Monk hails ‘clinical’ hat-trick hero Jutkiewicz

Birmingham boss Garry Monk hailed Lukas Jutkiewicz after his hat-trick paved the way to Birmingham’s first home win of the season.

It was the first hat-trick of his senior career as the Blues claimed a 3-1 Sky bet Championship won over Rotherham.

The former Burnley striker is currently in top form having scored five goals in his last two home games.

Monk said: “We are delighted for him. He was clinical and things went our way.

Lukas has an incredible work rate and we try to play to his strengths.

“He does this every match.  He gets into the right positions and he deserves his goals.

It’s his work he does for the team which impresses me rather than his goals.

“The performance will give all the players confidence. The hard work they are putting in will allow them to create the goal opportunities.”

Commenting upon Birmingham’s struggle to win at home this season Monk added: “We have never doubted ourselves. This can be seen from all our performances.

“The game against Rotherham was lower in terms of performance but it was solid. It was what was needed and it was good we were clinical with our finishing.”

Rotherham, still without a single away point this season, were effectively destroyed by two first half  goals in the space of three minutes.

Jutkiewicz took full advantage of the Millers’ shortcomings in defence when he capitalised upon two bad mistakes by goalkeeper Marek Rodak.

The striker’s best goal was his third in the 68th which resulted from a well worked free-kick organised in training. Instead of firing at goal, Jota slipped a short pass to Jacques Maghoma who slide the ball square into the path of Jutkiewicz, who scored with a low raking drive past Rodak.

The Millers produced a strong finish  and were rewarded with a 77th minute goal from Jon Taylor – Rotherham’s first goal in five away games.

Rotherham manager Paul Warne had mixed feelings about the inability to produce three away points.

He said: “Their third goal killed us off.  We kept going and the way we play, we are a difficult team to play against, but we were not our best on this occasion.

“I just think in the first half hour we moved the ball too slowly and tried to be too precise.

“There were a lot of opportunities in the box but we didn’t capitalise on these chances.

“It isn’t lack of ability because the lads can score. A few of the lads had an off day.

“Obviously it is massively important to pick up some away points. The lads have been excellent at home and if we had been excellent against Birmingham we would have collected some points for the bus trip home.

“Our away record it is not a mental hurdle for me.  I felt quite comfortable after 15 minutes. Even after the first goal I believed that we could get back into the game.

“Collectively I think the game was one too much for us and there were not enough of my players at their best.”

Football Paradise Staff Reporter

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