BIRMINGHAM boss Lee Clark had every sympathy for Burnley midfielder Dean Marney, whose dismissal was the turning point on Saturday.
The Clarets had levelled Curtis Davies’ headed opener with a Ross Wallace penalty and were in the ascendency when Marney was sent off for a thunderous challenge on Paul Robinson.
Blues went on to win 2-1 with an injury time volley from Marlon King, and Clark - himself a tough-tackling midfielder with Newcastle and Sunderland - said: “It’s a tough one.
“He’s made a genuine attempt for the ball. I never thought it was anything over the top, from either player.
“It was just two committed players going for the ball. One gets there a fraction of a second before the other one, and the other one gets caught. But it’s football, isn’t it?
“It certainly changed the game, in terms of us getting the positive result.
“But don’t take anything away from us as well, even when it was 11 versus 11 out tactics were good, our game plan was good
“We had a 10 minute spell in the second-half where we had to weather the storm.
“But when we passed the ball, when we got it to the wide man, they looked a threat.”
And of King’s stunning winner, Clark purred: “Brilliant goal.
“I was right behind Marlon when he hit it, and he hit it as sweet as a nut. It flew in, it was worthy to win any game.”