Why Garry Monk believes he can succeed where others have failed and save Birmingham ahead of clash with Middlesbrough

Garry Monk.
Garry Monk.

New Birmingham boss Garry Monk insists he can buck the trend of fallen managers at the Sky Bet Championship strugglers.

The former Leeds boss signed a three-and-a-half-year contract at St Andrew’s on Sunday to become Blues’ fifth manager in 15 months.

Steve Cotterill was sacked on Saturday with Birmingham third from bottom of the table having only been appointed in September.

Gary Rowett, Gianfranco Zola and Harry Redknapp have also been in charge since December 2016, but Monk has backed himself to succeed.

He said: “Of course you need to know what’s gone and I have an idea, but I judge it on my own merits. I don’t ring up former managers and players. I have done it from the very start, as a player, and judge it as I see fit.

“I wouldn’t come if I didn’t believe we couldn’t get these players and the club where we need to.

“It’s that process, I feel confident in my work, it’s been relatively successful and had ups and downs but that’s management.

“The club is in a difficult moment but these are the type of challenges I like to look at.

“I was a manager out of work and during those periods you’re always looking to what might come next.”

The ex-Swansea manager, who turns 39 today, faces another former club Middlesbrough, who sacked him in December, tonight.

He had been on Birmingham’s managerial shortlist for a number of years while the club also spoke to Gordon Strachan last week.

Monk also refused to deny there was a break clause in his contract should Birmingham be relegated, although it is understood there is an option.

“I’m only focused on doing a great job with Birmingham. It’s not even in the thought process,” he said when asked.