Often Partisan

Kung Hei Fat Choi

Today marks the first day of the Chinese New Year – the year of the Monkey. In Hong Kong the stock exchange will be shut for three days as the local populace celebrates. The sad thing is for us in Birmingham it doesn’t seem to matter that the HKSE will be shut – BIH seems to be in absolute limbo with no sign of further movement.

I know it seems churlish to talk about the overblown, never-ending and incredibly boring saga that is the takeover of Birmingham City Football Club while the good stuff is on the pitch, but I can’t ignore it in the simple hope that it’ll sort itself out. If this sort of stuff bores you, or you think it’s not worth worrying about then please feel free to ignore this piece.

For the last few months, the word was that Chinese New Year was the time when the shares in BIH were expected to be relisted – the first step on the way to the sale process going through. Here we are and the truth is it seems that BIH are as far away as ever. I’m not going to speculate as to why – there’s a lot of possible reasons with a lot of different people who could be at fault – but I am going to say that for me it’s disconcerting that we’re in this situation still.

I get that EY and BIH have a legal obligation to the shareholders of BIH and the HK authorities rather than to us, the fans. I understand it’s a long process; that there is an incredible amount of toxicity within BIH left behind by Carson and Pannu and that the kind of crap that has been left behind is going to take a while to be sorted.

However, I also get that the time left before Carson’s final appeal is slowly decreasing and the odds of him getting his conviction overturned are good; and that should that happen, the whole ball game could change once again. The spectre of (and I’m going to be charitable here) the past mistakes made by the Carson regime when in charge of BIH is slowly raising its ugly head and like pretty much every Blues fan I’ve spoken to of late, I just want an end to it.

I think the worst thing is that I can’t honestly see what any of us can do about it right now – and if there is a feeling I hate it’s the frustration of helplessness because I can’t do anything about a problem I see. I want to believe that things are going to be better but my faith is waivering – and I wonder if I’m the only one.

On a related note, I spent yesterday afternoon in the Chinese quarter in Birmingham yesterday with my daughter to see the Chinese New Year celebrations. In among the stalls hawking fish balls, people handing out lai see containing business cards touting the latest far east betting company and traditional dragon dancers there was – as there has been for the last three successive years – a stall promoting the mob from across the expressway even though they’re having probably the worst period as a club that they have had for 30 years. Yet the one club in the city that is talking about being on the up, that is actually owned by a HK/Chinese business still cannot have a stall there to promote itself to the literal thousands of people present. I can’t help but think it’s an opportunity missed.

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74 Responses to “Kung Hei Fat Choi”

  • Walker says:

    I still find it strange that the football league deem a 2 year period
    For potentially buying the club is deemed to be ok and (fit and proper). With social media and etc nobody knows who Trillion dollar trophies are still.

    It also makes me sick that Brady and Sullivan etc haven’t apologised for causing the demise or a club they built up so well.
    Yes they pocketed a lot of money but surely they know what they did. Doesn’t Brady still live in the area.

    • David Sheedy says:

      You have a short memory Sullivan & Gold did not want to sell and warned us Carson was a crook. We did not listen & paid the price.

      • Mikeyboy says:

        David Sheedy are you for real? They couldn’t wait to go. They stopped caring for 5 years wouldn’t spend what it took and then knew exactly what they were doing when Carson Yeung came. They didn’t care about the club and how it was going to be once they trousered his money. Look at what they did paying themselves when they left as well disgusting

        • Des says:



      • Shirley Blue says:

        Total and utter cobblers. They didn’t warn us about anything and they could have chosen not to sell to Carson if they wanted to.

      • Ted says:

        Are you in their employ? This statement is nonsensical as they did nothing of the sort.

    • Des says:

      WHY the Hell should the gullivans apologise for anything! There should be a statue of them in the kop car park we owe them everything, this eejit CY paid nearly three times the going rate for the club, it looked at the time as if he was a Roman Abramovich (in fact RA paid less for Chelsea)
      Loads of fans wanted the old board gone and made3 it plain that they did,well this is the result!

      Actually I cant believe anyone would have such a strange mentality TO BLAME OLD OWNERS FOR NEW OWNERS ISSUES!


      • almajir says:

        We owe them nothing.

        They were businessmen, in it for the money. They did well by us, and ran the club as a business. Anyone pretending they actually cared is deluding themselves.

        • Des says:


          We owe them EVERYTHING, the club was going to hell in a handcart before they rocked up, they persevered, they gave every manager funds and eventually 8 years after joining, they took us to the promised land, so many magical moments we went from signing non league duds to world cup winners. I am eternally grateful to them, they pocketed a large wedge from CY, good luck to them!
          Magnificent business people & great marketeers one & all, look at the job they are currently doing with the hammers! And I still fantasize bout the lovely Karren Rita!!! HA HA& KRO

  • Andrew says:

    Birmingham City fc has always had a strange method of marketing itself imo. I think we will always struggle like that unless you see some sugar daddy owners take over.

  • southcoastblue says:

    I suspect their answer would go something like…..’we put a lot of money into BCFC and all we got in exchange was a load of abuse. We’re Essex boys (and girls) so we were never going to turn down the chance to buy the ‘ammers. It’s just business and if some idiot wants to give us squillions of pounds for BCFC then we’d be mugs to say no. And you lot were pretty happy when Carson came in, remember all those snide comments about us. Anyway what are you moaning about….you won a trophy and got into Europe for the first time in 50 years. You lot should be thanking us’!

  • James Wong says:

    I’m the new Chairman of the Birmingham Chinese festivals committee (BCFC – yes I’m a Bluenose!) and it was sad to see them taking a stall. I actually said to them “Just as well you won yesterday otherwise no one will come over” – but money is money. Since funding cuts from the council, it was hard to put on a show like yesterday. Manchester airport also took a stall to promote their direct flight to China ( take note BHX)

    Around 25k came throughout the day. Hope you enjoyed the festivities, Daniel.

    Kung Hei Fat Choy everyone and KRO


  • ChrisG says:

    It wouldn’t surprise me that at a time when the Chinese are suddenly throwing millions if not billions of pounds around to promote their game, that what’s gone on at BIH & with CY are being kept a little on the quiet, let’s face it, this whole embarrasing saga would be really bad for business, I mean you wouldn’t go promoting a Cancer as something that is good for you & that’s exactly what they have been to us. I have a bad feeling that this will go on for at least another couple of years yet, but as long as BCFC can stay afloat in that time then it might be worth putting up with.

  • merseypete says:

    Brady and co put NO money into Blues. They made some loans, but made a fortune when they cleared off having long made it clear that they couldn’t be arsed any more.

    • ChrisG says:

      So they never saved us from being wound up, or built new stands, helped us get into the premier league or ran us on a level that other clubs were envious of…mmmm…interesting, and of course if someone offered you 3 times the amount of what your house or car was worth you wouldn’t take it would you?. Whatever you felt about them personally, they were the best thing to happen to BCFC for decades.

      • Ken says:

        At last! Some common sense! Anyone who “blames” Sullivan and Gold for whats happened should extricate their heads from their collective anuses! Of course it’s not their fault! As for all this latest clamour for information, it’s clear that no-one in their right mind will buy BCFC until and unless all the mess is sorted out..and I suspect waiting for CY’s appeal is part of that process

        • ChrisG says:

          Well Ken, having lived thru the Coombses, Wheldon & the Kumars who eventually ran us into the ground, the Golds, Sullivan & Brady were a breath of fresh air

          • Ken says:

            ha yeah same here…the coombes were ok…as for the rest….still remember Ken Wheldon taking bulbs out of the floodlights as the leccy bill was too much ha ha

      • Dave Mann says:

        Correct . KRO

      • Retired&Weary says:

        Can’t disagree with the view that they saved the club from being wound up. They then ran the club sensibly for several years, without at times seeming to have their hearts in it.
        Although they rebuilt 3/4 of the ground it wasn’t with their own money, there were grants at the time because of the all seater stadium requirements, if I remember correctly. They certainly wouldn’t sanction redevelopment of the main stand eye sore because they couldn’t find anybody to pay for it. Same with the new stadium.
        I still feel very uneasy about the sale to Yeung & co. Of course in this day and age many don’t blame people for selling a car for 3 times its value, or investment bankers paying themselves vast bonuses at the expense of everybody else. Wouldn’t a reasonable person be concerned about where the excess money is coming from? The bloke paying me 3 X value for my car could have robbed the bank up the road.
        No doubt they will make another fortune soon selling West Ham after being gifted a new super stadium funded, guess who, by us, the taxpayer!

        • john says:

          The old mainstand was not re-developed because the council would not allow them to remove the blocks of flats which are behnd Birmingham Council also did not back Sullivan & Gold when they wanted to build a new Stadium and Casino which would have brought money and to the city

      • Oldbluenose says:

        Well said Chris, your words a very true mate. — All of them.

  • TonyD says:

    Daai ga gam wah

  • ian says:

    i have nothing but praise for gold and sulivan,
    and this is why,
    i started following blues as a 4 year old kid, with my grandad, watching vincent, vowden and greenoff,
    then came, francis latchford and hatton, and ever since my first game, birmingham city have been a selling club, always having to sell our best players,
    i watched this club in the 3rd division under the kumar’s, and had gold and sullivan not stepped in, and bought us for the over valued price of ONE Pound, st andrews would be history.

    in my opinion, gold would still be here now but for the crowd reaction on the final relegation.
    and to be honest,, in their shoes, i would have done exactly the same.

    • ChrisG says:

      Couldn’t agree more Ian

      • Retroblue 73 says:

        I don’t blame the Golds, Sullivan & Brady for selling one bit. They were idiotically abused which they did not deserve. They got a good price – fair play to them. Wish we had them back…also if people remember Ken Wheldon actually saved the club from going to the wall…

    • chudlt says:

      I agree and witnessed the so called fans who abused Sullivan, his kids, Gold and Brady when we were relegated. I knew when that happened, Sullivan would be off at the first opportunity.

    • Singapore Brum says:

      Gong Xi Fa Cai from Singapore. That’s the Mandarin version used here rather than the Cantonese version used in Hong Kong.

      I also can’t understand the negativity surrounding the Golds and Sullivan. Complete breath of fresh air and for the first time since the mid to late 70’s, there was hope that we actually could become a permanent fixture in the top league.

  • One can only imagine the toxicity of an estimated 40, 000 Birmingham city fans , if Carson young gets his hands on BCFC again and continues to run it by having a firesale at every transfer window , these people are living off used oxygen ,

  • Nigel sale says:

    In the year of the monkey we need to get him off our backs

  • Mickey07 says:

    What the hell is panos pavlakis doing we hear absolulty nothing from him maybe he should update a bit more than he does instead of tweeting nonsense like he does,he’s happy to take the slap on the back and be told he’s brilliant but when we want some info he retreats back into his shell I can’t even remember when he last done some programme notes??swings and roundabouts panos….as for e&y maybe they are happy to drag it out if they are making money at our expense…..

    • almajir says:

      Last programme notes were about three games ago.

      • WalmleySteve says:

        The problem is that the programme notes are generally full of mealy-mouthed platitudes and never provide any proper clarity.

        • almajir says:

          What do you expect?

          No seriously, what do you expect?

          Without even mentioning the fact that Panos cannot say too much for fear of getting in the same crapola Pannu did when he blabbed on here, it’s always, always going to be about PR.

          Actions provide clarity, not words.

          • WalmleySteve says:

            And there’s precious little action in Hong Kong it would appear.

          • almajir says:

            Precious little public action.

            We don’t know what’s going on behind the scenes and what ramifications that has. We can make assumptions (including me) but that’s all that they are – assumptions.

            Plus didn’t we spend our biggest fee for 5 years last month? Lay out 20k per week for Buckley?

    • Texas Pete says:

      He commented on the Fabrinni purchase just over a week ago.

  • Dave Lewis says:

    It’s better than the archers ! Please don’t stop reporting on the shenanigans overseas Dan,I’ve enjoyed your tenacity In trying to unearth what’s been going on and feel it should be recognised by granting you the freedom of B9 !!
    Blues fans are never happier than when they’re moaning. I love the blues like we all do,however there is an attitude at blues that if your not from Birmingham you can’t love the club as much as the locals, the Golds and DS and KB,I am sure would agree with me and so I bet they will feel you should be careful of what you wish for next time,blues fans.
    So we are now in limbo,the wheels will grind slowly but ‘we’ have to stay positive otherwise we’ll end up like that lot at the bottom of the prem and we wouldn’t want that,would we?? Dan for president !

    • Trevor Honnor says:

      I completely agree with this comment. Even your posts to tell us nothing has happened are worth the read. No news is still news, certainly where the takeover/sale is concerned.

      The moaners on here would have even more to say if you went a whole month without telling us that nothing has happened.

  • Oldbluenose says:

    The frustration we all feel over this saga, seems to have reached a never ending stage,?.

    with our valiant efforts on the field, [ and back-stage ] we should be feeling on top of the world, BUT, this spectre remains in the background to haunt us, !!.

  • strettonbluenose says:

    I agree its frustrating and that Yeung regaining control is worrying.
    However, if I understand it right, E&Y will be paid from the sale and so currently no one is creaming anything off. We’ve also only got a loan that for football clubs is small and serviceable. So financiallywe’re not in bad shape.
    I’m concerned about TTA too. They may be like fenway sports group or the glazers or randy lerner or edwin davis or ken bates or bill kenwright. Or gold and sullivan or carson yeung. If we’re lucky they”ll run it like E&Y. And unless they’re like abramovich or mansoor, one thing is certain: many of our fans are going to hate them.

    • AdamTrueBlue says:

      Ok what happens if we are not sold and CY retakes the healm, where does EYs money come from? I for one have no objection to CY if he is cleared of all charges, I just don,t want him to bring his entourage! Kro

  • Kazakblue says:

    Kung Hei Fat Choy, it is such a pity and a wasted opportunity that James Wongs post cannot be looked at more closely by the powers that be in both Birmingham and also HK.
    Knowing China and Hong Kong quite well, I am sure that given the opportunity and financial support, James as well as Daniel and Will in Hong Kong could come up with some ways of promoting the Blues to a potential new series of investors, from both HK and the mainland, the money being spent at the moment, is almost eclipsing the Premier League, if only, I must be wishing on a star, or watching alcohol being sold legally here in Saudi Arabia.

  • With all this bad feeling towards previous owners , perhaps it would hurry things up if the fans had a whip round ,and hire somebody to investigate who TTI owners really are ,

  • I am sorry I missed that DAN , so are they very wealthy people ,

  • Bluey says:

    The takeover saga is tres boring now.Nothing`s going to change in the near future which is very depressing.I hope i`m wrong but i doubt GR will be with us to the end of next season.

  • I must have read your articles DAN going back in previous pages, top rate, it is still hard to comprehend how they can deal in this way , but I bet it comes under health and safety with some of the things you have uncovered DAN , ..KRO

  • Shirley Blue says:

    If we had reputable Chinese owners with a good public image who knew how to run a business properly then I am sure that might be some encouragement for local Chinese people to be interested in Birmingham City. Unfortunately we have pretty much the opposite so there probably wasn’t any point having a stall at yesterday’s event.

  • Dave Mann says:

    Derby sack clement , worrying times for us keeping our manager .

    • Shirley Blue says:

      The only thing Derby have been successful at in recent years is sacking managers. I am sure GR knows that if he doesn’t get them promoted he will be looking for another job. He isn’t under that kind of pressure at Blues Let’s hope he thinks that way if they start looking his way – I am sure he will be on their shortlist.

  • paule says:

    Is it squeaky bum time again Derby have just sacked their manager.

  • Dave Mann says:

    For next season that is .

    • Mitchell says:

      Dave. I think this is always going to be the scenario whenever a decent job becomes vacant. All we can do is hope that the groundwork put in by GR is carried forward by another good manager. GR could be with us for a long time or not so long. At the moment I cannot see him taking a gamble with Derby as he is a careful bloke who imo doesn’t like this roulette game of high stakes. However next season is totally different and it would be a pull for him.

  • ChrisG says:

    I’ve often wondered, if CY hadn’t been arrested where we’d be now, I know it’s all academic & a case of ifs and buts, I don’t know how things work in HK & i’m certainly no legal expert, but surely if CY wins his appeal he would be entitled to sue for false imprisonment, in turn I would have thought both BIH & BCFC would be able to sue the HK authorities for loss of productivity.

  • Hillfield Blues says:

    I hope that Derby sacking Clement doesn’t mean another round of boll*#x surrounding GRs future.We’ve just had it all with the Fulham job and he’s now signed a contract so I’m just going to blank it as it bores me to death.

    • ChrisG says:

      I see Rotherham have sacked Redfern as well after only 4 months in charge. I hope that doesn’t bite us on the arse on saturday, we owe them one for beating us at StAns

  • I don’t think derbys new manager will be Gary rowett , for one they live very near to each other clement and gaz, which would be a bit awkward neighbour wise , they are not signing anyone for three months which sounds like some manager is letting his contract run out to save Derby a fee , and there is a bit of talk of players unrest , where as blues players are GR selected, and will always give their all . GR will get us there KRO

    • Mitchell says:

      I do agree William. GR is not a gambling man and this possible move would not be for him at this moment. Next season is however totally different and imo would be the next step up for him. Whichever way we look at it our club cannot hold on to talents who are destined for better times-whether they be footballers or managers- all brought about by our current situation in HK.

    • StaffsBlue says:

      He’s stated quite clearly that he isn’t interested in a head coach role, at Derby or anywhere else. He doesn’t agree with the DoF role. I can’t see him going back on his word tbh.

  • swissjonny says:

    I think we should be OK for this season.What worries me is if we dont go up and things in HK become really difficult again would GR be tempted by someone like a Sunderland with parachute payment money.He has shown that he is more than capable in our current league and perhaps the idea of gaining promotion and then having a go in the Prem may appeal to him.Strangely though part of me really believes that he wants to be here for the long haul.He is an ex-player,we took a chance on him and he has complete control of matters football.All positive considerations.He is also close enough to home to maintain a good family life.No point in going for the money if you then lose half of it in a torturous divorce with negative impact on your kids.

    • Mitchell says:

      Last sentence swissjonny is an interesting one. However in the big scheme of BCFC, managers come and go and memories continue to be sweet and sour. GR is a good ‘un but not out of this world. Whenever we lose a manager we then get excited about the next etc. Great memories of Brucie and McLeish getting us the cup and a ninth finish cement in my mind for ever. Derby may pass GR by but as you say a Sunderland or another will come knocking. Just need to get a play off this season as I fear it’s our best shot for years. Next season will probably be a ‘backs to the wall’ fiasco if the current HK dealings are to continue.

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