NIGEL Clough said the 2-0 success against Birmingham could prove crucial in the relegation battle.He said: "We were disappointed on Friday (losing to Ipswich) and it was important we bounced back. It wasn't just the victory but also the manner of the victory.
"To a man we defended brilliantly starting with the forwards, Lucas Akins and Luke Varney - that set us off. Then if they did get near our penalty area John Brayford, Kyle McFadzean and Ben Turner were uncompromising and threw themselves at every ball that came into the box.
"They missed a great chance when Jon McLaughlin came out and misjudged one and the lad just put it wide then we had a great chance through Lloyd Dyer. We said if we get a goal great but don't give anything away and see if the crowd becomes restless. To get our noses in front just increased that.
"I thought Luke Murphy also had a great game for us and he does it in such an understated way it doesn't always get noticed but he's getting fitter and stronger with every game.
"To get the second goal set them back and that was important. But then we didn't sit back and looked like getting another one with Jackson Irvine nearly scoring. Luke Varney hit the post and we remained a threat throughout the game."
Albion had to bring Stephen Bywater on when Jon McLaughlin was injured.
Clough said: "He has been ready all season and it takes until the 43rd game and he was there when we needed him. Jon's shoulder is twisted and very sore so we will have to see how it goes this week."
After the game Gianfranco Zola resigned as Birmingham manager.
Clough said: "It's not nice to hear the crowd shouting they don't want the manager here and we feel for him but we had a job to do irrespective of what was going on on or off the pitch."