanka at Birmingham, it is hard not to get too down about things as they are.

However, as Holloway points out here, it is not just Karanka who has struggled at Birmingham recently, with the likes of Gianfranco Zola and Garry Monk also struggling at St Andrew’s, meaning you can understand his apparent suggestion that it may be more than just the manager who is at fault for the club’s problems.

As a result, it does seem as though there is plenty that needs to change at St Andrew’s going forward if they are to have a chance of avoiding relegation to League One, potentially in more than just a single are of the club.


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: Ian Holloway makes Aitor Karanka claim in wake of Birmingham City struggles

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