Full-time - 90'
1 - 1
20:00 +00:00, December 28, 2010
St Andrews Stadium, England
Referee: Lee Mason
FULL TIME United press in the dying seconds and have a few half chances to strike on goal before Giggs wastes a good crossing opportunity to signal the end of the game. Two points dropped for United but they do go back on top of the table.
Birmingham win a corner but United clear and head upfield where Rooney's cross is deflected ito Foster's arms. Giggs was booked for complaining about the goal too, so I hear.
Four minutes added. Van der Sar charged over to the linesman because the replay shows that Zigic met the ball with his arm to knock it towards Bowyer. A hard one for the officials to spot.
GOAL Bowyer has snatched a point! Great delivery from Johnson, Zigic gets up and diverts the ball to the back post where Bowyer finishes from two yards.
A lovely ball from Hleb inside Giggs releases Carr but his cross is too long. Shame, as there were plenty blue shirts in the box.
Gibson is realeased by Giggs and for a while it is two-on-one but his eventual ball for Berbatov is cut out by the last man Dann.
Last throw of the dice for Birmingham as Kevin Phillips comes on for Jerome.
Vidic again meets Giggs' corner but can't direct his header on target.
Vidic meets Giggs' corner and Foster makes a smart save above his head.
Beausejour makes way for the giant beanpole Zigic.
A neat little dink into the area sees Hleb go down under the tiniest of contact from Rafael. Ferdinand has a right pop at Hleb.
Birmingham finally starting to get numbers forward. Looks like Zigic is coming on too.
Giggs fires into a tackle on Bowyer, and gets a slice on the ball, but his opponent stays down and the crowd howl for a foul. Nothing doing from the referee.
Cool work from Berbatov back in his own half as he shields the ball from Hleb and then switches it to Vidic to clear.
Rooney heads for the area, squares it to Gibson on the edge of the box but he gets his shot all wrong and it barely goes out for a goal kick.
Scott Dann is booked for holding Berbatov back as a ball sailed over the pair of them.
Beausejour fails with two passes into the area. He's had a very quiet night.
Anderson goes off and Darren Fletcher is on.
Evra hobbles off but I dare say he'll be back on shortly.
Hleb finds Carr in a bit of space in the box, but as he miscontrols he boots Evra's foot. United's break came to nothing as Berbatov's ball for Rooney was cut out.
Larsson's poor cross is his last involvement, and Hleb replaces him. Larsson expresses his displeasure and then gets an earful from his manager.
A sloppy ball from Ferdinand gifts Larsson possession but his cross is too heavy for Jerome.
A lovely passing move from the visitors ends at the feet of Anderson who gets a sight of goal from 22 yards out but slices his shot past the post.
Birmingham look a little lost now they are behind. Surely McLeish needs to make changes.
Poor ball from Berbatov after he was released down the right channel by Rooney. He tried to look for the return ball but it was far too casual.
Good ball in for Rafael and a decent clearance from Johnson as Berbatov lurked.
More space for United as Giggs feeds Rooney, he dawdles then hits an awful return pass to his colleague which means he has to take a touch before shooting. Johnson blocks.
So nearly two for Berbatov! He gets Anderson's ball, dances round a blue shirt and then strikes a shot against the post from the 18-yard line.
Given how toothless Birmingham have been this season - 17 goals in 17 games - that could well be that for United.
GOAL Berbatov strikes! A touch of class in a game that has been lacking any. Gibson slips a little ball inside before Berbs collects and fires low into the net.
Anderson gets a chunk of space in midfield but he can't find Rooney, who was running off Carr's shoulder.
Rooney meets Giggs' ball but he was leaning back and can't keep his header down.
Evra does well to win a corner down the left with Carr and Bowyer in attendance.
At the other end Rafael stands up a decent looking ball but Rooney's header trickles wide.
Pinball in the area as Jerome has a couple of volleys at goal before Gardner sticks out a leg but directs the ball into Van der Sar's arms.
Bowyer's shot from 25 yards flicks off Ferdinand and Birmingham have their first corner of the second half.
Rooney is still struggling in his wide left berth. How long before he gets pushed up top with Berbatov?
Rafael is blocked off by Beausejour and goes down holding his face but he's up quick smart when he doesn't get a free kick.
Neat interchange between Jerome and Carr before Larsson attempts to head on goal but he can only flick it on and Rafael tidies up.
Anderson jinks towards the penalty area but then comes up against a wall of blue shirts and has to go backwards.
The teams file out for the second half.
Barry Ferguson and Anderson exchange pleasantries.
If you need a reminder about the rest of today's Premier League action, including wins for Fulham, Blackburn, Tottenham, Blackpool and Man City, have a read of our wrap here.
HALF TIME A pretty poor half really. United on top in the opening stages as a Giggs cross hit the post but Birmingham better towards the break as Gardner went close a few times.
Larsson hunts down a long punt up field and back heels into the area but Evra gets there before Jerome.
Berbatov takes the ball off Rooney and heads towards the box but then his flick is a yard in front of his striking partner.
Its all a bit tight for United as they try and knock it around. Jerome ends up blocking Vidic's clearance but he can't chase down the ball as it crosses the byline.
Nice move from Birmingham as Larsson crosses, Bowyer lays off to Gardner and he blazes over from the edge of the box.
Space for Rafael to burst into but he tries to slip a difficult pass into Berbatov and ends up just rolling the ball out of play.
Gardner cuts inside and has a go with his left foot but it was never troubling Van der Sar.
The game has gone very scrappy in the last five minutes. Lots of fouls, lots of complaining to the referee and very little quality on show.
In the last ten minutes Birmingham have enjoyed 69 per cent possession. Tables turning.
Now Roger Johnson is penalised for bumping Rafael in the back as he cleared Larsson's cross.
Giggs slides in on Gardner and cleans him out but doesn't get a touch on the ball. In the spirit of comromise ref Lee Mason gives Birmingham a corner.
Gardner's effort flicks off the wall and hands Birmingham a corner.
Vidic is carded for a wild, high kick on Jerome as he burst away on goal. Ferdinand was in attendance though so that pervented it being red.
Giggs cuts inside two players and has a pop but Foster is right behind it.
Bowyer is carded for a late lunge on Gibson. That was nasty and deserved a card.
Manchester United enjoying 62 per cent of possession so far.
Ridgewell gets down the left but his cross hits Carrick and Van der Sar claims ahead of Jerome.
Handbags between Anderson and Ferguson as they wrestled for the ball. A little shove each and a ridiculous booking for both. Actually, Ferguson escaped, it was Gardner who got the card after stepping in to back up his mate.
Awful delivery again from Larsson, who can't even clear the first man.
Another free kick for Birmingham but that was a pitiful dive from Beausejour. Rafael had a tiny hold of him but he dived like a swan.
A poor effort from Larsson, who didn't give the ball a chance to come down.
Carrick bundles into Jerome unnecessarily on the edge of the box and Birmingham have a good chance to hit the target from 20 yards.
Looks like Foster got a little touch on the ball and that may well have saved a goal. Quality.
So nearly an inadvertent goal for Giggs! His cross loops over Foster as the keeper backpeddled, and smashed against the post.
A terrible effort from Rooney as he attempts another curler. High, wide and not too handsome.
Another poor cross from the left, this time from Evra. It's all happening down that flank.
Again Rooney gets the ball with just Carr in front of him. This time he shifts it and crosses but it is over Giggs' head as he darted towards the near post.
Neat move from United as Berbatov controls a looping ball well and Rooney is one-one-one with Carr but his eventual effort is right at former colleague Ben Foster.
The free kick is nodded out of the danger area by Berbatov.
Rafael is not happy as Beausejour wins a free kick off him. Looked like a foul to me.
Rooney tracks back well as Birmingham again look to attack down the right.
Rooney's first sight of goal but his shot from 25 yards is weak and wide.
Most of Birmingham's approach play coming down the right as Larsson looks to get round Evra. Again the left back holds firm.
Birmingham sitting deep and letting Jerome forrage up top on his own. No real openings for United as yet.
Larsson tries another cross but Evra blocks it, then as the left back brings the ball away he is tripped.
Berbatov's flick can't find Rooney before Birmingham break and Larsson's cross sees an off-balance Jerome nod over the bar.
Amazingly, gven the cancellations against Blackpool and Chelsea, this is Manchester United's first away game for six weeks. How will they react? We're about to find out...
Manchester United brushed Sunderland aside on Boxing Day, thanks to Dimitar Berbatov's brace. He and Rooney are paired up front again tonight. In 12 Premier League games between the sides, United haven't lost a single one.
Birmingham haven't played for 16 days after their games with Newcastle and Everton were called off so will they be rusty or rested and refreshed?
Man Utd: Van der Sar, Rafael Da Silva, Ferdinand, Vidic, Evra, Gibson, Carrick, Anderson, Giggs, Berbatov, Rooney. Subs: Kuszczak, Neville, Hernandez, Evans, Fletcher, Obertan, Macheda.
Birmingham: Foster, Carr, Johnson, Dann, Ridgewell, Larsson, Ferguson, Gardner, Bowyer, Beausejour, Jerome. Subs: Taylor, Phillips, Derbyshire, Fahey, Zigic, Hleb, Jiranek.
Good evening everyone and welcome to live coverage of Birmingham's clash with Manchester United. The visitors need a point to reclaim top spot from their noisy neighbours, City, and you can follow every kick with me Chris Murphy.