Carabao Cup Preview | Birmingham City vs. Cardiff City
Cardiff City travel to Birmingham City in the second round of the Carabao Cup on Tuesday evening (29/08), 7.45pm KO.
OPPOSITION FOCUS | IN THE DUGOUT
The Blues’ manager is John Eustace, who was appointed head coach back in July 2022.
During his playing career, Eustace made an impression in the EFL, enjoying spells at the likes of Coventry City, Stoke City, Watford and Derby County.
Switching to management in 2016, Eustace has spent two years at Kidderminster Harriers, before also having assistant roles with Queens Park Rangers and the Republic of Ireland.
Since taking over at Birmingham City, Eustace has claimed 19 victories in his 55 matches in charge.
OPPOSITION FOCUS | SEASON SO FAR
The Blues opened their campaign with a 1-1 draw at Swansea City, in which summer recruit Siriki Dembélé got on the scoresheet.
An impressive result against Leeds United followed, as the contest was set for a goalless draw until Lukas Jutkiewicz netted an added-time penalty.
The striker again found the net in a 2-0 win at Bristol City, with Koji Miyoshi also scoring for the Blues.
In their most recent league fixture, John Eustace’s men defeated Plymouth Argyle, with Jay Stansfield netting a late winner.
The Blues made it to the second round of the Carabao Cup with a 2-0 win over Cheltenham Town.
OPPOSITION FOCUS | KEY PLAYER
Midfielder Ivan Šunjić has impressed since making the move to Birmingham City in 2019.
The Croatian international arrived at the club with great pedigree, having previously represented Croatian giants Dinamo Zagreb.
Operating as a defensive midfielder, Šunjić has accumulated over 100 league appearances for the Blues, scoring six goals.
After spending last season on loan at German side Hertha BSC, Šunjić has started every league game for Birmingham City so far this campaign.
CLUB CONNECTION | ROGER JOHNSON
After making an impression early in his career at Wycombe Wanderers, Johnson caught the attention of the Bluebirds and joined City in 2006.
The defender continued to shine, forming a strong partnership with Dutch centre-back Glenn Loovens.
Johnson had a notably impressive campaign in the 2007/28 season, scoring a memorable goal in the FA Cup Quarter-Final victory over Middlesbrough by heading home Peter Whittingham’s free-kick.
Featuring in all six of the Bluebirds’ games on the path to the FA Cup Final, Johnson earned the club’s Player of the Year Award at the end of the season.
After a fine spell with the Bluebirds, the defender moved to Birmingham City in June 2009, where he was more fortunate at Wembley, assisting Nikola Žigić’s opening goal as the Blues defeated Arsenal in the 2011 League Cup Final.