Often Partisan

History Repeating

June – traditionally the dead time in the football calendar – at least when there is no major tournament on. Blues don’t have a match of any kind for five weeks, and nothing but the odd snippet of transfer news to keep us going until the new season.

This time last year, I talked about how Blues were in stasis – Chris Hughton hadn’t gone anywhere at that point, there was nothing happening on the finance front despite some muttering about the dreaded “A” word and how Blues were still waiting for the company accounts that had caused the league to enforce a transfer embargo on it. It’s strange how history repeats itself –  right now, things feel stalemated due to the continued lack of takeover activity, the lack of money causing Blues to rely on free transfers and more mutterings about the dreaded “A” word.

Yet, like this time last year I feel strangely upbeat. We’re in a better position in some ways than last year as we can actually sign players – and judging by the signings we’ve made so far, Blues have moved away from looking at old lags who “can do a job”; we have stability in the management team as I think I can confidently state Lee Clark is going nowhere and whilst nothing is out in the open yet it does appear more likely than ever that a takeover of the club is possible.

It’s true that there has to be some serious squad rebuilding done this summer but Blues have made their intentions clear already, bringing in five players on Bosman free contracts with Neal Eardley of Blackpool becoming the fifth yesterday. My hope for this month is that Blues will continue this trend, and that Lee Clark will be able to address some of the areas of the team that are seriously weak, such as central defence and left midfield. Hopefully Blues can bring some closure to the four remaining outstanding contracts that have been offered – whilst it would be silly to want players to walk away the quicker that they are able to make a decision the quicker Lee Clark can adjust his plans accordingly. Likewise, hopefully Clark can also sort out the four players he has made available for free transfer to free up some funds for wages to bring in players he wants.

I’ve stressed this a lot over the last year or so, but one thing we have to be is patient. I freely understand that people want transfers concluded ASAP but the fact is we don’t start the season for another two months – it’s not a great rush yet and there is time on the club’s side to ensure that they get the players that they want at the wage structure they want.

Likewise, as much as we’re all itching for information on takeovers etc I think we have to accept that there isn’t much in the public domain for a reason. It’s my belief that Gianni Paladini blew any chance he had of fronting a purchase of the club by conducting so much of his bid through the press and thus we have to accept that if there is anyone in the running they are probably keeping things quiet for a reason. As much as I’m a believer in transparency I also know that there has to be non-disclosure agreements and such like in this sort of field and that when things are ready we will be told by BCFC/BIH, as they have to under regulatory procedures.

Hopefully, come the end of the month we’ll be in a situation where we have a much better idea of what the squad is and how the club stands. As dark as things appear might now I’m fairly confident that things will become better as time goes on.

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156 Responses to “History Repeating”

  • Ainsley says:

    Can say I feel the same in being upbeat, and actually slightly excited about the upcoming season so long as there aren’t too many sales

    also, Is there any truth/ news on the sammy yu takeover rumours?

    • almajir says:

      Ainsley – I assume you read the Birmingham mail mate…

      • Kazakblue says:

        Dan,

        Did you pick up on this, sorry to disturb your day off.

        Napoli chairman Aurelio De Laurentiis says he wants to buy an English club and install Edoardo Reja as manager in a similar arrangement to Udinese’s relationship with Championship side Watford.

        I wonder if anyone has told him about the Blues ??

      • Kazakblue says:

        Anyone know enough Italian to write to the Napoli chairman to have a slight word in his ear about the mighty Blues ??

  • KazakBlue says:

    All Blues supporters wherever they are in the world will never give up on their team, it may be a dead time, but we are seeing some positive movement with players coming in, it is a great pity, that in these times of cutbacks and recession, that four players are seemingly stalling on signing new contracts, whether it be because they are on vacation, being offered reduced terms or their agents playing silly bug*ers, no matter what, St Andrews and the Blues will still be there next year, hopefully with new owners and finance in place.

    I also strongly believe that Blues supporters are spread far and wide around the world, for example I am here in Kazakhstan, where else are other Blue Noses??

  • StaffsBlue says:

    A very good appraisal. I have to be honest though, I’m not looking at the new season in a negative way at all. I’m quite upbeat about it and looking forward to seeing our new team/squad come 3rd August.

    As long as Lee Clark addresses the weak points that you’ve pointed out – central fefence and left midfield – I think we’ll do okay. Personally, I would add a defensive midfielder as a must. We were steamrollered through the middle too many times last season and that needs rectifying. It will be interesting to see Lee Clark solve these problems over the coming weeks. KRO

  • Dom says:

    I think you’ve spelt Neal Eardley wrong. Then again, it’s spelt wrongly in the ‘Latest News’ section on the official website.

  • Art Watson says:

    Almajir,

    Good assessment but with King likely to leave the squad who’s going to score the goals.?

    Last season he scored 14 despite being injured for a large number of games.

    With the eventable sale of Davies and lack of investment I think we will end up with a bolt and bracers team so I do not unfortunatley share your optimism.

  • Evesham blue says:

    I think what it proves is there are plenty of free transfers available out there

  • OzzyBlue says:

    G’Day Kazakblue – I’m on the Isle of Wight…sorry just jesting. Australia of course and there is a little band of us here in Sydney who all grew up in Brum and love the Club dearly. One, who I use to play against at school, is still playing at 60 and is headed to Italy for the masters games in, I think August. He probably should have turned pro he was that good (midfielder) but academia won out. Wherever I roam I run into Brummies – not all Bluenoses. One bloke opened a Balti restaurant not far from me and he was a Villa fan. Had it decked out in Villa memorabilia! I used to grit me teeth before going in there but he did a great Balti which he had learned from one of the Sparkbrook great chefs.
    Being optimistic is a hallmark of being a BCFC supporter; so I’m with Al…can’t wait for September. KRO

    • KazakBlue says:

      G’Day Aussie Blue,

      should be your time to have a few Tinnies I think, 8.45am here on the Steppes between Astana and Pavlodar.

      There are thousands of us all around the world, committed Blue Noses, such a shame we have not got a world location map of where we all are.

      I was once working in the jungle in Gabon, and met a Blue Nose African, who thought Trevor Francis was a living God, pity he never saw Bertie Auld in his prime.

    • KazakBlue says:

      Also,

      a few friends from school days at Bordesley Green Tech went to Australia, great footballers at school, especially our captain Keith Fletcher, who certainly was good enough to play at a very high level, they will all be 60 now.

    • Art Watson says:

      G’day Aussie Blue from sunny Cyprus and its good to hear from you too.

      Friends and I will be in Melbourne and Sydney over Christmas to witness the demolition of the Aussies during the Ashes Series.

      Can’t wait!
      ,

  • andy says:

    Don’t be surprised if King is still with Birmingham next season, with his age, knee problems and a decent wage, I cant see anyone taking him on.

    • StaffsBlue says:

      I wouldn’t be too unhappy if King stuck around. Even at 33, he still knows where the goal is. Players like him and Kevin Phillips will always be at a premium. For me, King is worth his £20k… can’t say the same about Mr. Zigic and his king’s ransom.

  • Sean says:

    Have to agree with Art Watson, I dont feel upbeat, no experience two months do we really think that team going to do better

  • Lee says:

    King is 33, on around 20k a week, I’d be very surprised to see him go

  • John Cartet says:

    Personally speaking…the only way is up. Keep right on etc. This blog is a God send to,me as I teach in Thailand. Us bluenoses are everywhere. Keep up the good work on the blog. Come on Blues.

  • Pete says:

    I feel upbeat for the next season too, However, there is a long time between now and the start of the season. We have more players to sign for defo, BUT there are plenty who could leave yet- so will wait with an open mind.

    However, can anyone tell me about Eardley. Did Blackpool offer him a new contract and was he wanted by them? I am hoping so….

    Also anyone seen the Blackpool season ticket deals? I thought ours were decent but OMG, that is an offer and a half!

    • StaffsBlue says:

      Apparently, Eardly was negotiating with Blackpool to extend his contract. But when Blues came in, he said there was never a doubt he would sign for such a big club.

      • Pete says:

        Never believe a lot of what the players say about why they join a club- e.g. once I met the manager, etc is a load of bullshine most of the time. But I am glad we have taken a player who was wanted.

  • Retired&Weary says:

    No wonder home attendances are so low; too many fans have emigrated or work overseas! It’s what Blues do to you I suppose.
    It’s marvellous that the net gives Bluenoses their daily dose of up to date info.whereever they are.
    Without wishing to set off “The Voice of Reason”, Trouble is blokes 2 miles down the road find that enough as well.

    • KazakBlue says:

      Retired and Weary,

      no matter where we are, retired, emigrated or working, we are still Blue Noses through and through, if not for Often Partisan, then how do we in the back of beyond get our daily fill of the only news worth reading ????

    • Kazakblue says:

      Napoli chairman Aurelio De Laurentiis says he wants to buy an English club and install Edoardo Reja as manager in a similar arrangement to Udinese’s relationship with Championship side Watford.

  • Paul Carter says:

    Can’t wait for the season to start but I’m not optimistic about our chances of either promotion or a takeover but in the bigger scheme of things it’s irrelevant to me anyway. Success for me this year will be in terms of staying up.

    Hope all you ex pats still buy a season ticket and carry on your great support all around the world. When I was in Malaysia for the pre season tournament a few years back I met a Blue from Borneo! Asian lad who had a massive knowledge of the club and team and although living in Pontianak still purchased a season ticket every year. He proved this by showing me the one he had bought with him which was for that upcoming season. Great lad and got the beer in to boot!!

    KRO Lee Clark, you are the leader of this club, it’s public face and a mans man who faces his problems and doesn’t buckle and I am right behind you. Roll on the pre season especially the Shamrock game

    • Drew says:

      ‘Hope all you ex-pats still buy a season ticket’ ? …. Are you off your tits Paul?

      • Paul Carter says:

        Why? Your support has to cease the minute you leave these shores does it?

        • Drew says:

          Like I said Paul….. Off your tits. I’m sure any ex-pat supporter worth their salt buys a season ticket in order ‘to support the club’…….Derrrr……What planet are you actually leaving on Paul?… Planet Paul I suspect…. Numpte.

        • Drew says:

          And before your self righteous ass kicks in to gear…. Yes I can spell living.

    • chas says:

      You let the poor bloke get the Beer in ?? You tight sod.

  • Richard Granfield says:

    Just a word in praise of Mr Lee Clark and the work he is doing. He is a REAL manager crafting a team with little support from the Board.
    Even I could manage teams like Man City,Man Utd,Chelsea et al……Clubs with seemingly endless funds where the manager says he wants X player and tells the MD to buy him.
    Clark lives in the other world of wheeler dealing ,counting the coffers, putting in the hard yards and feeding off scraps.
    As I said Lee Clark is a REAL manager and he has my full support and best wishes.

  • Always a Blue says:

    Plenty of reasons to be cheerful.

    Hancock/Redmond down the left.
    Eardley/Burke down the right
    Shinnie/Reilly midfield
    Zigic/Novac up front
    A goalkeeper that might not be as good as Butland in the long term but should not cost us as many points as he is more experienced.
    Hopefully a back bone of Robbo/zigic plus strong experienced centre midfielder.
    Young vibrant team.
    Players joining us despite background issues which is surprising especially as we are now unable to pay the higher wages(Clarke deserves credit for this)
    Lee Clarke having a proper pre season with a squad that will be made up of lot of his own signings.

    It would be good for the majority of fans to show some support for Lee Clarke
    From the very first home match(positivity can only help) even if they have their doubts.
    Renewing season ticket next week

    • StaffsBlue says:

      As long as fans don’t get on the manager’s and players’ backs after the first defeat. It may take a few weeks to gel all the new players into a team. Give them a chance and give them a clap or two.

  • Ribeyeblue says:

    We have seen plenty of examples in recent years of teams doing well in the Championship on limited budgets with inexpensively assembled squads – and teams who have spent a fortune sometimes struggle. I feel far more optimistic for blues next season than I did this time last year. Clark and his scouting team deserve credit where it is due. They don’t dwell on setbacks (Caddis) but seem to have done their homework and know what they want. Although I have some pity for whoever spent most of the back end of last season watching Scottish football……

    • StaffsBlue says:

      I’d rather watch Scottish football than the boring, tippy-tap football served up in the Premier League. Best cure for insomnia I’ve ever seen. Give me the blood and thunder of the Football League any day.

      • Marky mark says:

        Absolutely bloody right, some of the matches involving the big teams are soooo boring, 50 passes to go nowhere, give me up and at em everyday of the week

  • Cleggy says:

    I don’t think it should be overlooked how well Clarke’s done in capturing Eardley. This is a 24 year old international full back who has premier league experience, don’t forget. All the press reports I’ve read suggest Clarke sold the club and his vision so well Eardley couldn’t refuse. Hats off to you Sir! Shrewd indeed.

  • KeepRightcroydOn says:

    Agree with all the comments above about Elsie and him backroom team. Instead of talking about ‘due deligence’ they are actually going about doing it quietly, quickly and efficiently. Al has often said that Elsie frequently attends development team matches. Most other coaches leave this to their backroom staff to do and report back. He travels the length of the country, goes to Barca to learn about their methods, all this when other head coaches are going on holiday.

    Time will tell how good he is, but I for one believe he deserves a lot of credit for what he’s doing in incredibly difficult circumstances. All you guys getting behind him, good on you. The rest, I urge you to give him your support.

  • Tony says:

    Eardley is a good signing decent player at the right age.

  • Evesham blue says:

    I am starting to think the contract ‘rebels, have had long enough to commit now.

    • StaffsBlue says:

      I’m with you on that. None of the 4 are irreplaceable.

    • Pete says:

      To be fairhey have had two weeks. They have probably been on their holidays and are now awaiting offers. They do have the right to do that- they are hardly rebels. The club could have offered the same terms and I am sure they all would have said yes please, it is the club moving the terms not them. Would you rush into a lower pay bracket or just take a look to see what is out there???

  • jazzzy786 says:

    Clark will get full support now as everyone knows he’s doing an impossible job with his hands tied. His signings in the close season have been good although not sure on Olly Lee and Lee Novak. The best thing is that all the players he’s signed are about 25 years old.

    • StaffsBlue says:

      We should have a bit of a zip about us next season. We’ll have Clark’s Creche on full alert to call on too. :-)

  • Hong Kong bluenose says:

    We need a central defender and a defensive midfielder
    If we can afford their wages then on the freebie market there’s Alex Pearce from reading and Emmanuel crimping from arsenal

  • Tony says:

    The big Worry with Clark is not the players at his disposal but how he uses them ,his tactics and formations, ie playing the most dangerous winger in the division in midfield, ignoring three fit strikers and playing two lighweight midfielders as a front two.
    Playing Elliot out on the left wing hes a central midfielder for gods sake and he is a very useful player.I like him.
    Two areas of play where we were caught out two often was for pace teams just burst past us the other was a diagonal ball over out central defenders they just were too far up the pitch and once past them they could not recover they lacked pace.
    Another area was playing silly 5 yard passes around our own penalty area the amount of times we lost possesion and as a result got into trouble I lost count, I was always taught to put it into row z in situations such as that, Barcelona can play like that we can not. I could go on but would be accused of being negative wouldnt want that.

    • StaffsBlue says:

      I think to be fair tony, that Lee Clark was trying to fit square pegs into round holes, mainly because the round pegs just weren’t doing it. He was trying all sorts to try to get a run of form going. It was late in the season I know, but he finally got there.

      As for silly 5 yard passes… that’s down to individual players who panic under pressure. It’s ok to hit row Z at times, but for me, the sensible out-ball is always to play the ball out to the winger. It takes the pressure off, and allows the defence to move out. Just my opinion of course.

    • Agent Mcleish says:

      That’s because you are negative.

    • Kazakblue says:

      Tony,
      Did you see this today ?

      Napoli chairman Aurelio De Laurentiis says he wants to buy an English club and install Edoardo Reja as manager in a similar arrangement to Udinese’s relationship with Championship side Watford.

      • StaffsBlue says:

        Stuff that. No offense, but I wouldn’t want a First Team of foreign players. One or two is fine, but I wouldn’t want what Watford had last season.

        • Pete says:

          Slightly zenophobic there- BUT I would not want to be a feeder club, where you have no future as players will be passed on to the parent club.

          • StaffsBlue says:

            Not zenophobic in the slightest. Our worst times in recent years have been under foreign owners (the Kumars and this ltest bunch.) That’s not zenophobic, that’s fact. I’m not the only fan who doesn’t want foreign ownership again. Also, I do not want to be owned by anyone just to be a feeder club.

          • StaffsBlue says:

            Also, with lots of foreign players coming in, our young academy players now would most likely not get a look in. That would be to the detriment of our club imo.

          • Pete says:

            My comments were that I did not ant us to be a feeder club so we are agreed upon that. You said nothing about ownership, you just said you dont want foreign players. I get that will be the opinion of many, but for me I do not care where they are from so long as they are loyal and may have a future with us. That is a different issue to the ownership, which you never once refered to. You claim you are not zenaphobic, fair enough…. opinions are there to be different.

          • StaffsBlue says:

            http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/football/22687663

            “Manchester City, Chelsea, Swansea, Stoke and Wigan failing to field an English player under 21 all season.”

            This kind of proves my point. How long before that starts to filter down the leagues?

  • TracyKRO says:

    im more than happy with these signings one is because of there age, we need a cb how about these all out contract, Matthew Kilgallon 29, Elliott Ward 28, Christophe Berra 28, Daniel Ayala 22
    really looking forward to the new season keep them coming Mr Clark well done

    • StaffsBlue says:

      Christophe Berra was a player we were looking at when he was at Hearts. He seemed a cracking prospect at the time. But, he chose Wolves and I think he’s become a bit of a liabilty in the last 2 or 3 years. Not sure I’d take a chance now tbh. I’ve never been sure of Kilgallon.Was a real prospect when he was at Leeds, but his career has gone downhill since. Ward and Ayala, maybe worth a punt, but I’m not sure we could afford their wages, coming down from the Prem. You’re giving it some thought though Tracy. :-)

      • chris says:

        Wasn’t Kilgallon one of those fined by Sunderland for ill Discipline just before the biggest game of the season the other week.
        No don’t need players like that, he’s wages will be too much anyway.

        • TracyKRO says:

          he did have a problem at the club and his wages probly to high like you say, but didn’t we have a player called Pennant who had a tag on his ankle and we still gave him a chance

    • Paul Carter says:

      Bloody hell Trace, you’ll be telling us you know the offside rule next lol!!

      KRO Girl

  • Sri Sri blue says:

    Bluenose in CapeTown spreading the gospel of Birmingham City

  • bluemed says:

    hi people greetings from crete where im enjoying the company of my good mate paul devlin whose son sean is now on the blues books kro

  • chris says:

    Don’t think anyone has mentioned it but isn’t today the day Robbo, Elliot, Asante and Spector are actually out of contract?
    So it looks like they are playing the field and will not be signing.
    So i say to Lee Clark, STUFF THEM, start replacing them.

  • chris says:

    Swindon seem to want Rooney contract reviewed, hope he sticks to his guns, unless we could have Caddis and we’ll subidise some of his wages??
    Maybe one way of geting him IF LC still wants him after he has signed Eardley.
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/football/22713965

    • almajir says:

      Rooney is out of contract, we cannot ask for a fee

    • chas says:

      If they agreed and signed his contract, cant see how they can pull out now without paying him off..Something along the lines of Ziggy and us I would imagine, tho I could be wrong.

  • StaffsBlue says:

    A warm welcome to all Bluenoses in the far-flung corners of the world. KRO!

  • Pete says:

    I think everyone should be cautious to start claiming these are great signings. Hopefully they will be- but I recall people being excited about Mullins, Ambrose, Ben Gordon, Loverkrands this time last year. Lets hope so- but not start heaping pressure just yet…

    • StaffsBlue says:

      Those players have proved to be Premier has-beens. But none of us would have predicted that last summer. As I’ve said before, hindsight is a wonderful thing.

      I don’t think the new recruits are “great” signings, but they’re good solid ones, some with Premier and international experience, others who are hungry to make the step up. And, they’re all, so far, of the right age. Let’s not be negative until we’re given good reason to be so.

      • Pete says:

        Not being negative. However, there is no point in stoking up expectations without reason. People have actually started talking about maybe having a promotion push and play offs being a possibility. I think a touch of realism is needed. You say these are good championship players, but with all due respect the only player we can say that about is Eardley- otherwise they are all unknown and we are still a team so far without Morrison, Ferguson, Caddis, Butland, Robinson or Caldwell, Fahey, King for some of next season, Elliot, Spector, etc. Some might come back- but it is currently a worse squad to last season in my opinion. Lets hope what he can do between now and the transfer window shuts is improve it and he is in a better position of knowing his squad, which was dreadfully lacking last season. After that it is a case of just watching them and hoping they progress.

        • StaffsBlue says:

          With all due respect, I think you’re painting a very gloomy picture. It’s no different to what Hughton faced, or Lee Clark last season. Sure, we’d miss Caddis, Morrison and Ferguson maybe, but they were on loan anyway. And, although they were good, they weren’t great and can be replaced. Caddis already has been. As for the rest, Butland was shaky, Caldwell well-past his sell-by-date, Robinson a stop-gap and Fahey was Mr Nowhere Man. Elliott and Spector aren’t irreplaceable either.. King will be the biggest loss if we can’t replace his goals. I’m happy to wait and see what Lee Clark comes up with in the TWO MONTHS before the start of the seaon.

          • Pete says:

            I think the point I made was lets not get carried away here, as there is time to go. How ths squad compares to Hughtons when arriving I dont know? Hughton had Carr, N’Daw, Townsend, Beausejour, a fit and sharp Caldwell, etc. This may have been loans but there were part of the team. My point is lets wait and see what happens in the 2 months you talk of. I hope we make signings that will push us forward, but will not pressurise the players by talking of promotion, when based on budget our target should be survival.

  • Tony says:

    Mark your comment sums up exactly why we are miles behind in world football the up and at em approach was discredited about 60years ago, when the Hungrians came to town I can still see Billy Wright on his arse looking where Puskas had gone lol he was here a second ago
    As Linnekar said the dark ages.

    • StaffsBlue says:

      One of my pet hates, is the keeper hoofing a long ball upfield to a lone striker. 9 times out of 10, the centre back wins it and the ball comes straight back and puts the defence under pressure again. All last season, it was Butland (whose kicking was crap) hoofing it up to Zigic (who couldn’t head a balloon.) Absolutely pointless most of the time. We had Caddis and Burke/Redmond on the right, and Hancox and Ferguson on the left. What was wrong with using them? Grrr!

      As for Billy Wright and Puskas…. a bit before my time I’m afraid. My growing up era was the World Cup winning sixties. =)

  • Tony says:

    Berra is very similar to Titus Bramble, a disaster waiting to happen utterly useless, never been any good from the day he crossed the border. forget him

    • StaffsBlue says:

      Seconded.

      • Pete says:

        To be honest, I think I would be happy with Bramble. Unless people know an outstanding centre half for free, then I would take one who is generally a decent prem player with the exception of making some errors here or there in the top flight when under more pressure. His experience could be vital. I think a touch of realism is required when we think who we would like and turn our noses up to.

        • StaffsBlue says:

          Sorry, disagree. I think there’s far less pressure in the Prem. Players have much more time on the ball, as opposed to the Football League, where players are on you in a split second. I think signing Bramble would be a disaster.

          • Pete says:

            Shock horror- you disagreed with me Staffsblue! lol. Clearly then the champ has better centre halves than the prem then? Maybe reading of the game and decision making is far more costly in the prem against the strikers that can cost £15m. Agree to disagree me thinks.

        • StaffsBlue says:

          I’m not disagreeing for the sake of it Pete. I just think that Bramble is a poor player. He makes far too many mistakes for me, under pressure or not. And just because a player costs £15m in the Premier… doesn’t mean he’s worth it. Very few are worth the money they cost. My point was, you get far more time on the ball in the Premier, that extra second or two to make decisions. In the Football League, they’re all over you like a rash, you have to think that bit quicker on the ball.

          • Pete says:

            So you are not being pedantic…. just making the arguement that a £15m centre forward does not mean he is worth it….. My point is still there, if the centre halves have to be better in the championship why are not all clubs buying from there and surely the England team should look here for their next squad??? It may be a faster game in championship, but definding against better players is harder and you will be exposed more.

  • Evesham blue says:

    Robbo,Elliot,Spector. Why the feck are we waiting on them? They did a job for us but are not the future. 2 of them could retire and other is on the sick bench most of the time. Asante was injured most of the season as well

  • StaffsBlue says:

    I agree. I don’t think we can afford to hang around for anyone tbh. We need to hit the ground running this season… not have to wait until the end of July like last year to know what team we were left with come kick off. Get ’em in early, so that everyone can get a full pre-season in and all be singing from the same hymn sheet!

  • pedantic pete says:

    I have a colleague who is a Huddersfield fan and he tells me that Lee Clark’s style is to get his squad formed early to prepare for the next season

  • mark says:

    How can no one get excited about forthcoming season….new addition arriving…..it will be like new faces lol. Great to hear from those bluenoses living aboard no wonder our stadium bloody empty lol. Tony are you thinking of emgrating we all chip for you………..

  • mark says:

    This season is quite simply no expectation, get behind the team ,and manager……sorry but me personally 10 games is not enough for clark. But would be in agreement that if we were down the bottom struggling, I would happily concede a change then…. But imo clark will surprise us all……

  • tonyd says:

    Great to hear from Bluenoses around the world. I’m in Myanmar (Burma in old money). I”ll have to change my name to Burma Blue to distinguish myself from Tony!j

    • maurice walters from thailand says:

      not far from you in Thailand still dream of blues in the 50 s what a team Merrick,hall,green,boyd,smith,warhurst,astal,kinsey,brown,murphy,govan blues 9 liverpool 1 and i was there O memorys

      • olden. says:

        Maurice Walters from thailand Yes tha was a great side understandablyy you may have forgotten
        thqt the forward line that day was-Astall ,Lane,Brown, Larkin, Govan brown got a hat trick ,Murphy Astall each a pair every forward scored. The goal of the match was scored for Liverpool by
        Billy liddell who raced through and took a ball coming over his shoulder and hit the net from 15 yds. Arthur Turner the former centre half had taken over as manager a month. before..The attendance was 17514. We were second division champions that season. .The next year we were cup finalists
        and finished 6th . The highest position we ever attained

      • StaffsBlue says:

        I go back to the days of Dave Latchford,Ray Martin, Garry Pendry, Alan Campbell, Roger Hynd, Malcolm Page, Gordon Taylor, Trevor Francis, Bob Latchford, Bob Hatton, Phil Summerhill. That’s not an exact team, but it was that era. I remember a few games just before that, in the Bert Murray, Barry Bridges, Fred Pickering days too. Oh, the memories. =)

        • Kazakblue says:

          StaffsBlue,

          Did you never see the goal Barry Bridges scored against Bob Wilson in the Arsenal goal in the FA Cup replay at St Andrews on the Tuesday night after the draw at Highbury ???

          Bob Wilson still maintains it was the best ever goal scored against him, it was spectacular to say the least.

          • StaffsBlue says:

            Yeah… and Bob was some goalkeeper. You didn’t put the ball past him easily. When I was playing, (surely it was only yesterday) my speciality was the bicycle kick. I copied that off Barry. =) I can’t remember the exact year or division, but I remember him destroying the Vile. 4-2 to Blues iirc.

          • StaffsBlue says:

            Just looked it up. It was 7th October 1967. Aston Villa 2-4 Birmingham City. Twas the old 2nd Division and the attendance was 50,067.

          • Bluenosesol says:

            I was at the 2-4 game. I remember Colin Green decking Charlie Aitken off the ball. None of the officials saw it and the vile didnt even get a free! I’d have been 11 if it was 67.

          • StaffsBlue says:

            I was 14. Colin Green and Charlie Aitken. Now there’s two classy left backs for ya. :-)

  • mark says:

    The 4 players we are waiting on……. That just life.. Maybe their agents are on holiday aswell…….

  • mark says:

    The two players for me personally are Morrison and Ferguson if we get them back. In my estimation that will give blues a fantastic lift…….

  • Evesham blue says:

    Think it is fair to assume that Clark will play the same system as the back end of last season which suits the smaller players. Problem in the champ is you can get bullied out of possession.

    Just think we need to address the CB position now and if we can’t get ferguson and/or Elliot doesn’t re-sign then the left flank.

  • Tony says:

    Sorry Mark I aint going anywhere.

    • mark says:

      Thats great, love pulling your leg Tony, love having the banter kidda…. With regards Johnson had his best years with us. Happy to give him 1 year contract………absolutely right threw himself at everything while with us……..

  • Tony says:

    How about Johnson back ? on vastly reduced wages say 5 grand a week

  • Tony says:

    Talking about Roger Johnson, he may not be the best centre half in the country but he sure as hell is the best actor.
    Does anyone remember that shout against him for a pen against Man City it was a cert but while the ref thought about it for a few seconds Johnson suddenly went into convulsions about 6 medics attended him oxygen the lot. A full 5 mins later the ref had forgotten about it and he had got away with it.
    My eyes was on Craig Bellamy and he was splitting his sides with laughter he deserved an oscar for that Brilliant.

  • StaffsBlue says:

    I have to say, I wouldn’t mind Johnson back. One thing you can guarantee, is 100% from him. You can’t ask more than that. His form nosedived a bit after he went to Wolves, but I think he rediscovered it after Saunders arrived. For me, he was MOTM aginst us in the 2-3 defeat. Pity the rest of the Wolves team didn’t put as much effort in. Johnson would be a yes for me.

    • chas says:

      Richard Dunne is leaving villa , apparently..

    • StaffsBlue says:

      Please God, no!! He’s a bigger liability than Bramble and that’s saying something.

    • Agent McLeish says:

      Wages.

      • Pete says:

        Would gladly have him based on ability and what we need. It is a non-starter though due to injuries and wage demands. I think fans need a reality check over the quality of player we can now go for, we are championship bargain basement shopping and we are no longer a big club who can pull better/calibre players than Bramble and Dunne- unless they are unknown gems nobody else has spotted.

  • TracyKRO says:

    to be honest I wouldn’t mind who we have at cb,lw,cf as long they ready for a battle and play for the shirt,

  • Evesham blue says:

    Is this the same roger Johnson who jumped ship when we were relegated and thought he could be an England player? Now he is plying his trade in league 1 again?

    You are having a giraffe if you want him back. Damn as well what has he done since?

  • JohnBond says:

    Johnson had his days for us no thanks to him or Richard Dunne.. Ayala good young defender on a free.. And Leon Barnett that’s enough cover.. Wouldn’t mind seeing the Middlesbrough Australian striker at blues 2 year contract

    • StaffsBlue says:

      You can stick Leon Barnett where a monkey shoves his nuts. Same league as Bramble. He was dire at The Albion.

    • StaffsBlue says:

      Johnson is more the devil you know. I wouldn’t mind Ayala but I doubt we could afford his wages.

  • Evesham blue says:

    Matthew Upson and Phil Neville are available as well lol

  • Tony says:

    Yes Johnson left he had visions on an England cap he was a bit eerrrr stupid, but hes a trier throws everything in front of the ball and he and Dann did well for us

    • StaffsBlue says:

      Johnson believed his own hype that’s all. The media were most to blame for that. When the papers mentioned Johnson and Dann for England, Wolves and Blackburn fell for it. most Blues fans sniggered into their hands. But, I’d still have Johnson back on a year’s contract with a year’s option.

  • Tony says:

    Dan whats your take on this Italian guy from Napoli looking to buy a championship club would he be interested in us do you think?.

    • StaffsBlue says:

      He wants to do a Watford apparently, buy an English club and turn it into a feeder club for his Italian team. Thanks, but no thanks. I think we’ve had enough of being used and abused by foreign owners.

    • almajir says:

      I need to think about it properly before answering

  • Evesham blue says:

    LC seems to be signing 24 year old bosmans with resale value, a point to prove and lower wages. To do this he needs to sell the club. therefore players will come from smaller clubs than Blues.No point signing has beens on high wages. CB’s can be slightly older I would have thought tho due to the position they play. Looked at the CB Bosmans available and none of the names particularly inspire me

    • StaffsBlue says:

      We need at least one experienced CB, with a bit of nous and another with speed and mobility.

  • Evesham blue says:

    The cm doesn’t look too clever either at the moment. Lee and shinnie replacements for fahey and Gomis. No guarantees Morrison will resign. Think I would prefer some experience in there as well. Bazza ferguson is available lol

    • StaffsBlue says:

      I’ve said all along, we need a defensive midfielder, in the Robbie Savage, David Batty, Roy Keane mould, someone who can put their foot in, but be able to pass too. Not many around these days though. There’s really only older ones I can think of, the likes of Michael Brown and Sean Derry, but we need to go down in age, not up. I’d be interested in anyone’s suggestions for this type of player.

      • mark says:

        CM: Charlie Adam (Blackpool) this is wish full thinking, and blackpool paid I think 1/2mil for, putting the price tag aside for one moment. I believe he would fit in into clark team no problems, and is a excellent footballer, and he is slightly older………. as i said at the start this is wish full thinking…….

        • mark says:

          Danny Murphy another dad army but excellent footballer……is still playing for blackburn????

          • StaffsBlue says:

            Danny Murphy was told he could leave under the previous manager. I’m not sure what his position is now they have a new man in charge. He’s the type we need, but again, wages might dictate.


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