Birmingham City news: Aitor Karanka reveals timeline for forward's return

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Despite securing a point on their travels in midweek against Huddersfield Town, Birmingham City edged closer to the relegation zone on Wednesday as Rotherham United picked up an unlikely victory.

After being reduced to ten men in the second-half of their clash with Sheffield Wednesday, the Millers were seemingly drifting towards a score draw before forward Freddie Ladapo fired home a dramatic winner which sent shock-waves through the Championship.

Currently 21st in the second-tier standings, the Blues will be aiming to extend their unbeaten league run to three games when they head to Oakwell to face Barnsley.

Given that his side are now only three points clear of rivals Rotherham, Birmingham manager Aitor Karanka knows that the club will need to step up their performance levels if they are to avoid the drop in May.

Whereas the likes of Sam Hogan and Gary Gardner could be in line to start against Barnsley after being rotated on Tuesday, January signing Sam Cosgrove is set to miss out once again as he continues to recover from an ankle injury.

However, Karanka has suggested that the forward could be in line to make a return to Birmingham's match-day squad for the club's showdown with Bristol City later this month.

Speaking to the Birmingham Mail about Cosgrove, the Blues boss said: "I think he is going to be with us soon, as soon as he is he will join the team, I hope next week he can train with us.

"When you end up in that run everything goes against you, he was training well and it is difficult for him to arrive from Scotland, new team, new team-mates, in our situation - then he got injured.

"His character is good, he has always been positive and with his attitude I hope that he is going to be with us soon."

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When you consider that Birmingham have only managed to find the back of the net on 26 occasions this season in the second-tier, Cosgrove's imminent return could provide a solution to this issue.

Whilst the forward has only featured twice for the Blues since moving to the club from Aberdeen earlier this year, he may end up thriving in the Championship if he can replicate the performances that he was able to produce last season.

As well as scoring 23 goals in all competitions for the Dons, Cosgrove provided two assists for his team-mates as he helped the club secure a fourth-place finish in the Scottish Premiership.

If the 24-year-old is able to hit the ground running at St Andrew's after making a full recovery from his injury, he may end up playing a pivotal role in Birmingham's fight for survival in the closing stages of the 2020/21 campaign.

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