Birmingham City Facts.

The Kop stand at St. Andrews was bombed in 1941 by the Luftwaffe and as a result several games were played at Lockheed Leamington F.C .

In 1954, the Main Stand at St. Andrews was re-built in four months by the company Whittall's of Birmingham (who were first established in 1796)

Did you know that both Birmingham City and Manchester City wore "Umbro" kits for the 1956 F.A. Cup Final. Ironically the "Blues" were supplied with their kit by a former Aston Villa player Harry Parkes who set up a sports Outfitter business and had two shops in Birmingham.  

Birmingham player Alex Goven (1953-1958)  is credited for introducing Harry  Lauder's song which became the club anthem.

Click on the link below for Lauder's version.

The "Blues" Chairman Harry Morris had a long association with the club. Although he has been the leader of the board since 1938 he also played for them as an amateur.  His father, also called Harry, played for Small Heath making 42 appearance (2 goals) from 1883 to 1893. 

In 1956, their 81st season, Birmingham City were considered firm favorites by the pundits and the sports media to win the F.A. Cup Final

It was the greatest prize that English football could offer at that time.

The "Blues"  played every one of the six cup-ties away from St. Andrews in the competition however they won every game without a replay. They scored eighteen goals and conceded only two.  Watched by 100,000 at the old Wembley Stadium and five million live on television, the other finalists  Manchester City had other ideas and were a goal up after only three minutes. Birmingham had "wobbled" with the Wembley nerves under a hot sun. Yet Noel Kinsey soon scored for "Blues" on 15 minutes and the fans were in fine voice singing "Keep Right On!" In the second half Birmingham suffered with the heat not helped by wearing shirts that were long sleeved. Manchester choice was the more comfortable short sleeved "V" necked version. The superb skills of the Manchester team resulted in two more goals on 62 and 64 minutes. Manchester City with Don Revie inspirational won 3-1.

The defeat by rivals West Bromwich Albion in the 1931 F.A. Cup Final, their only previous appearance in the showpiece final  a quarter of a century earlier meant that Birmingham lost the chance to avenge that day and top what was their finest season since their formation in 1875.   

The 1956 Cup Final will always be remembered for Manchester's goalkeeper Bert  Trautmann who dislocated five vertebrae in his neck. The injury was so precarious that it could have been fatal after he saved a  goal colliding with Birmingham's Peter Murphy. Although the Blues lost at Wembley it did not "distract in no way whatsoever" according to the Birmingham Evening Despatch. Their   play was brilliant through that season.  They finished in their highest position, sixth, in the First Division of the Football League (now the Premiership) In the 42 League games they won 18, drew nine, and lost 15, scoring 75 goals and conceding 57. 

The First Division in the 1955-1956 season had a familiar look about it (like now in the Premiership) with Aston Villa, Arsenal, Bolton Wanderers, Chelsea, Everton, Manchester City, Manchester United, Newcastle, Sunderland and Tottenham Hotspur showing what a strong division it was, and, a remarkable season by the" Blues" that has never been equalled since by any of the modern Birmingham teams.

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