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Match officials leave Birmingham fuming

Birmingham went down to a narrow 2-1 away defeat to Blackburn and will feel they did enough to at least share the points after a spirited second half performance.

Early into the second half Birmingham where two goals down from a David Bentley effort in the 14th minute then a Benni McCarthy penalty on 54 minutes after Roque Santa Cruz had been clearly brought down.

Moments before this crucial second strike the visitors had a Gary McSheffrey goal ruled out for a narrow offside decision.

But the Blues gave themselves hope when Cameron Jerome powered home with 22 minutes remaining.

Rovers had chances to make the game safe but Birmingham pushed forward for the equaliser and it needed a fine save in injury time from Brad Friedel to push over an Olivier Kapo header to prevent the draw.

Birmingham have not won at Ewood Park in the top flight for 72 years and boss Steve Bruce was disappointed they did not at least take a point from an entertaining encounter.

Bruce was particularly angry with the offside decision and why technology was not being used for borderline decisions as in rugby and cricket.

"I know that (Sebastien) Larsson had got to the byline and when he pulled the ball back there had to be a defender there when the goal was scored.

"To be fair they put the linesman under tremendous pressure here by shouting and swearing at them," although Bruce refused to elaborate whether he meant the Rovers bench or the fans although he had no dispute with the penalty decision.

"He got it desperately wrong and we lost a Premiership game with the big decision of the match.

"We've got all the technology with more cameras here than ITN and in the World Cup and in Rugby the referee goes straight to the third official and a decision is made in ten seconds and accepted, so why not in the Premiership? It's about time we did something about it.

"It galls you when you have played so well that a decision like that can cost you a match, and I know they have a difficult job but he got a big call wrong and they are heavily paid. The benefit should go to the forward not to the defender."

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Tribal Football Staff

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