Often Partisan

Sounds of Silence

“Hello darkness, my old friend” sang Simon and Garfunkel – the dark days do appear to have arrived big time as it now appears Hughton will be confirmed as the new Norwich City manager this afternoon. Yet any questions sent the way of the owners in Hong Kong have been met with nothing more than the sounds of silence.

For the last three days I’ve been trying to coax a comment out of BIHL, only to be met with stony silence. Despite many calls to their office in Wanchai, I’ve not yet got to speak to anyone who can make any comment on what is going on at Blues. Emails sent to board members including Carson Yeung have been ignored. Peter Pannu did reply to state that he would pass on message, but the truth is he is no more a member of the BIH inner circle than I am.

In absolute fairness, there are difficulties in communication. Language barriers mean it can be difficult to speak with any clarity to people – my Cantonese doesn’t stretch past more than a couple of phrases and it appears their English isn’t brilliant – and that’s not taking my flat Brummie accent into consideration. Likewise, there will no doubt have to be caution on what they do say as they will have to be careful not to fall foul of the stock exchange.

I’ve tried to put across the message to the board that the current situation is untenable. The only direction I can see things going currently is down, and I believe it’s imperative that the club is sold on to new owners who can move things forwards. The last thing I want is for the club to stagnate, for people to refuse to renew because of the uncertainty of where the money is going and for protests to start so I’ve also made it clear in my communications that I want them to retain some of their dignity – to walk away from the table with something rather than losing their shirts completely.

I’m unsure if they’ve even listened to me, let alone if I’ve made a difference. However, it’s my firm belief that the more of us who contact them in a polite, dignified manner, the more they will have to take notice. Their contact details are here – you want the HK address – and should you choose to call their opening hours are 2am to 10am UK time. Once again, I must reiterate that abuse will get us nowhere. Please be dignified and respectful in any communication.

With a bit of luck, things will change in the next month and smiles will come back to Blues fans’ faces. All it will take is a small movement – publishing of accounts, appointment of a good new manager and everyone will be feeling groovy.

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73 Responses to “Sounds of Silence”

  • DoctorD says:

    Thanks for the hard work. I will get in touch too.

  • Graham Woodward says:

    Carson Yeung is hardly likely to apply to any emails

  • Liam Moakes says:

    I respect the article and agree with everything you say. However, unless there’s a buyer it’s pretty much meaningless.

    • almajir says:

      Tatts mentioned today in the Mail that there may be someone in the background.

      I have reason to believe that may be true also.

      • nicky wicky says:

        tatts said a lot of things and he seems intent in trying to get our coaching staff to leave. I think he is secretly a closet villa fan!

        • Carl says:

          nicky wicky – have you said a single comment of any worth in the past few days? This website used to be for sensible comments – not your drivel

          • Paul Carter - The Voice Of Reason says:

            Nevertheless it is a fact that ‘Tatts’ doesn’t put a penny into Blues, he gets paid to watch them

  • Atahualpa is a BlueNose says:


    I would like to see alan Curbishley appointed.

    Who would you like to see in the hotseat??

    • almajir says:

      I’m thinking about that at the mo, not sure

      • Atahualpa is a BlueNose says:


        Would you say Yeung junior is fair game, in the sense that he is also on the board and could be contacted?

        He can speak good english, is based in London – as far as I am aware and can surely impress on Yeung senior what sentiments exist back in Blighty towards the current situation??

        • almajir says:

          Personally, I’m not going to try and contact Ryan as I don’t think it’s fair. He may be on the board but the truth is he’s just a lad and he won’t know anything.

          • Atahualpa is a BlueNose says:

            Thats a fair comment.

            No mileage there.

            Thought that it may act as a conduit for getting through to CY.

            Better to concentrate our efforts with the major players.

  • Clive says:

    I thank you for your efforts on behalf of us bluenoses but I think we already know the situation.
    CY is hanging on for grim death and will take our club downwith him.Why?. He has no choiice
    The longer he can keep it going there is at least hope for him someone will dig him out and most of us would do be same faced with financial ruin so realistically there is nothing he can say that can reassure us .

    • nicky wicky says:

      I have been told by the owner of a chinese takeaway friend of mine that apparently carson yeung is not very well known in Hong Kong. He told me when he bought the club that he would be gone in a year or so,and that he had no money and was talking nonsense! seems like it’s coming true?

  • Pete says:

    Thanks for the efforts!!
    Is there an email address as well?
    I reckon the best guy to get hold of is Vico Hui, I think he speaks good English and seemed like a reasonable chap when he was in the UK.
    Like you say, keep it clean and respectful otherwise we would be no better than the Bedsheet Brigade in Witton.

    • almajir says:

      I will say now I’m not going to publicise the email address – because it would be too easy for people to abuse it.

      I am also working on contacting Mr Hui.

      • DoctorD says:

        The fax number is 00 852 2548 2782.
        I have faxed them a polite and well-intentioned letter. Yeah it might not do any good, but still…

      • Euston 9.18 says:

        tatts in the e`mail,writes p`p is expected back next week from h`k.

        maybe someone might like knocking his door ??

        or maybe c`h might be able to tell us what’s going on at BLUES,he kept telling us he knew/was kept informed by p`p what the h`k lot were up 2 ??


  • pierre says:

    whoever we appoint it will have to be somebody out of work,so no compo has to paid.

  • Paul says:

    Thanks Almajir for all your hard work.
    As regards a new manager, we won,t get any of the big names who are on the regular merry go round. We need someone who is attack minded like CH. Some one young and hungry, like Mark Yates maybe.

    • nicky wicky says:

      who’d want to take the job on at the moment? Only maybe a few that we don’t want anyway like McJudas! The transfer embargo will stay in place until the accounts are published,and we don’t know when this lot are going to sell up and leave?Probably when they’ve stripped the club to the bones!

  • AuldBertie says:

    And the Guardian is reporting a compo package of 1 million – what happened to the 2.5 we quoted to the Baggies? When it comes to the players we might as well call in Nicholas Parsons to conduct the sales. And wasn’t Sale of the Century filmed in Norwich!

  • Oldbluenose says:

    Almajir,!!. Your tireless efforts on behalf of we Bluenoses, that do not have the knowledge of how to effect any communication, — Is much appreciated by all, !!.
    Please keep your efforts going as you are the only one who freely communicates with we the fans,

    Thank You,

  • Masaccio says:

    just wait until CH starts taking some players with him from our already thread bare squad….

  • KRO21 says:

    If the correspondence being sent to BIH is in English it may be worth everyone chipping in to get a well written letter translated. Even if it’s the office assistanct picking up the letter on a fax and it not reaching the high levels; word of mouth will travel that the fans are taking the issue to them directly.

  • dan lazaridis says:

    anyone else worried that no manager equals the mass sale of players? there’s no man in charge of the football to upset so i expect the board to decimate the squad via sales before even contemplating appointing a successor to hughton. its hard to be optimistic when there’s nothing to be optimistic about

  • Evesham Blue says:

    Manager would have to be someone out of work who is young and hungry and sees Blues as another stepping stone to the big time. Lee Clark maybe? Or Zola? CH didnt hang around long did he? We could be losing managers on a regular basis as well.

    Question also is what players will go with CH? I have read already Davies linked to go to Norwich as well. Burke would be another contender surely? I cant see Butland staying either. Southampton already sniffing but the big boys will come in for him. What has happened to Foster? Myhill has gone back hasnt he? I cant see Baggies stumping up alot for him due to his wages. If Doyle leaves we could be in the situation with no goalkeepers!

    It is paramount we have this embargo lifted but it doesnt look like happening :(

    If we dont get a manager in quickly then the exodus will haemourage our club as we cant replace them due to embargo.

  • Paul D says:

    I wish Chris hughton well…. Norwich are in the prem, financially ok but hardly anywhere near as big as Birmingham… So he’s gone not to better himself but because he knows that something big is gonna happen and we’re in the deep brown stuff. I love this club as does all the other bluenoses around, its heartbreaking to see this club being torn apart by the chinese….. This mystery buyer waiting in the wings, lets hope he makes a move soon cause we’re doomed!

  • pete says:

    Someone will need to remind Pannu to budget for crowds of 10,000 or less
    So the only way blues will survive is by selling assets and as we speak their agents
    Will be working to get them out. This is a lot worse than last summer.

  • ESONEULB says:

    Good Luck Chris and thanks for the entertainment…KRO

    To be honest until the Yueng situation is resolved one way or another any manager will struggle.. to even keep us in this division.

    But the one thing we do have is some of the best fans in the world… and when things get tough we stand out… it is a pleasure to be part of the Bluenose family….KRO

  • Evesham Blue says:

    What assurances do we have the money we get from sales and other revenue is not going elsewhere out of the club coffers? There are no accounts to say where the money is going.

    Also, with PP in charge is he the best man to look after our interests bearing in mind that he will most likely be out of job IF a takeover ever happens.

    I guess we are in the process of being asset stripped again by a parent company drowning?

  • Atahualpa is a BlueNose says:


    What about something like ‘A Week of Action’.

    For a whole working week – Monday to Friday – we contact five of the key figures in this whole saga and get as many fans as possible to write, phone, email or contact them however possible – simultaneously, on a given day to register our feelings.

    SOMEONE will have to answer the phone, open/read the letter or check the e-mail. Even a few hundred of us doing so will raise eyebrows somewhere in the organisations – even if we never get to know at what level.

    At most it will cost us a few minutes in a day and not much expenditure. It will be seen as concerted effort NOT during a match – which some are very fond of at other clubs – and will show the depth of feeling at this moment.

    Only a thought.

  • mitchell says:

    Given the complete lack of transparency and delays of accounts, I’d be gob smacked if a genuine investor was waiting in the wings. I think you and Tatts do a great job but new investment, in my opinion, is just a smoke screen for more fans to hand over cash for ST under false pretences.

    The likes of Foster, Zigic, Davies, Burke, Redmond, Mutch, Butland et al will now follow suit. As in most walks of life, if your boss goes who you have a good relationship with, you tend to follow suit. make no bones about it, all the storys about us being “strong” over Hughton/WBA are naive at best – the only reason he stayed on is becase the albion would not pay the compo. Couple this with a transfer embargo and we are pretty much doomed and you can understand why CH left.

    I’d love to be positive, hopeful – but CH leaving is the final straw. I’m not interested in jackanory takeover paper talk, nor do I care about PP/BIHL/CY – 90% of people connected to BIHL have remained silent with no disregard for the fans. I want the accounts published and for Carson to leave the club/sell up.

    Apologies in advance for being negative but I just don’t beleive a single word that these people say anymore. They are ruining our club and bleeding it dry.


  • Evesham Blue says:

    Perhaps they will sell everything they can before selling up finally?

  • DevonBlueNose says:

    Hats off to you Almajir for all the hard work you are doing. Much appreciated.

    As for Hughton, surely he has had enough of the uncertainty surrounding the club, and the latest news regarding CY and his house reposession has got to have led to his decision to speak to Norwich; at least they can sign new players through the summer. Cannot blame him, but I wish him well. He supplied us fans with a good season last time, good football seen and higher attendances.

    Please, not Paul Ince as manager!

  • Evesham Blue says:

    What manager in their right mind would want to join us now in this current situation with a transfer embargo and everyone leaving like rats jumping a sinking ship? You dont know how much squad will be left at the end of it. We only have the reserve team coach left….The message is clear everyone is for sale if the price is right. Yet again our owners gambled everything on the premiership with no plan B.

  • Dirty Bertie says:

    So, what are the possibilities now? I would say, “More of the same”

    Based on our experience with him to date, CY will take the Pickwick approach – hold on, something will turn up. Too much in the pot to walk away.

    With the protection of distance, an inscrutable language and a big, burly ex-cop well able to take the flak, CY will string the HKSE along till the court case at least and, under a cloak of commercial confidence, he will provide the Football League with sufficient information to persuade them that Blues will meet their obligations for next year’s Championship, especially if it’s given at a meeting in a Macau hotel and gambling joint with nice young ladies in attendance.

    The team will be a bare bones outfit with a manager in charge who is so desperate to be in the game he’ll take anything.

    And almajir will be hoping we achieve a mid-table position again next year. Only he won’t be as pleasantly surprised with the outcome as he has been this year.

    There will be no quick fix for this mess, it’ll be a long, long road… Nevertheless, KRO and join the Blues Supporters Trust

    • Evesham Blue says:

      Aye I have a feeling CY will cling on until his court case as well. This time around tho we have ever decreasing resources. The manager will have to sign half of team of loanees and the rest are reserves. Dont have to pay their wages until the next parachute payment arrives

    • Paul Carter - The Voice Of Reason says:

      Why? They publicly state that they are not anti board.

      They’re miles out of touch

  • David says:

    In my opinion with directors resigning and trying to pay off loans they are clearing the decks for a sale.

  • dawn says:

    Almajir as always you have done a fantastic job of informing us keep up the good work :) however I am afraid I have to agree with Mitchell I think this mystery buyer is a smoke screen. Whilst I appreciate you would want to buy the club as cheaply as possible surely you would want to buy it in a relatively stable postion with a good platform in which to grow, and most of all “goodwill”, ie top manager, great players & backroom staff and a fantastic fan base – this is what does not make sense to me Blues will not be a viable going concern by the time any potential investor comes in…….the fans are leaving in their droves, the staff are dwindling away….honestly all I can foresee is bust !!! im afraid to say we might all be looking for a new club to go and watch week in week out because St Andrews will become the next Barratt Homes :(:(

  • dawn says:

    ps according to Tom Ross the accounts have now been filed……now thats timely dont you think !!!

  • ironfirst says:

    Accounts filed at companies house


    not yet available for public inspection

  • tony says:

    i would rather be in administration than go on in limbo until cy is in court .Peter pannuccio doesn’t say much and what he does say is 95% bulls**t.You can’t blame CH leaving and it would be nice if he actually came out and said what he knows about whats going on but i doubt we will get to here anything.Having had a season ticket since 19867/87 season and gone through some dark times i just can’t bring myself to give the current board any of my money so until they leave i won’t be renewing my season ticket.

  • andy says:

    Bring in Roy Keane, his no nonsense approach will sort us out!!

  • Ted Kelly says:

    You’re certainly right about at least one thing Almajir… for better or worse, things are about to change in a big way.

    Whilst it is understood that OP (Almajir) is not a Supporters Forum and does not seek to represent the Blues faithful, you are nevertheless widely respected in this community and rather uniquely placed to write a letter to the board on behalf of Blues fans. Not all Blues fans perhaps, but those of us with goodwill and ideas to go with our deep concern.

    If and when you draft your letter in Mandarin, perhaps you could consider the following two recommendations:

    1. We all loved CH and most of us wish him well, but he’s now history. The Club must now target an even better manager… Certainly, with due respect, one with ambitions above managing Norwich City. RECOMMENDATION: There are two outstanding candidates in my view, they could both galvanise the club and neither would cost the earth. They are Ian Holloway and Alan Curbishley.

    2. Clearly the biggest problem facing BCFC at this time is a financial one. Unsurprisingly in their circumstances, it appears the owners cannot get access to funds. Nor will they be keen to sell at a huge loss. With so much dependent upon the timeless Hong Kong courts, what can they do? RECOMMENDATION: Shift the paradigm and attack! Birmingham City still has ALL the potential it has ever had. With a big vision and a stamp of class, Blues can still aspire to become one of the giants. Appoint Gary Cook to present this vision to potential buyers. The former MCFC CEO may not be everyone’s ‘cup of tea’, but he certainly found all the investment that Man City needed.

    Whatever happens, we’ll be there at the end of the road.


  • Wearynose says:

    I have said before, and contrary to what Almajir – generally good and cogent job though he has done – has expressly believed: 1. BCFC is BIHL, BIHL is BCFC. 2. BIHL have no other business involvement, it was a vehicle put together for the purchase of our club. 3. BIHL paid about 1.8 times the value of the club in acquiring it. 4. The investors in BIHL are just that, not very prudent ones in this case but looking for a return no doubt. 5. With relegation from the Prem the shareholders must have become aware of the diminishing value of the club Therefore, they would want to realise every asset that they could to reduce their losses whilst, you would think, maintaining as high a sale value in the club as possible. The proceeds from the assets which have been realised since relegation have gone to HK, and that is what Almajir has doubted. 6. The parachute payments were introduced to cushion the financial effects of relegation. That they don’t appear to have helped in our case indicates that a large proportion of the payments have been transferred to HK. There have been many relegated clubs who have paid more for players after promotion than we did, who bought more players under those circumstances than we did and who paid more, greater salaries than we did. We should not be in one of the most perilous positions ever encountered by a relegated team. The reason must be asset and revenue transfer to HK because of the 1.8x reason.

    For these reasons we shouldn’t be afraid, we should be very afraid. Promotion last season would have made us more saleable for a six to eight week period. We failed and our sale value has plumetted, mainly because of the unknowns concealed by long, long ovderdue accounts. The delay can only be because of difficulties with financial obfuscation. Given the implacability of the shareholders and their disregard for the financial authorities, governmental and footballing, then disregard for the fans is, to them, a minor concern and misdemeanour at most. Therefore, it is probable that they will sell all the players that they can, seize the next parachute payments and wait until the sum of the transfers to HK and the value of the club reach as high a total as they think that they can expect before they look to sell. Given the nature of these shareholders then this might be after one or two further relegations. At some point it might of course include selling the ground, the only brake on this being the poor state of the economy and low property demand and therefore intrinsic value.

    So, I’m all for protests which will have a degree of effectiveness, including faxing and emailing, carried out, as others have said, politely. The best way to gain their attention is to stop buying season tickets and to stop attending matches. That might aid further relegations but it will not change the probability given our current position. It might speed up the process and the time when the club is left to the fans to pick up the pieces, several divisions lower. Wimbledon
    fans did it, Blues fans will have to at some point it would seem. If you want to show your loyalty to the club then organise to meet outside the ground on matchdays and stand outside and shout for the team. An empty stadium with 20,000 fans outside singing for the team would generate huge publicity, not just in the UK but world wide. That show of allegiance would make the club as attractive as possible to potential buyers whilst depriving the BIHL shareholders of a significant proportion of their revenue stream. It would be a great publicity vehicle; it would put the club in the headlines and keep them there week after week. What better advert for a buyer could there be than a huge, proactive fan base behaving respectfully and non-abusively, supporting their club from the ground, but outside it? Come on the 1.8x Movement!

    • almajir says:

      The proceeds from the assets which have been realised since relegation have gone to HK, and that is what Almajir has doubted

      If they have, the club have lied to me for months about it. I’m sorry, but that’s BS.

      • Wearynose says:

        BIHLhave failed to produce accounts on time and this extends now to two trading years. If you believe what the club might have told you, as someone, I assume, not even employed by them – and that would give you no right to and no more likelihood of disclosure to – then you must be somewhat gullible. I have no hard and fast evidence, like you. But the reasons I construct are sound, more so than your faith in these gentlemen. Where has the money from asset sales and parachute revenues gone then given the fact that we are nowhere near the most indebted club ever to have been relgated because our expenditure and contract commitments were not that great? I’m not impressed by your “BS” usage, I thought that you were calling for non abusive correspondence with BIHL. Do not descend to the Four Sheds level of English.

        • almajir says:

          I have no hard and fast evidence

          Then forgive my scepticism. Until you produce hard and fast evidence, I’m much more likely to believe someone who I have a good personal relationship with over a faceless person online.

          And I’m sorry if the BS comment offended you – but I will warn you once again that you are getting dangerously close to libel territory. You say yourself you don’t have evidence – I suggest you be careful what you say until you do so (and that will stand up in a court of law).

          • Wearynose says:

            What I have said is clearly my view, my belief, and I say that. I am entitled to express it as my own opinion in the UK. There have been many more genuinely libellous, and wild, statements on this site in responses in the past. You are as faceless as I am. Is your relationship with the FD? I doubt that he or she would give you sensitive information when the company can’t even publish accounts. Apart from them, the only other people with knowledge would be the CE and the Chairman and they, as your article acknowledges, are incommunicado; that is why you are encouraging people to make contact en masse. Anyone below that cannot know. The logic of my view is sound, the publication of both year’s accounts should disprove it or prove it.

          • almajir says:


            You are entitled to express your view in the UK. However, this is my website, my private domain, it’s my name above the door so to speak – and thus my rules stand. Comments are absolutely at my discretion and if I don’t like them I fully reserve the right to delete them or edit them as I see fit. Thus you will understand that whilst you may believe you are expressing an opinion, I may choose to believe different and act accordingly.

            Furthermore, I think you need to look up what faceless means. My name is on pretty much every page of this site, and my contact details are easily available.

            I’m not going to warn you any further or entertain any further debate on this subject. I’m happy for you to comment on this site but if I feel you (or anyone else) has overstepped the mark, I will remove them – as I have been.

  • Swedish Bluenose says:

    So how do we go from here? Richard Beale will take over temporarily and what managers can we attract with an owner-perhaps-going-to-jail and a transfer embargo? Almost no one. But Birmingham is a big club and there are a lot of unemployed top managers out there. Perhaps someone will take a chance especially if there could be an ownership change coming up?
    But Peter Pannu & Co, please spare us from Mick McCarthy and Alan Curbishley. Perhaps Phil Brown, Steve Coppel and Gianfranco Zola or, someone like Lee Clark who, like Chris H, wants to show what he could be capable of?

  • Paulo says:

    Almajir, having read the earlier posts in this blog page, I am wondering if it might be an idea for some of us to contact anyone we know who is Chinese and speaks Cantonese, that would be able to help us translate a formal, profesional letter to BIHL (or any person of that board directly in particular). I know of one who works in my place.
    But I must state I wouldn’t know what to write in the first place ..to be honest.

    It’s an idea, but I think an English and Cantonese version both together may give a clue that we want an answer, and I can only say that I’m suggesting this as it’s better than doing nothing, and at least someone tried!

    And to those who also read this …yes I’m gutted today, but there is a bigger picture and the next bloke in the dug out can’t perform the miracle we all need ..if the club isn’t owned by someone else who is capable of investing in it soon.

    I also imagine the blues trust might be thinking of something similar ..maybe?

  • bluenose08 says:

    Perhaps you could set up an online petition asking for b.i.h.l. to put the club up for sale !
    Like you said before lets try and avoid demonstrations and sort this out amicably that way hopefully things will get sorted sooner rather than later and if peter pannu is back next week give him a letter to pass on to cy and the board.
    This is without doubt the most informative site on b.c.f.c.

  • I roth says:

    Thought CH would have stayed as one year is nothing, he must know something we don’t. Must be a lot worse than we are reading. If we don’t appoint a manager soon we will lose all the decent players.
    At least we don’t support a boring team, there is always something going on. Wish it all was not so depressing.

  • Ingerlund says:

    I wish it could be diferent but we will have no impact on the outcome of this saga regardless of what we say or do. The situation is financial and legal, and not being our money or c***ks on the block the decisions will be based on damage limitation for the owners/shareholders. Why is PP in HK and not at his desk over here? I believe we will have new owners soon but then the questions start again. Will they invest, what are their interests in BCFC or football for that matter? Its hardly a profit maker even though CY thought it would be, and I believed it could be as long as the owners have enough about them but sadly CY and his mates didnt, or perhaps if the money laundering episode hadnt surfaced we would be quoting a completely different story.

    What will be will be and we will still be waiting at the end of the road because we;love our football club and will always back them regardless of owner, manager and players.

    Good luck to CH at Norwich, he will need it, and as long as his team turn up for every game he will be fine but if they have to wait until they are a goal down to start playing and showing a bit of passion they wont be able to pull it back againts prem teams. Sound like a blues team from last season? Didnt turn up in the biggest game of the year until they were 3-0 down and the same story in 1/3 of the games played last season. Sure it was a great season in the circumstances but a lot of very poor displays against teams we should have taken to the cleaners based on our better performances.

  • Ingerlund says:

    Oh!! and look at the job the Italian nutter did at swindon. The whole club and team were a shambles at the start of the season and he battered them into shape. I think he wouild be brilliant for us in the same way as Holloway at Blackpool and just as entertaining as Bazza Fry. He oozes passion in the same way us noses do so he gets my vote if we cant attract an established name.

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