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5 THINGS WE LEARNED FROM BLUES' 2-1 WIN OVER ROTHERHAM.

BLUES finally reached the 50-point mark on Friday to all but guarantee safety after edging relegation-threatened Rotherham 2-1 at St.

Andrew's. Here's five things we've learned from the victory, including a couple of ideas to ponder as Blues head to the Goldsands today. ? 1. Clayton Donaldson is one of the free signings of the Championship this season: The big striker was excellent again on Friday, and deservedly Man of the Match. He added another goal, and also picked up an assist for his lay-off to Robert Tesche.

All over the pitch, the 31-year old has proved useful. He gives his side an outlet when the defenders need a breather, and wins some crucial headers in his own area defending set-pieces. ? 2. It was great to see Michael Morrison back: Morrison has been missing since January and, although he wasn't able to mark his return with a clean sheet, he at least oversaw a win.

Alongside Rob Kiernan, it's the central defensive pairing most Blues fans wanted to see, but Rowett was quick to point out post-match that Paul Robinson and injured duo Jonathan Spector and Gavin Gunning are also excellent options. ? 3. Gypsy curse? What gypsy curse?: Season ticket holders at St. Andrew's probably find it to be more entertainment than a chore to attend home matches these days. After winning only twice at home last season, they've won seven at home under Gary Rowett since November. ? 4. This is a 'new' Blues team. So beware Bournemouth: Revenge wouldn't come much sweeter than victory today to derail the Cherries' promotion chase. Rowett has challenged his players to lay the ghost of the 8-0 defeat, the lowest point in Blues' living memory, to rest.

There is a defensive stability now and, bar the Boxing Day defeat to Derby, Blues don't look like conceding anywhere near as regularly as previously. ? 5. The place has generally changed. The atmosphere, attitude, and the results are evidence: Lee Clark once said Nikola Zigic put in the worst training session he'd ever seen, back when he was walking into the team.

On Friday, when Rowett informed the Serb that know he wouldn't be in the squad, he accepted the news and admitted it was fine, as long as the team 'got three points'.

The attitude of the squad is first-rate. They appear closeknit, and it's no coincidence that the results are coming.

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Title Annotation:Sport
Publication:Birmingham Mail (England)
Date:Apr 6, 2015
Words:396
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