Often Partisan

The Prodigal Carson

News broke today that Carson is to be allowed to travel to the UK for a period of four days next month, after he pleaded not guilty to five counts of money laundering. His pre-trial date has been set as December 7, and the courts will set the date of his trial then. I thought I’d try and get down some thoughts on the whole thing now as I’ve already had a few emails asking for my comments.

The truth is, I’m not actually sure why it’s so imperative Carson comes over here. I can accept that it’s a good thing to do things face to face, and as he hasn’t met Chris Hughton yet in person it’s probably a good thing that he’ll be able to rectify that. But to meet the fans? I’m quite sure I won’t be discussing Blues over a pint of cider and a bag of pork scratchings with Carson in the pub, and I doubt many other Blues fans will be either.

It’s not just about the antipathy from a large section of the fans towards Carson. Right now, there isn’t much at all Carson can say or do that would be believed. It’s after the transfer window has closed so we can’t buy or sell anyone; who’s going to believe him about who Blues are looking to sign in the winter window, or anything about having money to spend? I think the only thing that would get a positive reaction from the vast majority of fans would be that he’s trying to sell the club and has found a buyer – and that, my friends, I believe is incredibly unlikely.

The people I think it’s most likely Carson is going to see is the Bank. I agree with him that it’s better to do business with the bank face to face rather than over the phone; I’ve certainly got on better with my bank manager by going into the branch rather than the impenetrable phone systems they seem to employ. Then again, I can’t believe Carson has to press 三 to get a customer service representative to speak to him about his account.

I don’t for one second think he’s going to do a moonlight flit though. Could you imagine how that would go down with the Football League, let alone the Chinese authorities? It’s not that I think he isn’t tempted – the idea of doing a runner to live on a beach somewhere in Brazil rather than face fourteen years in chokey would have me tempted too, but the whole thing that’s ingrained into the Chinese psyche about losing face is probably one of the chief things stopping him. Running away would make him an absolute pariah – and for a man who seemingly loves to court publicity in his homeland I think that would be a bit too far.

So in short, Carson’s coming to Brum for the Braga game. My comment – so what? Unless he’s got a wad of cash and/or a couple of investors in tow, I think he’d be better off staying away from the ground – especially given the reception Mr Pannu has had recently. It’s something I in no way condone – but it’s a fact of life that right now Mr Pannu and Mr Yeung aren’t leading the popularity stakes down at St Andrews.

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26 Responses to “The Prodigal Carson”

  • john says:

    Need to monitor this one.
    Heard from a mate who went to the away National game that when the team bus turned up at the Stadium, the blues fans started chanting to PANNU ‘wheres our money gone’ and with that, he took a large wad of notes out of his pocket and waved it at the fans. He then went into the building with a smile on his face.
    Hardly instills confidence to the loyal blues supporters.

    • almajir says:

      To be honest, I see this a different way.

      The fans gave him stick. He gave it them back. From a good source, I heard it got nasty quickly and that Pannu left the game early via a back exit because he felt threatened. The thing that annoys me is that it’s seen as fine to chant and to bait people, but once they have a go back, they’re the devil incarnate. Pannu is human, he’s going to bite – you cannot castigate him for reacting to what was, again what I heard from a good source, intense provocation.

      • john says:

        I think an eliment of professionalism and restraint should be foremost in Pannus mind. To me it sounds like pure arrogance in his part and cant see why you can justify backing him.

  • /figo says:

    I’m not sure in the interests of safety that its a good idea for Mr Yeung to attend any games in the near future. Ultimately we don’t need anymore bad publicity surrounding the club and the owners so i would suggests that Mr Yeung slips into town and then out again un-noticed

  • Jaymeetee says:

    I heard that exact same story too

  • John King says:

    If he comes over here is 100% honest about what has gone on then he could to a certain extent redeem himself. I note in your article that the chinese like to “Save face” well this would imply to me that they put massive value on being thruthfull and straight up as it were. Carson Yeung and Peter Pannu are the complete opposite of this they are in my opinion conniving and devious, they have openly lied to the fans….(No fire sale etc) I believe that they have lied to Chris Hughton as there is no way he would have agreed to the get us promotion in a year thing with the thread bare squad of Youth, Free’s, Loanee’s and ageing players he has been left with. The debacle over the Foster move (Can anyone tell me what it has really achieved??) I believe was done without Hughtons blessing. I understand that Bloggers like yourself and radio presenters like Danter & Ross have to try to remain on the fence to a certain extent but to me there seems an apathy, a resignation, an acceptence that we have to accept this without shaking our fists in the direction of the owners. One official statement from Yeung would have made things so much easier to take, but the total disdain for the fans is unforgivable. Messers Sullivan & Gold truly did do their best for the Blues and as the saying goes: “You dont know what you’ve got till its gone”….KRO though…

  • John King says:

    Also Pannu…Is a proffesional…A club Chairman and a Lawyer….He should rise above baiting. It just demonstrates to me that he is childish and understands nothing about the syche of a football fan….What about the intense provocation that the fans are under watching the club being dis-mantled brick by brick from underneath them, without so much as an apology let alone an explaination from Pannu. Imagine any other chairman in the country waving a wad of money at fans….No only at Birmingham City..

  • Tilts says:

    Personally I wonder if the old bill will be happy to police such an event of him being at the Braga game?

    Has he definitely issued a plea as early reports stated no plea issued?

    On the subject of calling the bank he wont have call centres to deal with as a business as big as a football club with millions of pounds would be relationship managed by an area manager. Basically I feel that he will be hell bent on trying to find a buyer because if the BCFC purchase monies ever get put into the trial allegations then he can kiss goodbye to £17m he loaned us and potentially sale funds….even if he can only get £15m from a quick sale it will be better than losing it as a proceeds of crime element!!!

    The misery continues it’s a good job Hughton is a good manager otherwise we could be on course for back to back relegations!!!

  • Far East Movement says:

    To the above post I would say there is a difference between apathy and doing what you think is best for the club. Now some people will say shouting at Pannu (which turned into a personal attack…. really in the interests of the club….) and ‘shaking their fists’ is the right way… and some dont.

    My view is that they own the club and due to the company laws and football leauge rules shaking your fists/not turning up/protesting etc. does not make a great deal of difference, so rather than be apathetic my view is that you get behind the team – and that is by focusing on the team and not the board.

    Now this is not a knock at those who will do things their way – no one can question the loyalty of fans who travelled to Madiera – it is just important to make the distinction and say not all are showing apathy to the plight of our club.

  • Paul says:

    I have no problem with Pannu and this thing about Pannu having a joke with the fans is silly. I’ve been told the guy was embarrassed and did it to lighten the mood. Pannu has done nothing wrong in all this and gets my full support. KRO!!!!

  • John King says:

    Just to calrify….Shaking our fists in the metaphorical sense is what I really meant…..Questioning things, asking for answers to questions, making our feelings known etc, also getting behind the team is a good way to show your support but at what point do you ask yourself the question why did I not speak up , show my opposition, ask for answers, try to reverse the piliging of the club, is it in the Championship, League 1, League 2 or the Confrence when you ask yourself?? You will like us all, still be behind the team and we can all say I’m still here keeping right on etc like we were when crowds of 6,000 turned up under Cooper in league 1. Why should we have to go back to this BEFORE people speak up. We cannot afford a “It will never happen to us” attitude remember Wolves under the Bhatti Bros. After holding a season ticket for 31 years in a row and travelling thousands of miles supporting the club I have earned the right to ask these footballing carpet baggers to treat us with a little more respect.

  • Shane says:

    Pannu and Yeung have lied throughout there time at BCFC so they need t accept a level of abuse where is the £80 million promised and why do we now have a huge mortgage hanging over our club to pay for his drowning company Pannu is a liar full stop and how come he has disappeared I think Pannu and Yeung are back on 15th September to sell the club or put it into recivership out of spite because Pannu got some stick

  • Blue In Murcia says:

    Shane, wheres your evidence, more internet rubbish, John your just as naive for agreeing with him.

  • Carl says:

    Pannu just administrates the club, he doesn’t have the money – or lack of money. He does what is probably best in keeping the club running. Yet some fans think he ‘deserves’ abuse – as if most of them would be able to do a better job under the circumstances.

    Remember, there’s no evidence that the owners are ‘trying’ to destroy the club or take money from it; there’s plenty of evidence that they spent a fair bit on wages and transfers for a bunch of under performing players (thanks Mr McLeish); over paying and over borrowing to buy the club from our last previous owners – who also handed over a club that had hidden debt (hence the settlement).

    I’m not happy with what’s going on but I certainly don’t blame Pannu.

  • Bluenose John says:

    The comments just show the problem we have: exactly where do we stand? Until we have some transparency speculation will continue and will vary from no faith in the owners all the way through to those who are prepared to give them the benefit of the doubt. The longer it drags on the fewer the latter category is going to be.

  • BD says:

    The biggest problem at Birmingham City as I see it is the total lack of interaction and information from the board.
    The saying no news is good news is a fallacy, a lot of questions were being asked and no one was prepared to stand up and say, this that or the other is going to happen because ….
    Why did McLeish walk out the way he did….
    Nobody saw that coming
    When Ben Foster left, he said the fans deserve to know what is going on….
    We the fans pay our money, deserve an explanation, and have every right to make our feelings known. We love our team, the same as any other set of supporters in the land, it is not like going from Tesco’s to Morrison’s because you are unhappy at the way Tesco’s are treating you.
    Yeung should never have bought the club, there were problems from day one with him, but he has and until he does the best for the club and sells his shares, we are stuck with him,
    Against Nacional at St. Andrews the fans showed there support for the team. CH, he is doing a grand job considering he has his hands tied with who can or can’t play and how and who he can get, he will bring us what we want, promotion, but I don’t think it will be this season unless something dramatic happens for the January window.
    What he has done in the short time with us is produced a team that is interesting to watch, he has a game plan to win and to take the game to the opposition, we have been spoilt with Foster and Hart over the last couple of seasons, now we are back to a Terry Twell, Gary Sprake type keeper…
    That is another story.
    I hope I am wrong but since very little has been happening at St Andrews lately that something is going to knock us all for six and we are looking at the worse case scenario…. Administration
    Hope I am wrong, but I have a gut feeling …
    In the mean time


  • chris says:

    not all a new story but his appointment as deputy chairman and exec director i think is new news.

    The Hong Kong-based company entered into a two-year loan agreement with Yang Yue Zhou, who was appointed executive director and deputy chairman yesterday, according to a statement to the Hong Kong stock exchange. The interest rate for the unsecured loan is 12 percent a year, it said.

    Birmingham shares have been suspended since June 30 when Chairman Carson Yeung was charged with money laundering in a Hong Kong court. Earlier this year, the company said its liabilities exceeded assets by about HK$348 million. Birmingham City was dropped from England’s Premier League last season, three months after winning the League Cup, its first major trophy in 48 years.

    “The loan is borrowed at a very high interest rate and it clearly shows that Birmingham is short of cash,” Castor Pang, Hong Kong-based head of research at Core-Pacific Yamaichi International Ltd., said by phone today. “The company has difficulties generating sustainable cash flow, especially after the football club’s relegation.”

  • chris says:

    they spent over the 40 million mark last season and probably the same the seaon before so they have spent 80 million , trouble is it’s not just about spending money it’s also about having a good wheeler dealer manager and holloway nearly proved it on a shoestring while other more prudent teams than us did so e.g. wba wolves wigan stoke
    yes some of those have spent a fair amount but more wisely than us on players that performed for the whole season
    Maik Taylor, 0 fee + 0.75 wages = 1
    Stephen Carr, 0 fee + 1 wages = 1
    DavidMurphy, 0 fee + 0.5 wages = 0.5
    Lee Bowyer, 0 fee + 1.5 wages = 1.5
    Roger Johnson, 0 fee + 0.75 wages = 0.75
    Liam Ridgewell, 0 fee + 0.75 wages = 0.75
    Sebastian Larsson, 0 fee + 0.75 wages = 0.75
    Craig Gardner, 0 fee + 1.25 wages = 1.25
    Kevin Phillips, 0 fee + 1.5 wages = 1.5
    Cameron Jerome, 0 fee + 1 wages = 1
    Garry O’Connor, 0 fee + 0.25 wages = 0.25 loan then sold free
    Barry Ferguson, 0 fee + 1.5 wages = 1.5
    Colin Doyle, 0 fee + 0.5 wages = 0.5
    Matthew Derbyshire, 0.5 fee + 1 wages = 1.5
    Scott Dann, 0 fee + 0.75 wages = 0.75
    James McFadden, 0 fee + 1.5 wages = 1.5
    Miguel Madera, 0 fee + 1 wages = 1
    Keith Fahey, 0 fee + 0.5 wages = 0.5
    Nikola Zigic, 6 fee + 2.5 wages = 8.5
    Stuart Parnaby, 0 fee + 0.5 wages = 0.5
    Alexander Hleb, 1 fee + 2.5 wages = 3.5
    Jean Beausejour, 3.5 fee + 1 wages = 4.5
    Ben Foster, 6 fee + 2 wages = 8
    Martin Jiranek, 0.5 fee + 1 wages = 1.5
    James O’Shea, 0 fee + 0.25 wages = 0.25
    bentley 1 fee + 1 wages = 2
    martins 1 fee + 1 wages = 2

    total over 45 million thats without the reserves or coaches or manager

  • chris says:

    forgot davies that’s about another 3 million plius about 0.75 million in wages, so total nearly 50 million

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