James McFadden has insisted that he was happy with everything that he and his Birmingham City teammates received for Christmas.

While there was probably the inevitable unwanted knitted jumper and cheap cologne in their stockings, the points return on the field was what mattered for Blues.

Two games in three days is a tough task for most but when you enter the demanding period off the back of two morale-damaging defeats then the possibility of disaster is even more likely.

Another double dosage of losses would have left Birmingham three points behind Reading, even further adrift of leaders Wolverhampton Wanderers and dangerously close to the chasing pack behind them.

However, four points from two games against Ipswich and Swansea, leaves Alex McLeish’s side one place off Reading by goal difference only and their talented forward McFadden relatively satisfied with the festive return.

“I think it was a point gained against Swansea because they played really well and had us chasing them for the whole game so to come away with a point was pleasing,” said St Andrew’s very own Scottish braveheart.

“Obviously you want to be winning every game you play at home but if you look at the bigger picture it’s a decent point for us.

“I think if you looked at it the other way and we’d drawn away and won at home then you’d take it. Obviously we were looking for the six points but we’ll just have to take the four and carry on.”

While the win at Portman Road was a professionally-churned out victory, Birmingham had to dig deep to gain a point from a stamina-sapping encounter with Swansea at St Andrew’s on Sunday.

The Swans are capable of giving any side the runaround at the best of times but when you have only returned from a trip to Suffolk 48 hours earlier you are in for a hard time as McFadden admitted.

“The two games in three days obviously affected us more than them, Swansea played really well and then we’ve had to grind out the point,” he added.

“I think I just produced a hard-working performance, it’s a big ask to play the games so close but I just worked hard and tried to give everything I had.”

Next up for Birmingham is another battle with local rivals and Championship title-chasing rivals Wolves but on the FA Cup stage, where both managers are likely to rotate their personnel to keep them fresh for the all-important league campaign.

However McFadden admits that he doesn’t see Saturday’s cup clash at St Andrew’s as a well-earned rest from the trials and tribulations of the Championship.

“I don’t think we’re looking for a break, it’s just part of the season and it’s a big game against Wolves and one that we’re looking forward to.

“We will take the rest now and make sure we are fresh for that game.”

Meanwhile David Murphy, who was sent off for a second bookable offence against Swansea, will be forced to sit out the FA Cup third round tie with Wolverhampton Wanderers while he serves an automatic one-game suspension.