- West Brom’s in-form midfielder John Swift gave the Baggies an early lead
- Juninho Bacuna, Captain Dion Sanderson and Gary Gardner all scored for Blues
- Listen to the latest episode of the Mail Sport podcast ‘It all begins’
Birmingham City celebrated derby glory after capitalizing on a controversial penalty as they came from behind to beat rivals West Bromwich Albion at St Andrew’s.
Cedric Kipre’s clumsy strike on Koji Miyoshi was ruled a penalty by referee James Linington and Juninho Bacuna equalized in the 23rd minute.
From then on, John Eustace’s side had a different proposition as Dion Sanderson headed Blues ahead in the 38th minute before substitute Gary Gardner took third with a free-kick in the 87th minute.
John Swift put West Brom ahead in the sixth minute with his sixth goal of the season.
West Brom plead with referee James Linnington after he awarded a highly controversial penalty
Gary Gardner put the icing on the cake for Birmingham with a brilliantly taken free kick
Captain Dion Sanderson scored a brilliant header from an incredible cross from Cody Drameh
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The 28-year-old attacker coolly slid the ball into the net the first time from twenty meters from Grady Diangana’s square ball, with the shot coming in via the post.
The timing and precision of the attack meant goalkeeper John Ruddy had no chance to save Swift’s second goal of the week.
Some City fans thought they had equalized in the 12th minute, but Miyoshi’s shot from a tight angle soared high into the side netting after Adam Stansfield headed Bacuna’s corner over goal.
Birmingham leveled in the 23rd minute with a penalty that was hotly contested by West Brom’s players.
At first glance the decision seemed harsh, as Miyoshi fell before Kipre came at him anyway, but there was a consequence from the latter that probably shaped referee James Linington’s decision.
Bacuna made no mistake from the spot for his first Championship goal of the season, sending his kick low to the left of Alex Palmer, who dived in the opposite direction.
In a typical derby, the action varied from start to finish and a bouncing header from West Brom’s Alex Mowatt was held by Ruddy.
But it was Blues who dominated the rest of the half.
The lively Bacuna saw a low shot deflect just wide of Kyle Bartley before John Eustace’s side took the lead in the 38th minute.
Dion Sanderson headed high into the net from a deep cross from Cody Drameh, after West Brom had partially cleared a corner.
Sanderson, a former Wolves academy graduate, ran in front of the West Brom fans to celebrate enthusiastically.
West Brom missed a golden opportunity to equalize in the 59th minute.
Darnell Furlong slid in unnoticed at the far post, but his shot from six yards flew inches wide after Matt Phillips read out.
Furlong had another chance shortly afterwards, but his header from the far post flew straight at Ruddy.
But they needn’t have worried as Gardner curled in a glorious free-kick to seal Blues’ second home win in a week after Kipre was booked for bringing down substitute Scott Hogan in the D.
Juninho Bacuna celebrates his calmly taken penalty and equalized for Birmingham City
The in-form John Swift gave West Brom the lead, converting six of his last seven shots
Birmingham (4-2-3-1): Blushing 7; Drameh 7, Sanderson 7, Lange 6, Longelo 6; Bielik 6, Sunjic 6; Bacuna 8 (Gardner 82 minutes, 7), Miyoshi 7 (Burke 69 minutes, 6), Dembélé 6 (Jutkiewicz 72 minutes, 6); Stansfield 6 (Hogan 82 minutes, 6).
Subs not used: Etheridge, Roberts, James, Khela, Aiwu
Goals: Bacuna (P), Sanderson, Gardner
Manager: John Eustatius
West Brom (3-4-2-1): Palmer6; Kipré 5, Bartley 6, Pieters 6 (Townsend 46 minutes, 6) Furlong 7, Yokuslu 6 (Chalobah 65 minutes, 6), Mowatt 6, Phillips 7; Diangana 6, Swift 7 (Fellows 73 minutes, 6); J Wallace 6 (Thomas-Asante 65 minutes, 6).
Do not use subsD: Ajayi, Molumby, Ávila Gordón, Griffiths, Taylor.
Manager: Carlos Corberan
Referee: James Linnington6