McLeish confident Birmingham can beat the drop

The Blues managed a goalless draw with Manchester City at Eastlands on Saturday, but have not won away in the Premier League since March.

“It’s a long, long season,” said McLeish “We’ve already been written off, but it’s a season in which there are plenty of points to be played for.

“Manchester City were much better in the second-half and we had to dig deep, but I don’t think people should start getting paranoid about anything right now.

“Carlos Tevez is a bit of a talisman for City but our players played very well against him and they deserve a big pat on the back for playing against a top player in world football and acquitting themselves the way they did.

“It should be further proof or evidence to our defenders that they can cope in this tough league, which has been so competitive this season. It’s been a little bit unusual, but everybody is still in there with a shout.

“Teams near the bottom of the league are still in with a shout of climbing the table. A win or two can see you climb to eighth or ninth, and that’s just the way it is. And it looks as if it’s going to go that way right to the wire.”