Often Partisan

Fourth Gray Bid Rejected

Bournemouth had a fourth bid for teenage winger Demarai Gray knocked back yesterday as Blues insist that they are not selling. The bid, believed to be in the region of £3.5million with add-ons to take it up to £4million follows on the heels of one for £3.2million last week by the Cherries who seem desperate to add Gray to their team.

With the transfer window closing on Monday I can already see the sceptics queuing up to give their twopennorth of how Blues will sell Gray at the last possible second, maximising the fee and not allowing Rowett any time to spend any of it. With various people “in the know” already stating throughout January that Gray’s departure was “a done deal” it almost seems surprising to me that Blues are still in the position to fight bids off at a value I think in other circumstances I’d be happy to sell at.

Before anyone asks it, I’m not going to nail my colours to any mast whether I think Gray will go or stay. I don’t believe anything is as cut and dried as that; I think Blues have a ballpark figure that they’ll be willing to negotiate from and I don’t think anyone has got that close to it yet – however, that doesn’t mean that there won’t be a bid in the final few days of the transfer window that will meet that figure. Of course I agree with the sentiment that should Gray go, Rowett should be given a good proportion of it to bring in some quality and I’m aware that time is running out; however I don’t think it’s beyond the realms of possibility that Rowett hasn’t already got some ideas worked out and should it look like happening could move quickly to bring in players.

One thing I think this all proves is that there is no such thing as “nothing left to sell” – something people were lamenting at the start of the season. I think there was a belief that things regarding the ownership would be forced to a head because of the lack of saleable assets – and yet we are now in a position where we could end up selling a player for a figure which (and I’m doing this off the top of my head so I could be wrong) hasn’t been matched since the first season we went down. Even if Gray does go I don’t believe we’ll in the position of having no one left to sell – I’m almost certain that someone else will rise to the fore. Maybe it won’t be as dramatic as Gray or such a steep increase in value – but I do think that with a team of players at the right age, bought for not much money and being paid not much money there is scope for at least one to become a new valued prospect; as an example the way Cotterill has played I wouldn’t be surprised if someone thought about him at the end of the season as a player to help take a team up; likewise Andy Shinnie.

This is why I was pleased we held on to Richard Beale during the last change of management; it’s my belief that the Academy and u21 setups have enabled the club to remain somewhat self-sufficient and I think that when the change of ownership does come there will be scope to build a really good club with the foundations that are in place. As much as Carson is maligned I think people have to remember that he invested in the academy when the previous incumbents thought it a waste of time; Carson was prepared to buy Wast Hills from the Uni of Birmingham before he was arrested and okayed the massive influx of cash that went into improving the training ground and academy facilities that has brought about this massive improvement in young players coming through.

With a bit of luck we’ll hold on to Gray at the close of the window – or if we do sell him, sell him to a club that will be prepared for us to loan him back for the remainder of the season. I think it’s important whatever happens that Gray gets to continue his footballing education – and at the moment I think he could well be best off doing that playing week in, week out for Blues. No doubt there will be all kinds of rumour until the transfer deadline passes at 11pm on Monday night – however, rumours are just that and I don’t think people should get upset until anything is made official.

If you’re based in the Redditch or Solihull areas, you might notice I have a new column in the local newspapers there where I’ll be talking about Blues-related stuff; if you’re not and want to catch up on my thoughts please add your name to the mailing list – I send out newsletters on a weekly ish basis rounding up whats happened and adding thoughts I might not necessarily share online.

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60 Responses to “Fourth Gray Bid Rejected”

  • Richard Granfield says:

    Swop Gray for Jordan Ibe and £1m!

  • Will says:

    By the way the Blues Youth FA Cup match away to Liverpool is live on Liverpool TV channel if you have skytv
    that is

  • Will says:


    v Liverpool-FAYC

    KO 19.00

    Deva Stadium, Chester CH1 4LT

  • Mike ware says:

    Think you will find Liverpool TV not free anymore

  • Blue Lizard says:

    Gray would just be on the Bench at Liverpool getting splinters up his arse and Blues should tell little Bournemouth Pay the price we want or pi$$ off you are unsettling our player!!

  • John says:

    I had the feeling that Lloyd Dyer was brought in with the idea that Gray would move on.

  • andy says:

    No I think Dyer was bought in because we needed that type of natural winger, Blues were a little short there to say the least. As for this Gray saga, every player has a price of course. The Redmond and Butland deals were eye popping ones because they were sold too cheaply, practically given away, maybe the club was on the verge of going under water so those deals had to be done, but if Blues are not currently on the verge of going under then Gray needs to stay, unless of course, a silly offer comes in or the kid himself asks to leave. It is one thing selling players such as Cotterill or Shinnie, if clubs made acceptable bids but completely another selling off the clubs future, which is a trend that has to stop.

    • oldburyblue says:

      I would be more disappointed if Cotterill or Shinnie were sold. They are of the right age to give us many years of good service. Gray COULD become a very good player but there is no guarantee that he will ever “kick on”. So many brilliant 18yr olds have failed to in the past.

  • Alex T says:

    I always thought, as soon as Berrahino was sold, Gray (although not a direct replacement) would be on his way to the Baggies.
    It would make sense for him…. doesn’t have to move location to move to an established premier club and wouldn’t be likely to rot on the bench.
    If we got £6-7m for him, I wouldn’t mind too much, as long as Rowett was able to spend half of that on strengthening the squad

    • StaffsBlue says:

      According to the BM this morning, Albion may be considering a bid. How true it is I don’t know. Apparently, he impressed them last week… which, considering how poorly their players played, wouldn’t take much.

    • The Flying Pig says:

      Oh no! The thought of Jeremy Peace being involved in a negotiation for one of our players fills me with dread. I still haven’t forgiven the ‘tight-wad’ for ripping us off in the Ben Foster sale.

  • AussieBlue says:

    That’s a helluva an offer. Add a promotion clause in there (+1 mill in the event of?) and I think we’ll lose him…regrettably. I hope Dimi stays but money talks.
    I agree we have one of the best academies in football, and Carson was party to that.

  • nicko says:

    look what has happened to Redmond half of this season he has been on the bench mutch is now on his third club if he goes to palace butland has been shipped out on loan ever since he left blues does anybody remember foday the young lad that went to fulham the new viera cant get in the first team squad and i am sure the same will happen to young grey. kro

  • StaffsBlue says:

    In the BM now, Rowett has enquired about Dorrens. So Dorrens coming in, with Gray going the other way? It’s a possibility I suppose.

  • Dino Tiltoni says:

    I dont think rushed January transfer window deals have helped us or the players involved. We lost Upson to West Ham. If he’d waited until the end of that season we wouldn’t have gone down and he would have gone to a top club. Instead his career stalled.

    I can’t believe that Dyer hasn’t been brought in to fill Gray’s boots.

  • chattsBlue says:

    Personally never liked swapped deals when you’re the team getting the “cast off”. Never really think the new player is that interested!
    But in GR I trust!

  • rhees says:

    Impressed the havnt just grabbed the money on offer really pannu would have.
    If they get 5. 6. Million they will take it and you cant blame them on that.
    If GR can bring in what he’s after so be it

  • Swedish Bluenose says:

    I just saw that Gary Rowett is talking about, on the BCFC website, a potential target and confirms interest in defender Marc Roberts of Halifax from the Conference league.
    This must be quite unusual, I have never seen speculations about potential acquisitions on our official website.
    Normally they just publish the story when the deal is done.
    So could this be just for putting pressure in the last January week on an agent who wants too much for Roberts? Gary is talking about Marc as someone he has watched for a long time since the guy was 19, now he’s 24, but he also says that Marc maybe is “having the potential after a period of time to play at this level” and says that he could be considered “maybe as a third or fourth choice centre-back is a long-term option”.
    Interesting anyway, what do you think?

    • Blue lizard says:

      I’m thinking we need someone proven at this level who can hit the ground running not an unknown!!

    • The Flying Pig says:

      I would want to know how GR sees this chap in relation to the promising kid(s) he has in the youth teams. If he’s considered a safer option and can be acquired cheaply then I’d suggest he’d be worth a punt.
      On your other point about the openness of coveting another club’s player, it’s happening to us with Gray to some extent and it seems to me that the usual rules on tapping up seems to be relaxed a bit… or is it more the case that there’s just extra media hype making it appear worse than it is?

  • Raymondo says:

    I think that we don’y have to rush into paying morre than players are worth because the window closes in a few days. Better players could be available when the loan window re-opens, perhaps from the top clubs? Nil desperandum I say, we coped fora large proportion of the game withoutt Morrisson the other night and we can do it again for a few games until we get who GR wants. KRO

  • Hillfield Blues says:

    Morrison could be 6 weeks according to GR. With just Spector who’s coming back off a long lay off as the only back up we need a centre back pronto. Giving Edgar to Huddersfield for the rest of the season was a mistake as he did well there before his sending off.

  • Richard Granfield says:

    Ben Turner won’t be joining Blues’. He is out injured for 10 to 12 weeks.
    He would have been ideal.

    • tmsblues says:

      Turner non availability is a real shame that move would have been perfect for both parties. we should get him in the summer. Having Spector and Robinson , two of the smallest centre defence partnerships in the division fills me with dread and ones too old and the other an injury risk. I suspect Mr Jerome will run their legs off on Saturday and even he might win the majority of balls in the air against our makeshift pairing. Grounds our tallest available defender would I have often thought make a centre back left side that would give an opportunity for Hancox or a new signing. Mind whoever plays full back will have a torrid time v Redmond I guess?! Dorans signature or on loan would be good if its possible but I suspect Pulis the old fox will wait till last minute and offer him plus a couple of million for Gray. Anyone offering 5m for Gray should have their hands snapped off and probably will sometime Monday night. Maybe if its a Prem buyer like Liverpool we will get loan back deal that’s good for everyone.

      • Richard Granfield says:

        I cannot see the point of a loan back. Blues’ are unlikely to win promotion this season with or without Gray.
        If we continue with the progress under Rowett and Hong Kong decide to sell, then next season we may have a chance. That chance would be heightened if Gray was still with us.

  • tmsblues says:

    There’s still the rumour fed by Tatts that there’s a championship signing in the offing to excite the fans . Wonder who it might be??

  • Dave Mann says:

    Let me think.. Gray signing a new contract , Randolph signing a new contract , Gardner coming back, Cameron coming back , roger Johnson coming back, Kevin Phillips coming out of retirement, robbie savage leaving BBC or BT to make a come back, Duggary putting is boots back on again? ..with the greatest of respect it would have to top all of those to exite me?? .. Yeah, made my point , good !!! Kro

    • StaffsBlue says:

      When we sign a half decent player, I think “Yeah, that’s a good signing.” But excited by a signing? Been a long, long time since that happened. Probably Robbie Savage off the top of my head.

  • Dave Mann says:

    That’s the point is was trying to make staffs without being sarcastic enough !!! Kro

  • Richard Granfield says:

    My most “Exciting” signing has to be Steve Bruce back in 1996.
    A Premier League winning player signing for a second tier team was unforgettable.

  • Dave mann says:

    Duggary will always be the greatest gift blues have ever been given and he has no equal. !! Kto

  • Richard Granfield says:

    My most disappointing sale has to be Bob Latchford in 1974. I was at Upton Park to witness his last game in February of that year. Him leaving was much more of a blow than Trevor going 5 years later.

  • Shirley Blue says:

    It’s looking a bit of a blunder now letting David Edgar go before getting a replacement in first. The two weakest areas in the squad are centre back and defensive midfield and he could cover both. In Gary Rowett we trust though and here’s hoping for another three points tomorrow. Whatever happens tomorrow he has worked wonders over the last three months or so.

    • Richard Granfield says:

      We just have to accept, and I agree with him, that Rowett doesn’t rate Edgar. Edgar is a journey man pro who has been round the block and back.
      Defensive midfield isn’t a weakness unless you don’t rate Davis and Gleeson with Reilly as back up.

      • Shirley Blue says:

        I’m fine with Gleeson and Davis. Reilly is not quite up to this level IMO. GR has been fortunate with injuries up to now but he has earned it the way he has turned around the form of the likes of Gleeson and Shinnie. I just think the squad looks a little thin in central defence and central midfield if we do get injuries and suspensions.

        • Hillfield Blues says:

          I agree Shirley. One thing that GR has had in his favour is an injury free starting eleven since he arrived. It’s glaringly obvious he shouldn’t have loaned him out now we have an injury where Edgar would have naturally filled in. But as you say I think we can allow him one mistake with what he has done since he arrived.

  • RichardM says:

    Just a thought – if Pannu were still calling the shots, I wonder if Gray would have been sold to Bournemouth already? Pannu despite being a “top level executive” showed with the Redmond sale that he was easy meat for more seasoned football negotiators. Perhaps Pavlakis is a little more savvy?

  • Norfolk blue says:

    Well done blues u18s great win against Liverpool in youth cup

  • Dave Mann says:

    Morning all , and yes that was a great win by the under18s last night and beating a team like Liverpool makes the result feel even better and 3-2 is brilliant…,as for today’s game I am buzzing again after Watford defeat to Bournemouth last night which means no matter what happens else where if we win we will only be 8 points of the playoffs, I know it’s a pipe dream but ime sticking with it and why not if we can play like we did in the second half against the baggies it’s still very much possible.. Come on lads lets think positive , there’s enough negative vibes of the pitch and its our job as supporters to keep the faith on the pitch so COME ON and lets get three points today!! Lol&kro

  • StaffsBlue says:

    Jerome on the bench for Norwich. :-/

  • Shirley Blue says:

    That was one for the purist. Precious little excitement as both teams were more concerned about not losing than taking chances to win it. Norwich had done their homework and knew not to over committ and made sure we didn’t hurt them on the break. Two clean sheets but Morrison is a big miss as we seemed to sit even deeper than usual making sure the defence had plenty of protection.

  • StaffsBlue says:

    I think people are getting wise to our tactics and are doing unto us as we are doing unto them. We need to mix it up a bit. Without a plan B, we’re going to see more games like the two this week. In the last 3 games, we’ve been dropping deeper and deeper, leaving Donaldson isolated up front. Even when he wins the ball, there’s no one up there with him to take advantage.

  • chas says:

    Norwich were far the better team,as you would expect, but Blues held them pretty easily. After all the panic about C/H , Spector and Robinson were comfortable. Cotterill held our attack back with his slow passing and Grey is nowhere near as good as Redmond. Our Midfield aree too light,easily knocked off the ball tho. Just how I saw it, a decent point so no complaints.

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