Ex-Sheffield Wednesday target and Birmingham City key man likely to miss Hillsborough clash

Birmingham City are expected to be without their new £2m striker for Saturday’s relegation six-pointer with Sheffield Wednesday.

Thursday, 18th February 2021, 12:00 pm

Under-fire Blues boss Aitor Karanka admitted Sam Cosgrove, who was fleetingly linked with a move to Hillsborough in the last transfer window, was injured in training ahead of their 2-0 defeat at Millwall in midweek.

Birmingham are below Wednesday in the table on goal difference and have played a game more than the Owls, with many having billed the match as a must-win for both sides. The Midlands side will arrive on a run of one win in their last 14 matches.

“He twisted his ankle yesterday,” Karanka said on Cosgrove. “I don’t know how long he is going to be out. I don’t think he is going to be ready for our next Saturday game.”

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Birmingham City manager Aitor Karanka has issues to deal with ahead of their trip to Sheffield Wednesday on Saturday.

In the big forward’s absence, Scott Hogan and Lukas Jutkiewicz started up front, with attackers Jeremie Bela, Ivan Sanchez and Jonathan Leko – another former Owls target – coming off the bench.

Birmingham have failed to score in eight of their last 11 matches. Amid rising concerns over their ability to score enough goals, Karanka was asked how their goalscoring record could improve.

“I don’t know,” he said. “The only thing I can do is to work harder, I think these 2-3 days we have done the training session with more shooting exercises.

“I have put today Scotty and Jukey up front, Sam Cosgrove got injured yesterday, so he couldn’t come today. We didn’t have other alternatives and I just tried to put the players who were playing like Leko or Jeremie or Ivan.

“I am trying to play as much as possible.

“Players who are playing today Jukey and Scotty are quality, for sure they will score goals and I will have to encourage them to keep working because as a striker if you are not scoring goals it is normal to lose your confidence and in that situation it is even harder. They know that I trust the and trust everybody and it is just to keep encouraging them.”

Despite Tuesday’s defeat at Millwall, Wednesday will surely go into the clash with confidence having won their last five league matches, conceding only once in that time.

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