The Chalkboard: Monk must take advantage of perfect chance to start Isaac Vassell

Birmingham City will look to bounce back from second city derby day disappointment when they host Milwall at St Andrew’s on Wednesday night, and manager Garry Monk should take the opportunity to bring Isaac Vassell back into the starting XI.

On the chalkboard

The 25-year-old returned to action following a knee injury in January, but owing to the form of Lukas Jutkiewicz and Che Adams up top he has had to settle for a regular spot on the substitutes’ bench.

Following eight consecutive outings from there, he has been unused in the Blues’ previous two Championship fixtures – including the 1-0 defeat against Aston Villa on Sunday.

Two losses with no goals has handed Monk the ideal chance to make a change, and he needs to take it to try and get the Midlands club back on track in their bid for a top-six finish.

Who gets dropped?

It’s easy – Jutkiewicz.

Adams may have gone three league games without finding the net, but the SkyBet Championship Player of the Month for February is still the first name on the Birmingham team-sheet.

Therefore it must be his strike partner that drops out in favour of Vassell, and in truth it is probably a decision that is overdue.

Yes, he has had a good link-up with Adams, but no goals since the end of November given how many minutes he has played isn’t really acceptable for a centre-forward – even if he is playing the role of a foil.

As the fixtures pile up and fatigue increases, a home game against a struggling club just one point above the relegation zone gives Vassell the perfect chance to make a successful first start of the campaign.