The arrogant shame of a cross city transfer and how the divide is narrowing between Birmingham and Aston Villa
In recent years when a player moves across the Birmingham divide they have tended to make the move from Villa Park to St Andrews.
Craig Gardner and Liam Ridgewell are two such examples of players who had fallen out of favour at the traditionally more successful Villa, but found sanctuary in the arms of the Blues.
Thursday’s news then that Sebastian Larsson could be moving the other way as part of a swap deal plus cash for Curtis Davis has come as a bit of a surprise.
As an arrogant Villa fan, I have always seen Birmingham as the lesser of the two second city clubs, or at least that is the view from my high-horse, as Blues seemingly live in the shadows feeding off the scraps of unwanted personnel discarded by their more illustrious neighbours.
This though no longer seems to be the case, as this season the gap has significantly narrowed and perhaps the pendulum has even swung in favour of Alex McLeish’s side after their spirited fight back against West Ham ensured their trip to Wembley for the Other Cup final on Wednesday.
The league table is another barometer for the increasing competition between the two clubs, as despite Villa sitting four places and five points above their neighbours, Birmingham still have two games in hand.
Having suffered a tumultuous start to the season, Villa finally managed successive wins for the first time this campaign against City and Wigan.
This though has been too late to claim the local bragging rights, as two league draws and a defeat in the Other Cup have means that a blue flag is waving over Birmingham this season.
This in stark contrast to previous seasons, when Villa dominated the fixture, with a high point being our 5-1 victory in April 2008.
Larsson’s rumoured move then to Villa will be an experience that most fans will be unaccustomed to as if my memory serves me only two players have ever made the St Andrews-Villa Park switch and they were Geoff Vowden in 1971 and Alan Curbishley in 1983
Birmingham are seemingly experienced at welcoming in Villains in from the cold, so it won’t come as much of a culture shock for them, whose fans will now be hoping to cement local pride with their first major trophy since 1963.Tags: Aston Villa, Birmingham City
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