Football - Blues duo stake claims

Wes Thomas and Nathan Redmond are pushing for starting berths as Birmingham make the trip to Middlesbrough.

PA Sport

The pair stepped off the bench with Blues 1-0 down at half-time at home to Derby last weekend and completely changed the course of the game.

On-loan Thomas netted a brace, his first goals since joining from Bournemouth in January, either side of a first goal of the season for winger Redmond as Lee Clark's side triumphed 3-1.

Skipper Steven Caldwell shrugged off his recent illness to return to the bench and the Scot will now be pushing for a starting place himself at the Riverside.

Pablo Ibanez (groin) should return next week while fellow defender Mitch Hancox remains sidelined with a hamstring complaint alongside long-term absentees Marlon King, Stephen Carr, David Murphy and Will Packwood.

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