Often Partisan


Transfer deadline day reached an anti-climactic conclusion with Birmingham City resisting all attempts by Bournemouth to prise away teenage winger Demarai Gray. Despite making a fifth bid believed to be in the region of £5mil, Blues turned it down flat saying that the 18-year-old wunderkind was not for sale.

In the end, there were just three players affected by Blues’ transfer deadline dealings – all of them leaving the club on a temporary basis. Winger Mark Duffy has joined League One side Chesterfield until March 1, while young striker Denny Johnstone saw his loan to Conference side Macclesfield Town terminated so he could join Cheltenham Town, who play a league higher. The final player involved was James Fry, who has extended his temporary stay at the New Windmill Ground with Leamington.

Although Blues worked hard on a couple of incoming transfers, nothing was eventually doing with Lewis McGugan reportedly turning down the chance to come to Blues in favour of returning to Sheffield Wednesday. Blues were also in the market for a centre-half but that too didn’t come to fruition, with Rowett seemingly happy to not add for the sake of it. The emergency loan window opens in a week’s time and should there be any further issues with injury Blues can always use that route to bring in players.

Naturally, the club are being very bullish in talking up how they resisted the sale of Demarai Gray, using that as evidence that the club isn’t desperate for cash and that rumours of the club going under are very much wide of the mark. It is definitely a positive that Blues can refuse to sell a player for what is a massive sum of money – only £1.7million short of out ourgoing record – but I am wary having seen Blues reject £6.7million for Jack Butland only to sell him for around half that six months later. The truth is no one knows – not even me, sadly – what is going to happen to BIH and I think we have to deal in the here and now. Gray has the opportunity now to play first team football until the end of the season – and maybe attract a bid from a higher placed team which could do his future prospects even more good.

One thing that surprises me is that there is comment online at the moment as to “who is backing Panos” – the inference being that the BCFC and BIH director doesn’t have the power to make the decisions like keeping Gray. I think this comes from the inference that we are desperate for cash – which while understandable having seen the accounts appears not to be the case. The club were insistent at the time of the accounts coming out that there wasn’t a hole in the finances and I remember saying at the time that I would wait until now before I accepted that. That time has now come and I think I have to cast my scepticism aside for now that the club are indeed okay at the moment – although I am concerned for the summer and I would like to hear from Panos and/or BIH what the plan is for the next year.

The club are required to submit forward funding accounts to the League as of March 1 with the possibility of a transfer embargo if the league aren’t happy – as Coventry City found out to their peril in 2012. Although I have heard some express doubt that the club can do that, I have heard that the club have been in fairly continual communication with the FL for some time over finances with the FL being happy with the way things are , which leads me to believe that it shouldn’t be an issue.

In short, I think it’s possible to see the actions of Blues in this window as positive or negative – but we won’t know the true ramifications for a while as events unfold. I think it’s too hard to call just where things are going and for now it’s a case of wait and see; the regulatory bodies are making their enquiries in HK, the FL are happy here and Rowett seems happy with his squad. Until any of that changes, it’s as you were.

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97 Responses to “Anticlimax”

  • Blueboi14 says:

    Question to Bluenoses: –

    How would you feel about the return of Roger Johnson who was released by Wolves yesterday?

    He’s only 31, an experienced central defender who IMHO would fit perfectly into Rowetts tactical plans.

    • Will says:

      I would imagine that the dancing in the street reaction to the return of another of our League Cup heroes a couple of months ago would be replicated.

    • Dave mann says:

      Blueboi 14, Roger Johnson would be in my team of the century so far with his man of the match performances week in week out and being a carling cup winner and an unbeatable but he lost his head and thought he was better than he really was and gave up towards the end which his unforgivable ….would I have him back?……..?????? NO ! Kro

    • P Hawkins says:

      I would love Roger Johnson back at Blues if he can produce the form he had before. He was brilliant for us and maybe we could offer him a short term deal in case it didnt work out. Im pretty sure he has his best memories at Blues so maybe he would come back. Despite lack of signings im delighted that we held on to the Boy Wonder*Demarai Gray and we can only benefit as he gets benefit. The challenge now is to secure him to a long term deal.
      Can i say a huge congratulations the Baggies for there capture Fletcher, if he stays fit then he could make all the difference to Albion staying in the premier league

    • Bluenosesol says:

      The “Relegator” does have his demons, any decision to take him on would require a fair degree of psycho-analysis to feed the decision!

    • Strettonbluenose says:

      Johnson was also at the heart of the defence that was relegated and shipped 5 goals twice. He showed no humility and took no responsibility for that and no gratitude for Blues making him a millionaire, some of which came out of my pocket. His interview on Central news playing golf with his new Wolves cronies was disgraceful. I wouldn’t p*ss on the arrogant tw*t if he was on fire!

  • DoctorD says:

    £5 million seems an awful lot of money to turn down for an 18-year-old who had made barely a couple of dozen appearances. But a lot of goodwill — which you can’t put a figure on — would have been sucked out of the club if he had left, potentially affecting future gate receipts. His departure to a supposedly lesser club would also have left a very nasty taste in many fans’ mouths.

    • P Hawkins says:

      Its a statement of intent from Blues that we are no longer gonna sell our assets cheaply again. Im pretty sure that Blues are also looking at what he could be potentially worth in the future so everybody is a winner. I certainly would have turned down 5 million.

      • tmsblues says:

        And when and if the chips are down I the summer and everyone realises we are without funds to do the forward plan we will sell him for £2m or Bournmouths first bid + ! We should have snapped their hands off….. at £5m !

  • Dave mann says:

    I think it’s all positive from yesterday… Disappointed yes that we didn’t get anyone in but rowett said he wants players who can push for the first 11 and he’s not gonna just make the numbers up with squad players because he wanted to reduce the numbers and that he has done so no panic on my side… Keeping gray was great for the team the manager and the supporters and more so for gray himself! … Now we move on to Fulham with 3,000 bluenoses going on Saturday and we now no what we’ve got but the loan window opens next week and ime pretty sure that a couple will come in then but only if they can push for first team football and not just to bulk up the squad!! Kro

  • DaveP says:

    If our former CEO had still been in charge I would have expected Randolph, Cotterill, Donaldson and Gray to go for £6m combined yesterday, probably around 10.45pm

  • Tony E says:

    Spurs have paid MK Dons £5m for a lad who has not played above division one level, surely that means Gray is worth more.

  • Dave mann says:

    That’s why we didn’t sell him Tony…£7/8 million might have swung it but then would gray want to go to Bournemouth ? ..apparently only a premiership club would have done for him but would he have been forced to go if that money had been offered? .. Interesting dont you think! Kro

    • Bluenosesol says:

      I wouldn’t expect Bournemouth to sustain this seasons levels for another season. If Bournemouth fail to get promotion, then Gray would have found himself a top player in a mediocre championship team.

      • RichardM says:

        That said I expect Bournemouth to go up this season, so if they want him that badly I think they probably will get him in the summer – fine as long as it’s in the region of £6 – 7 million plus add-ons. Mind you, he needs to sign that contract first….

      • StaffsBlue says:

        A lot of people feel Bournemouth will go up this season, but I’m not so sure myself. They’ve done excellently so far, but there are 3 months to go and I think they may fall away myself. Derby are getting stronger, Middlesborough too. Ipswich and Watford have experience in the top 6 and I’m sure Wolves and Norwich will come again. If Bournemouth best that lot and go up, they will have deserved it.

  • Richard Granfield says:

    I don’t want to be overly critical, but Blues congratulating themselves for keeping Gray on board when the club hold all the cards I.e. contract until 2016.
    Or am I missing something?

  • Beegeeblueboy says:

    I’m not happy with Spector in a starting XI especially at centre half. There’s always an unforced error around the corner

  • The Francis Fake says:

    These are the sort of anti climaxes that I enjoy. For Blues to turn down £5M for Gray is a tremendous boost as it demonstrates two things. 1. The club is not desperate for liquid cash. 2. The board at BIH are supportive of the footballing side and not concerned about lining their own pockets. If Pannu had greater influence I feel sure that Gray would have been sold like Redmond and Butland for a pittance. Bearing in mind that there are great divisions between the shareholders we all have to be grateful that there is at least a degree of stability on the football side, although I yearn for the day when we have new owners.

  • nicko says:

    good morning all yes its nice to keep grey and also kevin broadhurst told the media that grey does not want to leave blues. kevin speaks to grey at the training ground most weeks.it looks like mr pannu does not have a say what happens to our club which can only be good news kro

  • AussieBlue says:

    Balls of steel. Birmingham balls were always the hardest and best in the world. Dimmi, you are much loved here and I for one am delighted you are staying for now. You’ll be a 10 mill player one day.

    • P Hawkins says:

      I dont think that day is too far away mate when you consider the rediculous prices of other players. I have been so impressed with Dimmy this season when you consider this is his first proper season in the first team. Every time he gets hold of the ball it raises bums of seats and you anticipate that something will happen. I do feel he has the ability to go higher and its only matter of time before a big six club makes a offer we cant refuse. As much as i dont want to lose the player because Blues will get alot of money for him and also we are lucky to have an amazing academy that have future Demarai Gray’s waiting to step into the limelight.

      • Jazzzy786 says:

        I watched pur academy versus Liverpool academy in the FA youth cup victory the other day and we have some very talented youngsters on the books.I was really surprised at how good the level of football was. I think some of the players could actually be blooded into the first team now thats how good they were.

  • Mineheadblue says:

    Personally, I’m very pleased that we hung on to Demari Gray. Apparently he didn’t want to go anyway and now that the pressure is off, I hope that he can relax and continue to develop and enjoy his football. If he continues to improve and signs a new deal, he’s going to be worth at least as much next season.

    With regard to Roger Johnson, I always thought that he was at his best alongside Scott Dan and less good without. Having said that, he could still be worth a punt on a free and if anyone can restore his confidence, it would be Sir Gary. KRO

  • garconsavage says:

    Brian Dick Blues’ correspondent for the Mail was reporting yesterday that the instruction that Dimmy was not for sale came directly from HK. Perhaps this means that “the good guys” are starting to win the power struggle at BIH.

  • Dino Tiltoni says:

    Roger the Relegator has been discussed as a possible. He’d need a better player to play alongside than anyone we’ve got at the back.

    • DaveP says:

      He’ll never be as good as 2010/11 and in the Carling Cup final when he played the second half with one leg hanging off! I doubt if many Blues fans forgive him for jumping ship just to line his pockets either.

      • RichardM says:

        I don’ think that’s fair – he wanted to play Premiership football, something that at the time Wolves could offer and we couldn’t. At least he was gracious to the Blues on his exit, unlike Craig “No Brainer” Gardner!

        • Dave mann says:

          Richard, I know Craig Gardner he comes on to my centre whenever he’s visiting is parents in Coleshill …he was told to leave not wanted to leave.. Johnson was the opposite so please don’t do the no brainer one … Gardner a blue, Johnstone a knob! Kro

  • cbrccc says:

    Dont say that as Op will be oiot of a job .
    Very few have benefited from our demise but he is definately one of them.

  • cbrccc says:

    Forgot to mention that my post was in reply “the good guys are winning”post post .

  • Dave Mann says:

    Lest not forget that the carling cup team/squad also got us relegated so sometimes going back is not the way to do things….great memories and our greatest day at wembley can not be equaled but then again we’ve got zigic now some fans want Johnson so lets try and get Gardner, Larsson, foster and martins back and were be half way there…. Seriously though I said no to Johnson but thinking again what have we got to loose, he will cost nothing and his wages will be in context with the rest of the squad and if he’s not upto it we can just let him go and thank him for trying!! Kro

  • Alan Crawford says:

    If he’s half the player he was 3 years ago it will be a good signing.

  • Raymondo says:

    You have to wonder why his contract was ended so abruptly by Wolves. If it was due to his attitude the I don’t think we should touch him. Anyone getting a championship footballers r’ate of pay (even at our rate at Blues) should be willing to put in a shift in every week or be ashamed of himeself.

    • StaffsBlue says:

      I think it was probably more the fact that they didn’t want a player at the club any longer that they couldn’t move out and was never going to play for them again, the same as O’Hara and a few others. Just clearing out the dead wood I would assume.

    • Bluenosesol says:

      Johnson went public in his reasons for not wanting to leave Wolves. He asked why shouldn’t he stay whilst on a £25k a week contract whether he was picked or not. He also turned up intoxicated for training and Jackett barred him from training with the first team.

  • StaffsBlue says:

    I’m not too disappointed that we didn’t bring anyone in yesterday. The loan window opens next week and it makes sense to only take on temporary players for the last 3 months of the season and see where we stand in the summer. If by some stroke of good fortune, we just miss out on the play offs by a few places, Rowett will know what he needs to add to the squad to give us that extra impetus for another bash at it next season.

    • P hawkins says:

      I feel like we got a new signing in Dimmy because I feel all the rumours surrounding him over the last few weeks couldn’t have helped him. At least now he can relax and continue to enjoy his football. Look out Championship Gray is coming to get ya lol

  • Blueshark says:

    Wolves fans have told me what a poor attitude Johnson has had during his time there.

    We dont want anyone poisoning the dressing room. Remember when he was here before any negative messing by RJ was probably slapped down by any number of strong characters (Carr, Bowyer, Fergie etc).

  • Blue Lizard says:

    Saw Johnson recently on Soccer AM ..he came across as a big headed arrogant tosser who was feeling sorry for himself….I hope Blues steer well away.

  • Sean Luke says:

    The owners of this football Club have been lambasted in the past and rightly so, but I think we must take some heart they ro have some interest in club doing well. The refusal to sell Gray for 5 million, which in my opinion is a bloody good bid for an 18 year old with little experience and unproven track record. Yes he is good, but apart from the hatrick and a few glimpses, I have not seen nothing that really blows me away.

  • Roy Smith says:

    Why do some people think that a player that was nowhere good enough for Wolves would be a good acquisition for Blues?
    Yes at one time he performed well for us, but he’s an egocentric has been with no loyalty to anyone but himself. Let him stay at home and count his money.

  • Dave mann says:

    That’s propably what he will do Roy because no premiership club or championship club will touch him on £25,000 a week… It’s seriously quite amazing how he’s gone from a top centre half for us and being talked about for England to leaving us and being crap and unwanted.. Very strange!.. But then that’s propably down to his own ego and self confidence..shame realy, but won’t loose any sleep over it !! Kro

  • rhees says:

    Said before Scott Dan made Johnson look good when Dan was Injured it showed Johnson for the player he really was. No Thankyou to johnson

    • steve says:

      Dann and Johnson complemented each other. Johnson was a no nonsense get in the way of everything centre half,whilst Dann was a more cultured football playing centre half.

  • Dave mann says:

    rhees, was Johnson absolutely immense and had the game of his life with only one leg in the second half in the carling cup final alongside juranek when damn missed the final through injury.. Didn’t look to me as though he needed Scott dann that day… They were a good partnership yes but then you could say that about most of the great centre halves over the years .. You have to work together, ime not saying Johnson is a great centre half but he was better than Scott dan , period!!! Kro

    • rhees says:

      Dave man Johnson had the game of his life at Wembley however he wasn’t that injured really was he how many games he miss??
      He went to wolves they went down and down and are climbing back without him. Dan is still playing in premier league not kicked out of a club. Johnson was average at best as shown when we fell apart after cup final.
      There is no comparison between them really.
      I agree they made a good partnership but that was mainly due to dans influence
      Still no thanks to Johnson from me !! Kro

      • Dave mann says:

        After the cup final rhees I agree that he was only average in a team that got relegated.. The trouble was the rest of them were crap..danns attitude was better than johnsons and that’s why he’s playing at a higher level .. On the pitch Johnson was the gouvenor and dann is deputy !! Kro

  • Eric says:

    Roger Johnson = YES…he was superb for us. But only if Rowett wants him…

  • Vicarpoof says:

    Roger Johnson = NO because he has been signed by Charlton

  • Wingman Blue says:

    Johnson, no. Scott Dann, yes.

  • Dave Mann says:

    Johnson.. No , dann..No ..kro

  • Goodie says:

    Roger and Scott will never be toddy the best number 6 to play for blues

  • bluenose08 says:

    r.i.p. sir jack Hayward. if carling made football club owners then they would be like jack Hayward.

  • StaffsBlue says:

    It seems that Lewis McGugan believes Sheffield Wednesday are realistic play-off challengers. Also, he said “I wanted to go to a club where I felt wanted.”

    Ahhh.. so that’s where Rowett went wrong. He didn’t offer cuddles as part of the deal. The poor thing. Looks like we had a lucky escape.

  • Raymondo says:

    All in all I feel more confident about our survival (or better) than I have done in recent years . If we did get up via the play-offs (a long shot) then it would be a draedfull struggle next season, as it has been for Leicester and will be for Derby and Bournemouth if, as expected they go up. It can be better to travel hopefully than to arrive. An eventual takeover by somebody with plenty of the folding stuff wouold be best of all. Look forward to getting a few new faces when the loan market opens. KRO

    • StaffsBlue says:

      If we were promoted this season, next season would be an utter disaster. Can you see this board spending the millions we’d need to even give us the chance to compete? Until we have new owners, I’d be quite happy to see us competing at the top end of the Championship and to see some decent football.

    • RichardM says:

      It’s a tough one – instinctively you want them to make it to the play-offs and hopefully win it – even though you know they’re nowhere near ready for the Premier.

      That said, money talks, even coming bottom of the Premier is a big cash pay-out followed by the next 4 years parachute payments, would we take a year of pain and humiliation to secure the finances of the club? (assuming it’s not all cyphoned off in HK….)

  • Dave Mann says:

    I understand where your coming from staffs but if Gary rowett WAS to steer blues into the playoffs and through to wembley and then the premiership ( I know it’s a long shot ) the amount of praise and media attention we would get for a remarkable job done by the team and the manager would more than compensate for what we all believe would be an impossible season in the premier league the following season…vile have only scored 11goals in the premiership all season, now that is humiliation and I don’t believe that being relegated with the squad we’ve got now would be to embarrassing , just my opinion but fair enough if you don’t agree!! Kro

    • StaffsBlue says:

      Don’t get me wrong Dave, it would be nice to get promotion, but if we did get hammered the next season, it could have an effect for years. Look how long it’s taken Derby to get near again. I just don’t think promotion is imperative at the moment. Stability for a season or two would serve us better. Just a little difference of opinion mate, but we both have the club’s interest at heart. ;)

      • atko says:

        Burnley haven’t done that bad with no major stars & certainly haven’t been hammered week in, week out. One thing that nobody can take away from GR is he is bloody good at getting the best out of what he has to work with so far. Obviously it’s far too early to be talking about playoffs as anything can happen but it certainly wouldn’t be a disaster. I would go as far as to say, with any other manager I would be worried if we got a chance at the Premier League next year but with GR in charge a disaster it wouldn’t be!

  • Paulant says:

    Not interested in Roger Johnson, would probably be as ineffective as Nicola Zigic.

    I,m very Happy we kept Demmy Gray but it confuses the situation at BIHL. Mostly we hear they are in meltdown, then they turn down £5 million.
    Maybe its not as desperate as we think and they are prepared to back the club to the promised land as it is the only possible way they could ever recoup there ridiculous purchase price.

  • StaffsBlue says:

    I think the Gray situation will continue to rear it’s ugly head, until he decides if he’s going to sign the contract he’s been offered. But, even if he does, other clubs won’t respect that.

    • Dave Mann says:

      If he does not sign that contract staffs he’s gone in the summer end off no argument but if he does sign it then that gives us the upper hand as far as length and the amount we can ask for if a premiership team come in because he told your mate broadhurst that he’s not going to another championship club…..if and it’s a big IF we did produce the miracle of promotion then the problem will resolve itself because we wouldn’t need to sell and he would be in the premiership , everyone’s happy!!…except you mate!!! ( only joking) lol&kro

  • Blue Lizard says:

    I’m as passionate Blue as it is possible to be …I come from generations of an Old Small Heath family some still in Brum,some scattered across the country now but still all Blues fans….I would hate to get promoted just to become the whipping boys.i’d gladly settle for stability and an even keel till new owners with the clubs interest at heart are found. i’m not foolish enough to think that any owner would be doing it for fun it’s business pure and simple . The tossers in HK will never get what they paid for it but I think they have taken more out than they would let us know.Although Panos is tied to BIHL he is more of a man than the spineless mollusc Pannu ever will be and I just hope that blues continue to put the club first as the Gray saga showed….they will sell sooner or later! lets hope for sooner! Meanwhile back GR

  • Blue Lizard says:

    PS>>>>>>>>>>When I say sell sooner I was referring to the club …not Gray!!

  • foreverblue says:

    All this talk about Johnson, he’s signed for Charlton. So why is everyone still banging on about it.

  • Hillfield Blues says:

    I agree with staffs. Stability and security of the club has to come first after the last 3-4 yrs. I would also say that my best days as a blues fan have been whilst we have been in this league competing in the playoffs etc. When we actually made it to the Prem the fun seemed to go out of it after the novelty wore off and it was a constant struggle. We will make it back there one day but let’s just enjoy what GR is doing and getting our club back in shape again without heaping too much expectation on his shoulders.

  • atko says:

    GR has confirmed that Morrison’s injury isn’t as bad as first thought although he won’t be making an immediate return. The boss confirms he won’t be rushed back however if it isn’t as bad as first thought & he has been out/rested for a week hopefully it won’t be too long beforehe’s back! Fingers crossed!

  • BeeGeeBlueBoy says:

    Unless we have is serious injury problems were not going to go down and we’re realistically not going to win at least every other game to reach the play-offs so let’s use the rest of the season to ready ourselves for a push for the title next season. That mean perfecting tactical plans B and C and trying players in different positions to see what they can do so that in the summer Gary knows exactly what he has to do to the squad – ie ins and outs.

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