Birmingham City’s battling draw at Manchester City and the landmark win over Chelsea have shattered the myth that they only get going when behind.

In the two previous matches, Stoke City and West Ham United both made the running and Blues roused from 2-0 down, as they did on the opening day at Sunderland.

But it wasn’t so much that they were sleepy heads. For Andy Watson, boss Alex McLeish’s long time right-hand man, it was evidence of a toughening of their mentality.

When McLeish took over three years ago on Sunday, Blues were a little bit of a soft touch.

“It’s a real measure of the will and the desire of the players,” said joint first team coach Watson. “Nothing is given up.

“We might not play well at certain times. But people know they have got to work against us to get something and to hold on to something.

“When we first arrived, if we lost the first goal it was a case of ‘where are we going to get one from?’. We are turning that mentality round.”

Blues are away at Fulham on Saturday, a side who have become the latest to find themselves in trouble near the relegation zone.

The Premier League has been like that so far this unpredictable season. You’re never safe, but you’re never far away from mid-table either.

A year ago, 25 points separated the leaders and the club in 17th, where Fulham are. Now it’s 14 points.

“Everybody is beating everybody,” said Watson. “People speak about the difficulty in the Championship and getting promotion and how can you pick a result in that division.

“It’s now starting to get a little like that in the Premier League, particularly if the big four or top six – whatever you want to call them – are playing away from home. And even at home we are starting to see results occurring against them.”

Blues got their second win in 12 games by keeping Chelsea at bay.

It was reminiscent of last season when they got the goal – Lee Bowyer doing the trick, as he often did on 2009-10 – and protected and survived.

They have drawn seven games, and not won away. Breaking those deadlocks is something required by Blues to make upward progress.

“The draws will keep you in that area where we are,” said Watson. You start with a point, as Alex says, and you can only lose a point. You can win three.

“When chances are coming, it’s being able to take them at key times. If we weren’t creating chances in a game it would be a bigger worry.”