Birmingham City manager Alex McLeish insists that it will be his wife Jill and not Burnley versus Sheffield United who will have his attention tonight.
Following Cardiff City’s crushing defeat to Preston North End, Sheffield United are now the only realistic contenders to Birmingham’s claims for the Championship’s final automatic promotion spot.
The Blades head to Turf Moor tonight and defeat for Kevin Blackwell’s men would mean that Birmingham could wrap up their return to the Premier League on home soil next Saturday, should they beat Preston at St Andrew’s.
Following his side’s victory at Watford, a result that moved Birmingham four points clear of Sheffield United, having been asked if he would be tuning into the match-up at Turf Moor, McLeish said: “I’d rather go out, I’m not really a ghoul. I think it’s something that is pretty horrible to be sitting there watching that and I’ll probably take my wife for a meal.”
Second-half substitute Cameron Jerome’s winner at Vicarage Road on Saturday saw Birmingham take another huge step towards the top flight. However the Blues’ promotion aspirations could swiftly be scuppered as easily as they could be achieved.
“It (the victory at Watford) gives us a platform again and keeps us in the driving seat, it puts the pressure on the other teams below us,” he said.
“We know that we face another tough challenge next week. Preston got a tremendous result (a 6-0 win at home to Cardiff) and they will be coming with great confidence.
“You have to earn the right, no matter who you play in this division and we will have to earn that again next week.”
Now, having praised the work of Wolves manager Mick McCarthy in taking his side into the Premier League, McLeish wants to see his side do the West Midlands proud by confirming their second spot finish.
“We would love to go up with Wolves as another West Midlands club. I need to congratulate Wolves and Mick McCarthy, he’s a good fella and I’m pleased. I hope Mick is saying the same about Birmingham in a week’s time.”
Although they didn’t appear to be too serious, McLeish did pick up a few minor injury concerns in Hertfordshire on Saturday. Franck Queudrue was substituted late on with a groin strain, Sebastian Larsson looked tired as did James McFadden, Keith Fahey suffered with cramp while David Murphy sustained a knock to his knee.