Nathan Redmond has admitted patience has become a virtue this season as he continues to make his way in the game.
The teenage Blues star admitted he has had to keep his frustrations in check on occasions. But he said he would learn from the ups and downs of the campaign and become a better player for it.
Redmond himself acknowledged in the summer that 2012-13 was going to be a very different, and much tougher, campaign after his big breakthrough. And so it has proven.
“I’m always a bit frustrated,” he said. “I’m living in my own city, playing for my hometown club. All I want to do is play football for Birmingham City. It’s going to be frustrating sitting on the sidelines, not knowing whether I’m to get on as a substitute or get in the team.”
Redmond turned 19 a week ago and has notched up 73 appearances for Blues since making his debut in August, 2010 aged 16 and 173 days – the second-youngest player ever to appear for the club, after Trevor Francis.
But the youngster has never had more than five consecutive starts in his career and was axed when Clark decided to bring in Robert Hall from West Ham on loan in November.
“It was just about working hard to play again, getting my head down,” said Redmond. “I knew I always had to fight to get back in the team and the gaffer made that clear.”
Redmond’s performance as a second-half substitute against Derby County was illuminating. He drilled in his first goal of the season, an opportunist strike from just outside the penalty area.
Redmond said: “It was one of the first games where I felt I was back to last year. I’m not trying to dwell on last year, but my performances then were quite good. I think I’ve just been coming back to form.”