The EFL Championship enters matchday two this weekend as Birmingham City and Huddersfield Town are set to meet each other at the St. Andrews Stadium on Friday the 5th of August. The last time these two teams faced each other was in February 2022, and it was the Terriers who came out on top with a 2-0 win at the same venue. Coming into this game, Birmingham drew goalless at Kenilworth Road against Luton Town, and Huddersfield lost 0-1 to Vincent Kompany’s Burnley on the opening day of the season.
Watch out for these three stats, as they’re most likely to affect this game’s outcome.
Birmingham had three shots on target out of 10 in their last match. Auston Trusty came the closest to scoring for the Blues in the 49th minute when his shot had an xG of 0.19 but was blocked by a Luton Town player. Maxime Colin and Przemyslaw Placheta were the only two players who tested the opposition keeper. It is clear that Birmingham need to improve on their ability to hit the target. Otherwise, they will be set for more disappointment.
Huddersfield’s attack was nullified by Burnley in their last match as they could attempt only two shots, of which one was blocked and the other went off target. Danny Ward came the nearest to score but flew just over the crossbar. That shot had an xG of 0.16. This is something that the Terriers would like to fix in the upcoming fixtures. Huddersfield’s finishing ability needs to improve by a lot if they are to win this game. Else, one can expect more of the same.
Birmingham attempted 18 crosses in the match but completed only one-third (six) of them. Placheta made two and four other players (Maxime Colin, Juninho Bacuna, Dion Sanderson and Jordan James) made one cross each. One can expect the Blues to attempt as many crosses in this game as they did in their previous game.
Huddersfield completed only one cross out of six attempts in their previous game against Burnley as Vincent Kompany’s men successfully neutralised the wingers and wing-backs. The only successful cross was made by Turton. The Terriers will also need to make amends and improvements in their ability to cross the ball. Otherwise, they need to find other ways to threaten the opposition teams.
Touches in Box:
Birmingham made 11 touches inside Luton’s penalty area in the last match. This amounts to one every 8.18 minutes on average. Roberts registered three touches and Colin two. Others who touched the ball were Troy Deeney, Scott Hogan and Juninho Bacuna. While 11 touches inside the box is not bad, the Blues will still need to try and increase that number if they are to get themselves into good positions.
Huddersfield had only seven touches in the penalty area last time out. Jack Rudoni had three, Danny Ward two, and Tom Lees and Josh Koroma had one each. The Terriers averaged one touch every 12.86 minutes. Seven touches inside the box is too little for a team that wants fight it at the top half of the table, if not even a spot in the playoffs. So, there needs to be massive improvements from the team going forward.
After not getting off to a winning start, Birmingham City and Huddersfield Town will be looking to register their first wins in this match. However, while the Terriers struggled to regularly test the Burnley keeper, Birmingham’s John Ruddy was the main man for Birmingham in their draw against Luton, saving shots and loose balls. The Blues are the slight favourites for this match.
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