Cauley Woodrow went from villain to hero and bagged an early birthday present as he paved the way for Barnsley’s 2-1 Sky Bet Championship win at Birmingham.
The striker – who turns 26 on Wednesday – equalised with a penalty in the 71st minute to make up for two first-half misses, before Callum Styles grabbed the winning goal in the 84th minute.
Before that, it looked like Scott Hogan’s 56th-minute strike might give the Blues their first win in six games, ending a run of 326 minutes without a goal in open play.
Barnsley made the brighter start and created three early chances.
Mads Andersen’s ball over the top put Woodrow in on goal, only for the striker to fire wildly over.
Then a quick free kick by Alex Mowatt and a mistake by Maxime Colin saw Victor Adeboyejo wriggle through – but Conor Chaplin fired woefully wide with a good sight of goal.
Chaplin then fed Woodrow in the inside right position, but the former Fulham youngster lashed high and wide again.
Barnsley continued to look the more dangerous side and Callum Styles was next his try his luck, arrowing a rising drive narrowly over the bar from 20 yards.
Birmingham’s first attempt on goal came in the 27th minute when Ivan Sanchez curled a 25-yard a couple of feet over the bar after Michal Helik tripped Jonathan Leko.
Another error by Colin saw Barnsley return to the attack and Woodrow had the chance to capitalise from the edge of the area – but again blazed over.
The Blues upped the tempo after the break and Sanchez saw a shot deflected just over after cutting in from the right.
And the hosts took the lead in the 56th minute with a lovely move.
A backheel from Leko caught Barnsley’s defence napping on their left and Colin crossed to Hogan, who made no mistake with a cool, low first-time finish into the bottom corner from 10 yards
The visitors continued to be wasteful as Callum Brittain fired woefully over when unmarked 12 yards out.
But it was Brittain who was instrumental in winning the penalty that drew the Tykes level in the 71st minute.
Kristian Pedersen appeared to just leave his foot in too long and made contact with the winger – and referee Tony Harrington pointed to the spot.
Woodrow made no mistake as he calmly sidefooted to goalkeeper Neil Etheridge’s left to equalise.
Thirteen minutes later the turnaround was complete when Styles drilled home first time from just inside the box, after the hosts had failed to deal with substitute Dominik Frieser’s long throw-in.
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