Belfast Telegraph

Monday 29 December 2014

McLeish upbeat over Foster

Ben Foster
Ben Foster

Birmingham manager Alex McLeish is confident goalkeeper Ben Foster will be fit to face relegation-threatened Wolves this weekend.

The England international was forced off in the first half of Saturday's 5-0 defeat at Liverpool with a stiff back and a dead leg after being injured trying to prevent the second goal. However, neither problem has proved to be too serious and the 28-year-old is likely to keep his place in the starting line-up on Sunday.

"Ben has made great progress," McLeish told bcfc.com. "We were worried about him after he hobbled off the bus on Saturday night but the last couple of days he's had a lot of treatment and relief and we expect him to make it on Sunday."

Birmingham are hoping Manchester City can hasten their Europa League progress next season.

Should Roberto Mancini's side win the FA Cup and also qualify for the Champions League then Blues, as Carling Cup winners, would automatically qualify for the play-off stage - the round immediately prior to the group phase.

That would mean their European adventure would start in mid-August and Stoke, as FA Cup runners-up, would enter at the third qualifying round in late July.

However, should City fail in one of their two aims then, UEFA have confirmed to the club, Birmingham will be entered into the third qualifying round.

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