Often Partisan

Winter of Discontent

It was revealed on Saturday morning that Peter Pannu was returning to the UK with the news that talks with one of the HK consortiums interested in Blues have stalled and potentially fizzled out. Whilst the news that a potential new investor may well not come to pass now isn’t great it’s the first real confirmation we’ve had of a potential buyer from the former colony.

It’s evident from reading comments online that the takeover is starting to wear thin on many people’s nerves. There seems to be a growing cynicism in some quarters that there won’t be a takeover to speak of whilst others have cast their personal doubts that another owner from Hong Kong or mainland China itself wouldn’t be a good thing for the club. Whilst I will say that I’m willing to judge any new owner on their relative merits I have to admit that I can at least understand the antipathy from some people even if I don’t share it.

What I find interesting is that whilst this news has broken – based on what I’ve seen it’s come from Mr Pannu direct – there has been no mention of it back in China. Carson is still big news in the press there and I think that a takeover of his English football club by another fairly high profile businessman would be big news but as yet nothing has been mentioned and no comment has been made. Until such time as anything is said we can only take the word of Mr Pannu that these people were interested in buying the club but I would say that from my own investigations I have at least had confirmation from a trusted source that there are definitely consortiums based in Hong Kong who are interested in buying the club. I will be intrigued to see if it is reported in the press in HK – and if it is, if Mr Chan denies interest.

The only person to have gone public in their bid to buy Blues has gone very quiet of late having offered Peter Pannu the chance to prove their bid’s mettle. I think that some people have interpreted that silence to mean that Paladini and his Italian-backed consortium have gone cold on the deal but from what I hear it’s merely a case of Paladini actually biding his time before speaking again. That being said if Mr Paladini was serious about wanting to buy the club before the transfer window in January ends then he really will have to get a move on as we enter the middle third of December.

The problem remains that at this moment in time Blues are no closer to new ownership than they were at the start of the season and despite Lee Clark’s denials to the press I fear massively for the January transfer window. It’s worth noting that Chris Hughton denied to the press before the winter window this year that Ridgewell or Beausejour would be sold – and we know how that turned out. I sincerely hope that this isn’t the winter of our discontent but it’s looking more likely as time goes on.

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51 Responses to “Winter of Discontent”

  • starwars says:

    Cant you get one of your contacts to ask this mr chan directly and see what his reply is.It cant be that hard! merry christmas. ‘feel the force Luke’

  • chris says:

    I can see the vultures now waiting till at least the end of January to make a move.
    A deal cannot now be done in time and any new owner would be mad to agree a deal, unless there are assurances that assets would not be sold.
    The other set of vultures will wait till either the price drops, the club are in admin or the end of Yeung’s trial if it goes against him and this means the end of the season.
    If the only bid on the table is Paladini’s at £17 million up front, then why would anyone pay well over this starting bid and this may well be the reason this Far East interest has cooled if Yeung is still asking for £40 million. He can’t find someone who is a mug to pay over the odds, so far and neither can he seem to find an investor.
    Would you put in money (probably around five to £10 million) unless you could buy control over assets, when the assets are only worth £20 million and the debts are £20 million.
    This means Yeung relinquishing control which he seems unwilling to do.

  • chris says:

    I know it’s the daily mail, but they are saying Dann could be sold to Southhampton.
    Whether it’s true or not does anyone know if we have a sell on clause on him?
    Could help us avoid selling players if we have.

  • chris says:

    I see Jervis scored for Portsmouth against his former loan club Tranmere, bet that went down well !

  • Jaz says:

    Just watched Blues on TV vs Wolves here in Oz. What a load of rubbish, Lee Clark should start Being a Manager instead of trying to be everyones friend, he does not seem to have a grasp of what is taking place in front of him. First half no penetration and the midfield were far to slow in releasing the ball to wide areas.Second half why the hell did Blues start launching the ball forward to King who was obviously down after his school boy screw-up with the Goal and handing it straight back to Wolves When we had posession the movement off the ball was slow and laboured. Clark just sitting there chewing his gum. Sorry Lee that is well below par for any Football Manager.

  • Art Watson says:

    What happened to the “discloseure agreement “?

    Did PP leak out this news or is it just media talk?

  • ChrisG says:

    One thing we do need to sort out sooner rather than later is a new central defender, it was bad enough Caldwell being back in the team on saturday but the fact he was still captain is a joke, Ibanez plays a couple of games then seems to be injured. If LC isn’t gonna blood youngsters in that position then he’s gonna have to bring in more experience. He said in his interview last week that they were preparing for all scenarios in January, so I take it that means if players are sold he has plans B to ZZ in place!!!!. KRO

  • craig says:

    i keep seeing some players talking about what reading did last season and its still all good,we are nothing like reading on or off the pitch,i just hope we follow what nottingham forest did last season they had a good enough run after christmas to stay in this league and got new owners…

  • Art Watson says:

    Reports in to days Sun suggests that Paladini’s bid is back on and could go through by the end of the month.

    You couldn’t make it up could you!,

  • Thongs says:

    I don’t know why he would mention a bidder at this point. And if they have only stalled its even more puzzling. And then announce his trip back to UK?
    I’m too stupid to work it all out so i’ll just say for definite that he is coming back to sack Clark and then Mr Chan will do the deal.

  • RUPERT says:

    There is noone really to sell, Davis 1.5 mill Butland not bad but he aint no 6 or 7 million goalie and Redmond ? The rest I am afraid Pannu your running out of players to sell they have all been sold.

    • Carl Lewis says:

      Is it just me who thinks Redmond is not that good ?? he loses the ball far too often, cant cross a ball, and all too often gives the ball away thro bad passing which immediatly puts our already frail defence on the back foot ?? sorry to be negative to the kid i know he is only young but really we dont need kids who may or may not make it at the moment we are 6 points above relegation. We played very well first half against Wolves but when they stepped it up we seemed to go a bit like a rabbit in a cars headlights. Wolves were not good by anystretch which just shows we are poor and were beaten by a very poor team albeit a freaky goal. It doesnt bode well at the moment, i just cant see what LC is gonna do he seems to have tried all he knows.

      • Ali Duncan says:

        Still learning and growing (although I was puzzled why Hall played on the right on Saturday night and Redmond on the left)

        • John says:

          It has been obvious all season,that one of our problems,was the lack of a natural left footer,to play on the left, resulting in the opposition capitalising on that,because we were only able to mount attacks, down the right,or lumping it up the middle. Hall is a natural left footer,so why play him on the right ? He is still learning the game and experienced fullbacks, don’t allow him to come inside,by jockeying him to the line,so he can’t use his left foot. Never compound a problem by playing players in a position, that they are not comfortable, playing in !

          • Oldbluenose says:

            John;, I found it mind-boggling, myself,!!. When I read the team sheets, I thought it a ” typo ” error, !!.

            As you said yourself, We have been crying out for a natural left footer, since Beau, left, !!.

      • ChrisG says:

        I think Redmond must have Wade Elliot as a mentor….he can’t pass a ball either!!, Elliot drives me nuts at times, he always loses the ball & teams hit us on the break every single time. KRO

  • Grimlin says:

    Seeing that the Hong Kong based guys have pulled out, its a good job Pannu completely burnt all his bridges with the only guy to put money on the table isn’t it.

    We need to rip a stupid prem club off for big money for Redmond quick before people realise he’s nowhere near as good as they think.

  • Mickey07 says:

    The sooner these tossers p… Off out of our club the better…..it’s gone past wearing thin!……

  • Jaffa says:

    What’s happened to your match report aljamir!

    • almajir says:

      I didn’t see the game, so I can’t report on it.

      • prewarblue says:

        Life,s hard at this time of the year for football bloggers,,,,,,,all those kids Christmas parties,,,,,missus demanding you go Shopping,,,,,,just dont leave you enough time to do the important things in life !,,,,,,lol

      • Dan B says:

        Wish I could say the same Almajir, Ended up going (bought the tickets after being highly impressed with the Boro comeback) & it’s fair to say you could copy & paste a lot of pieces from previous match reports and make one up for this game, sad to see the same problems cropping up week after week now

  • Mark Y says:

    I think its important to note Charlie Chans bid has blown out and has only stalled. If Blues were owned by a huge media organisation in China the fanbase could be expanded dramatically and this may be a posiotve bid. I would imagine they would have serious money to invest also. They have obviously been contemplating paying more than Paladine hence PP’s reaction to Paladini’s offer. I suspect that trial postponement has impacted on the negotiations and CY obviously can’t be that desperate to sell now and this I feel why the story has broken from Charlie Chans side. I’m afraid the deferement of the trial; appears to have blown out the water a sale before the end of the January window and PP’s return probably emphasises this situation.

  • kirkus says:

    u did’nt see the game? here’s the match report, total crap

    • Ali Duncan says:

      I think that is a litte harsh.

      The first thirty minutes Blues knocked the ball around well and Caddis was linking up nicely with Hall and Spector had a good amount of possession and was distributing the ball well. Yes we lost our way second half but I felt we weathered a 15 minute period where Wolves dominated and I think LC is totally justified stating we deserved something from the game. In my mind a draw would have been a fair result and, as always, going from home and getting a draw is acceptable. Although that didn’t happen I was happy with the effort, the space that certain players made for themselves and that we attacked straight from the off. In certain games this season many Blues players have been scared to be in possession of the ball, this didn’t happen and I’m hopeful we can give Palace a tough test at Stans on Saturday.

  • Tony says:

    If Pannu has the nerve to set foot in St.Andrews on his return, he will be left in no doubt about the fans feelings on the way the board are handling the sale of the club.

    • Macca Salop Blue says:

      Disagree, I sit about 6 rows under Directors box, we’ve all had opportunity to vent our spleen before and nothing’s happened. Last time I saw Pannu was v Barnsley, but in fairness everyone had either left or was too shocked to start any sort of demonstration . I don’t think it’ll be any different on Saturday. Everyone complains but no one seems to have the energy anymore, demonstration or no demonstration the general feeling seems to be it won’t make any difference.

  • Atahualpa is a BlueNose says:

    It’s obvious that PP has had his brief from CY and has come back to make certain decisions. I believe that one of those is which player(s) to sell in order to keep the club solvent. The best he can probably get is to sell Redmond or Butland and have them loaned straight back to the club until the end of the season, and if he can, to have a decent seel-on clause inserted into the contract.
    Even then, I do not think they will command as hefty a fee as some may think.

    Either PP starts to pave the way for a clean takeover or gets any possible investor to show their hand pretty soon, this crap state of inertia is harming all involved and could set the club back for many a season.

  • Macclad says:

    It was the best I’ve seen us play for a while during the first half on Saturday, although I don’t see that many these days with me being up here and playing myself on Saturdays.
    I didn’t see the second half. I understand Wolves were much better, and that can’t be hard as they were frankly awful in the first half.
    There will certainly be players leaving in January. King and Davies are the two that are likely to leave, given that they could both do a job for a lower premiership or top championship team now. Redmond and Butland are less likely to leave, as their value to another team is not now, but in the future. I would imagine that both of them will leave in the summer should our situation remain the same.
    We have to face reality. It’s better that we sell in January and don’t risk the financial integrity of the club going forward. I don’t see a resolution to the ownership question until after Yeung has had his day in court. We could be still talking about players leaving this time next year!
    Hopefully Clark can get us enough points to keep us up this season.
    On another note, I’m coming down on Saturday, meeting a Palace fan mate of mine and attending the game. I’ll be bringing my calculator to keep score!

  • James says:

    We can take a lot of positives from Saturday; coming out with the usual anti Clarke drivel after the match is poor, or people didn’t see the game. We were unlucky not to come away with a point and with Caddis back in the team, and hopefully Ibanez this week, we should start to see some points on the board.

    As for the takeover, I’m fairly sure that it’s more thin air from Pannu. With the trial being delayed ( for the 83rd time) there will be little movement on this front until he’s back in court, maybe in 2019

    The missing fans could help this Saturday and over the coming weeks; we don’t have a team that’s relegation material, nor are we play offs/automatic – back the manager, back the team and we’ll be ok


    • Ali Duncan says:

      As usual I thought Caddis was excellent. He must have p*ssed off Di Canio something awful as lettinga player of that calibre go is, in my mind, absolute madness.

      What pleased me the most was way we came out of the blocks quickly and really pressed them. Other than Bristol City I’ve not seen us that comfortable with the ball all season so lets hope that attacking mentality continues into the rest of the season.

  • Carl Lewis says:

    Caddis was excellent and has proved a worthwhile acquisition so far but did anyone notice the verbal expletives from LC towards Chris Burke after his 2 poor crosses near the end ???? no wonder players dont appear to want to play for him if hes abusing them like that from the touchline. Davies, Caldwell, Burke, Murphy, this season ????? not a patch on last season hmmmm Chris Hughton good man manager / motivator …. Lee Clarke not !!

    • Bluehobba says:

      I noticed it too and also noticed that there was no encouragement! The guy had only been on 5 mins. I also think the game changed when Spector went off. I would have made the wide men switch back to their own wings when it wasn’t working or brought Burke on then. I don’t think we should play with a lone striker as Marlon King does not win his fair share of headers and the support he gets along side is poor. Elliott is not the guy in a supporting role cos he doesn’t support the striker, Lovenkrands does. Nevertheless Caddis had a cracking and so did Mullins but I always say that don’t I !! But he did, KRO

  • Art Watson says:

    Can’t quite believe what I’m reading from the “happy with Clark fan club”.

    My view of the game is very different to theirs.For most of the first half Wolves were a very poor team and apart from a blockbuster from Caddis we didn’t look capable of scoring .Second half we just didn’t turn up which again exposed the shortfalls of Clark and his management team.

    Seems to me the “happy brigade”have forgotten what it’s like to support a successful team and are content to accept second best.

  • bluenoseb says:

    For me wolves were there for the taking and we didnt capitalize, for all the possesion first half we didnt do anythink with it, we wer resrticted to longrange efforts, no clear cut chances.and second half when wolves stepped it up a gear we had no answers, well more clarke didnt have answers. They doubled up to stop the threat of caddis down the right and doyle dropped in to stop the possesion in midfeild once they did that clark had no plan b to counter their tactics. We did play well for 30mins but what about the other 2thirds of the match?? no matter what way you look at it we lost and didnt play well for full 90mins yet again, And if it hadnt been for caldwell stupid freekick when ebanks blake was going nowhere i dont think either team would of scored, crap game and crap goal to decide it.

  • Paulo says:

    There could also be just a slight possibility that PP is simply coming back home for xmas! Thats all. He also just might come and watch the next round of home games and put a little pressure on the team and LC, and decide it’s all LC’s fault that we (as a team) are failing to be consistent in keeping clean sheets and winning games.
    I doubt any talks are on the table, as he can do that in HK, if he hasn’t done so already. My hunch is it’s investment that BIHL are after anyway.
    As for how we can beat ‘Boro and lose a valuable 3 points to Wolves (which only highlights the fluctuating confidence in the team, therefor equaling the same level in any interested investors or even buyers) ..i’m sure this will be asked.
    As for the fans, don’t expect much.

  • Blue Steve says:

    Spector coming off injured coupled with an improvement from wolves 2nd half changed the game. The system worked well I thought in the first half. 2 holding midfield players in Spector and Mullins (would prefer a different holding CM) allowing Hall and Redmond to have plenty of ball. Unfortunately I thought both were poor. No end product at all. No shots or dangerous crosses I can think of. It did not help that they were on the wrong side. What is wrong with going on the outside and crossing the ball into the box?? I must admit I am a Clark basher. Its hard not to be has made so many mistakes. My mind drifts back to what a Huddersfild fan said when Clark joined he buys lots of players and you may get the odd good one. Caddis appears to be a good one. But I am struggling to think of another. KRO..

  • andy says:

    Lee Clark has every right to shout at Burke for those poor crosses, rather see that than a statue in the dugout like Terry McDermott! As for the game, Wolves were far superior in the second half and im afraid Blues aint good enough and that is not the fault of Clark, its the ownership. The club is running on thin air with player sales the only way to survive. Judge Clark once the club is out of this complete shambles.

  • KeeprightCroydON says:

    Almajir, A while ago in one of your reports you had a theory that there there may not be any far east buyers, and it may be a game that Pannu is playing to get Paladini to up his offer. It’s something I thought was a possibility. I still do, the reason being that none of these interested parties have put their head above the parapet, or been outed. I really find it hard to believe that potential buyers for something like this can retail their anonymity for such a long time.
    I’m strongly of the belief that Paladini is the only person expressing a REAL interest. And I also think Paladini knows this, which is why is is sticking to his guns and trying to force the issue while also being prepared to bide his time.

    • almajir says:

      I can only tell you that in the background I’ve got the ol’ feelers out and I’ve had confirmation from a fairly impeccable source that there does exist interest from HK. Who though – is another question

  • daddybluenose says:

    i reckon PP gets it on with that gigi chao and the club gets the £40 mil thats about the only chance he has of getting any other hong kong backer.kro

  • Gary R says:

    Almajir – do you think it’s only a coincidence that this Charles Chan bloke has been mentioned in press when PP is just about to arrive back in the UK? Possibly going to get in contact again with Paladini?

  • Asif ashiq says:

    Just had caddis burke and spector down in redditch at jd sport. Had a word with them. Caddis was saying he wants to stay at st andrews but could be difficult if swindon want a fee. Spoke to burke and asked him what has changed from last season. Smiled and said the manager and tactics. Cant see him being there much longer

    • Gary R says:

      I’m sorry, but players who blame their form on manager and tactics should look at themselves in the mirror. It’s the worse bloody excuse going. How about, Mr Burke, instead of swanning off at the end of a training session, stay behind and practice crossing a ball, instead of going off to spend your over-inflated wages on playing Golf. Even the best players like Rooney, Scholes, Giggs, Hernandez stay behind to improve themselves. If top class players can do it than so can YOU, Mr Burke, who is distinctively average in comparison!!!

      • Bluehobba says:

        In response to this I quite agree. Once you step over the white line like we have all done ie Saturday semi pro or Sunday league stuff, the players make the decisions. Managers might yell at players to do things but each player must do his job. Again, I did see Clark yelling at Burke not encouraging and he had only been on a few minutes. If there is a problem within the camp then now is the time to sort it even if players / staff don’t want to hear it. Don’t let it fester

  • trueblue says:

    Caddis good going forward but allowed too many crosses to come in when defending.

  • Paulo says:

    I was once told by a very wise american chap I worked with ..’If your football team is failing, you dont sack the players.’
    Of course he wasn’t referring to football at the time, but his analogy is actually quite true …if it looks like a spark is needed for the team, then has the belief gone already? I think we need a collosal explosion really, as it looks to me like the soul of the club is fast dissapearing. That may sound all doom and gloom, but really, what we need is someone who can lead, inspire, protect, coach and bring out the best in all individuals ‘and’ calm the nerves and creating a team that knows and trusts each other.
    ..that’s the job of a manager …isn’t it?

    Results will come if confidence and belief are there ..and a knowledge that their employer is financially sound usually helps too.

  • jazzzy786 says:

    Wolves are a shit team and we lost to them. What does that say about us? The sooner we go into administration the better as that’s the only way we’ll be sold.

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