Many expect the Blues to be near the bottom of the division come the end of the season, with John Eustace’s side considered among the favourites for the Championship drop.
However, the club got themselves off to a decent start by holding Luton to a 0-0 draw at the weekend and goalkeeper John Ruddy has told Birmingham Live that he feels the club can be a ‘solid unit’ this campaign and can make themselves hard for other clubs to beat.
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Ruddy joins Birmingham in the Championship having spent the last three seasons in the Premier League with Wolves. In fact, the shot-stopper has played for the club since the 2017/18 campaign, when the Molineux outfit were promoted from the second tier.
Since the club were promoted to the top flight though, Ruddy has often struggled to feature. Last season he managed just two appearances in the Premier League for the side and overall managed five appearances in the division despite being a regular as they won Championship promotion.
Now though, the goalkeeper is back in the second tier with Birmingham and has already managed to get into the first-team, holding Luton to no goals in that fixture at the weekend. Now, with a solid point under his belt, Ruddy has told Birmingham Live that the Blues can be solid at the back this campaign and be hard to beat in the league.
He said: “The defensive unit was solid as a back five and that’s something the manager has brought in – we are going to solidify ourselves. We are going to be hard to beat, hard to break down, and we will build off that basis.
“Everyone stood up and was counted, it was a really encouraging start, and a good building block. It’s always nice as a goalkeeper to get a clean sheet, but it’s much more important for the team knowing that we have a solid foundation to build off.”
Not many Birmingham supporters would have likely expected to start off with a solid result against Luton, especially when you consider where the Hatters finished during the last campaign.
However, keeping a clean sheet and nabbing a point off a team like Luton is not a bad way for the Blues to start the new season and the club will be happy to start off like that. John Ruddy was solid in goal and the defence also held firm to ensure that the points between the two clubs were shared.
If Birmingham and their defence can keep up that standard throughout the season, then they may not end up near the relegation places. Granted, the season is fresh and there are plenty more games to be played so there could be plenty of goals shipped down the line.
However, with the Hatters having fared so well in the Championship and having some good talent, to keep them out in their first game is a good start for Birmingham this season.