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Lee Bowyer explains Lukas Jutkiewicz chat as Blues beat Blackpool

Lee Bowyer praised Lukas Jutkiewicz after the striker came off the bench to score just his second goal of the season and hand Birmingham City a 1-0 victory over Blackpool.

The 32-year-old, who has started for the last seven matches having lost his place to Troy Deeney.

However, he replaced his fellow striker with a quarter of an hour to go and had only been on the pitch seven minutes when he bundled home Jordan James’ header.

And Bowyer revealed he had given the veteran a pep talk earlier in the week.

“Jutkiewicz scores goals as well,” the head coach said. “I have spoken to him earlier on in the week, it’s been tough for him, Troy in the last few weeks has been assisting, giving Scotty a lot of chances in games.

“Jutkiewicz ain’t really done much wrong. I said to him ‘Nothing’s changed the way I feel about you, I still feel the same way but Troy is a good player, you have got to be patient, I know it’s tough but when you get your chance. Just grab it’.

“When I put him on I said ‘Go win us the game’ and that’s what he’s done. I am really pleased for Jukey because without doing anything wrong he has watched a lot of football of late.

“But I know he is a good pro, I know when I put him on I know he if he gets a chance there’s a good chance he’s going to take it.”

Overall he was happy with the outcome, if not his team’s first half performance.

“I would say a hard point three points, it was a game of two halves, they were better than us in the first half. We did well to get to half time at 0-0 then second half I thought we were better than them.

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“Conditions played a big part in the game. It wasn’t pretty but the most important thing for me is that we won the game and we got three points and we ground it out. Especially with everything that has been happened to us of late, I am really pleased.

“Second half I changed it, I went to a back four, positive move, I just didn’t want it to unfold into a 0-0. I knew it could go either way, it’s bit risky but it’s risk and reward. That’s the way I am, I want to win football matches not just watch draws.

“So I changed it to a four-diamond, wanted to get the overload in the middle of the park and have more bodies when we put the ball into the box. That paid off.

“Ten clean sheets out of 20 games, that’s some going. The players deserve plenty of credit for that because it’s hard work. No-one gives you ten clean sheets, you have to work for that.

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“Again today we had to work for that. Mati made a good save in the second half.

“It’s just hard work on the training pitch, demanding of them if your mate is out of position can you help him out? It’s hard

“Yes, so they should. We are second in the league table for clean sheets. We are the best outside the top three for clean sheets.

“If you went on all those stats, expected goals and all that, we should be fifth or sixth in the league. We are doing the right stuff on the training pitch.

“And that’s adapting as well. If you think Harlee played on Tuesday, Kristian came in today, George Friend has played a part. Jordan has been wing back, we have had Max wing back, Bela.

“People have played out of position as well. Players have had to keep adapting to different formations as well.”

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