Championship side Birmingham City are lining up an approach for Newcastle United defender Grant Hanley, who could be sold after Newcastle United’s promotion to the top flight.
The former Blackburn Rovers graduate was largely used as backup to the first-team as the Magpies clinched promotion to the Premier League in the first coming. The 25-year-old will undoubtedly want regular playing time for next season, and the Tynesiders are open to offers for their central defender.
League rivals Derby, Sheffield Wednesday and Aston Villa are also monitoring the situation of Hanley, but Harry Redknapp could use his experience to his advantage in order to lure the Scotland international to St Andrew’s. The experienced head coach managed to turn the club’s fortunes in the dying stages of the campaign to keep them in the Championship last term, and he is now eyeing a tilt for promotion with the Midlands club.
Coincidentally, Redknapp was in charge of Tottenham Hotspur who downed the Blues from the Premier League back in the 2010-11 season, and they have since lingered with the relegation zone rather than fighting for the playoff positions. Hanley has been a regular mid-table player in the Championship, and he could be the perfect fit for the club, who no longer have the lanky Krystian Bielik to depend upon. The Arsenal defender played a key role in the defence during his six-month loan stint, but he now appears to be heading to Norwich City on a year-long loan deal. Continue reading “Birmingham City eyeing move for Newcastle United centre-back”
Birmingham City FC manager Harry Redknapp is reportedly keen on signing a new striker this summer.
He wants the star player of his former club Queens Park Rangers, Conor Washington. Washington, 25, joined in the winter window last year from League One outfit Peterborough. He scored 33 goals in 94 matches to earn the move.
Washington netted nine times in Ian Holloway’s team, helping them overcome the threat of relegation. Redknapp has identified him as a player that can contribute significantly to the firepower of the team. He was part of the Northern Ireland side that lost to the semi-final reaching Welsh counterparts at Euro 2016. He has ten caps on the international stage and seems to be a good addition to Birmingham.
Redknapphas also been linked with former Tottenham striker Robbie Keane and Peter Crouch. Eleven players left the club last year and the manager is already working on setting up his own personnel.
Redknapp might bring back Benoit Assou-Ekotto to St Andrews as there seems to be a bond between the pair. It is surprising that with Cheick Keita and Jonathan Grounds, the coach still wants Assou-Ekotto. The player was a regular under the manager whilst the pair was at White Hart Lane. It seems the bond is playing a strong role in his return to the club.
With the player acquired by former managers, Redknapp would likely reduce them and bring his own. For now Paul Robinson, Craig Gardner, Adam Legzdins and Tomasz Kusczak are sure to remain next season while he recruits fresh legs.
Coach Gianfranco Zola has not actually made quite the impact that greeted his announcement as Blues boss.
Looking back did the coach try to change too much in such a short space? Zola would need to utilize the forthcoming preseason very well with the team to help them understand his philosophies rather than impose them too quickly.
For now Zola would need to get the result against Derby County and against former coach Gary Rowett. With the calibre of players at the club, Zola should have been more strategic in tweaking things up. Before now the Blues team were more balanced. They sat back when required and hit oppositions on counters but now they try to dominate and keep up the pressure upfront all the time without managing the situation well.
These moves by Zola seem to have affected the team. City need to have concrete plans in place. There is no need for the regular change in managers and always doling outmoney at every given opportunity. The club needs to have a long term mindset, develop the right philosophies and work towards it.
If Birmingham lose to Derby this weekend, the backlash from the fans might force the board to take actions that might have larger consequences so it’s back to the basics. Zola would need to work with the present to get the results while strategically introducing his policies. He has spent so much in the market but the results pale compared to other managers of the club.
Before Christmas the team was not in this bad a shape but things have taken a bad turn that might end in Zola’s dismissal and the gains from the whole process eroded.
Sheffield Wednesday clashed with Birmingham City, defeating them 3-0 in the English Championship.
The loss increases the pressure on Manager Gianfranco Zola as he supervised a seventh loss in 12 games in all competitions.
Going into the game, much was not expected from the visitors as they had lost four of six games away from their base while Sheffield have been decent in their home records. Jordan Rhodes scored the first of the match as early as the ninth minute. Two goals late in the second term of the game from Sam Winnall and Adam Reach sealed the victory for the hosts.
Zola claimed that his men were decent but that they were not hungry enough. He added that they played well but just couldn’t convert their chances.
“We played good football and created chances. But that is not enough. We have to be stronger and more hungry. We controlled the game so, other than the result, I thought it was one of the best performances, after the first few minutes. The bottom line is that we play good football but we don’t score enough,” he said.
City had 58:42 of the ball possession but could only send three shots on target compared to their competitor’s seven. The loss sent them to the 12th spot on the Championship log while Wednesday continue their fight for the playoffs.
oach Carlos Carvalhal said that the score line was heavy to their opponents but added that he liked that the team created many chances.
“We know that was not perfect, but there are a lot of things that I like. Even in the first minute, we could have achieved a goal, and after that we had three or more clear chances…I think we deserved to win this game,” Carvalhal said.
Birmingham City were still searching for their first win under manager Gianfranco Zola after only managing a 1-1 draw with Blackburn Rovers during the weekend.
Birmingham could not have made a better start to the game after taking the lead in the 3rd minute through a penalty fromJutkiewicz. However, they also conceded in the worst possible fashion – just before half-time. Danny Graham came up with the equaliser after Birmingham had a couple of great chances to increase their lead. David Cotterill, especially, had a great opportunity to put the team 2-0 ahead in the 25th minute.
Failure to take the chances proved to be the decisive factor as Birmingham remain winless since the 2-1 victory over Ipswich Town back in December. Zola has now been in charge of eight matches and the honeymoon factor certainly seems to be over at the moment. The former Chelsea star has not had a great time in management. Yet, he had the confidence to take over at Birmingham – his first managerial job since an extended spell with Watford.
He had left Watford in 2013 and went on to manage smaller clubs like Cagliari Calcio and Al-Arabi. Birmingham were hoping to make a push for the play-off places after the appointment of Zola, but the club are already eight points below Sheffield Wednesday, who occupy the final sixth spot.
“We have to be able to convert the volume of good play into goals.Today we had a great chance, we started well. We were on the front foot, we scored and we another another great chance.Then we started making those mistakes, you can’t afford that.I think we are getting there. The pity is I will have to wait another week. That disappoints me.But the players and their determination – and the coaches’, everybody, is getting bigger and it will produce results,” said Zola.
The security was very tight yesterday at St. Andrews as the two teams of the same area namely Birmingham City and Aston Villa were taking on each other after a while and the passionate supporters had to be kept in check for the denial of any unpleasant event.
A helicopter was moving all over the stadium with a recording camera which was capturing the scenes and redirecting it to the screens placed in the control room of Birmingham police where the higher officials were closely watching that.
Apart from getting redirected, the scenes were getting stored as well in a mini chip that had been fitted in the camera so that they could be viewed later if needed.
While there was no violence as such in the stands during the match, the security officials came quickly into action after the match and took more than 10 people into custody.
It remains unclear whether those people were caught in that recording camera making some provocative moves
Meanwhile, a spectator who had gone for the match has accused a security official of getting him down with a forceful shove of his elbow for no reason while he was on his way out of the stadium.
As per that spectator called Rodney, he can’t seem to recall anything provocative that he would have done there. So, he didn’t understand that kind of action from that official.
Rodney, who is an old man, is hurt by that blow and he has had to file a leave application at his workplace as he is not in a condition to work.
His complaint has been taken into account though and an assurance has been given to him by Birmingham Police that the official whom he says has misbehaved with him would not be spared if he is found culprit following an investigation.
Birmingham City went undefeated for 7 league matches which started on August 27 when they overcame Norwich City with a scoreboard of 3-0 and this string continued going until October 14 when Nottingham Forest defeated Birmingham and this victory was particularly important for Nottingham as they were edging closer and closer to the bottom relegation zone.
While Birmingham City were going through a positive streak of either draws or victories for 7 successive matches, it was a completely different story for Nottingham Forest as they were either losing or drawing in that same period of time.
Even the head coach of Birminham City, Gary Rowett admitted that Nottingham City deserved the victory and they truly needed it after having struggled so much in recent times as Rowett said:
“I thought Forest deserved it. I have to say I thought they were better than us tonight. I thought they showed more energy and desire. Maybe a team that hasn’t won for six is determined to put it right and maybe we looked like a team that had only lost one in 11 and felt as though we could turn up and not work as hard to get another result. The first thing and it’s the most important thing, we weren’t anywhere near the standards we have set this season’’
Birmingham International Holdings (BIH) is the parent company of Birmingham City FC and they have been going through some changes with new members being brought in, 8 new members to be exact while 6 directors of BIH have left.
Zhao Wenqing is the new chairman of Birmingham International Holdings and all of these changes at the top spots of the parent company will be creating a new hierarchy for the club. This takeover has been taking place for the past few years as a part of the shares of the English club and of BIH as well were bought by the new owners but it isn’t until recently that the takeover process is expected to be officially completed.
Birmingham City coach Gary Rowett revealed happenings after 18-year old forward Jack Storer received marching orders in the derby loss to Wolves.
Rowett commented generally on the disposition of the young striker after the red card as he would have to serve a three match ban for his actions. He revealed how he meant to handle the player going forward as well.
“He’s a young player. I chastised him a little bit after the game because I felt that was something he needed to learn moving forward. It was no good me saying to him ‘that’s fine Jack, no problem’ and giving him a nice cuddle and saying everything would be alright,” Rowett said.
Storer is a Wast Hills football academy graduate and is a potential star in the Birmingham team. He came on as substitute in the game but ended up receiving a red card for his violent conduct. He reacted to the marching orders by kicking an advertising hoarding, picking up a little injury in the process. Rowett revealed that the first thing he did was to come to his office after the game to apologize, saying he’d prove himself right. Rowett said Storer demonstrated “real desire to do better.”
Rowett admitted that provocation played a part but added that he expected players to remain calm. “We know that things that have gone on that will try and entice you into a yellow card or a red card and that’s when you’ve got to keep your psychological state in check and make sure that you’re really professional.
“We’ve worked quire hard with that in the period that we’ve been out and we’ve tried to help him a little bit to find ways to manage that,” Rowett added. The coach confirmed that Storer was still injured, but added that the focus for the team is to win games for the club.
Birmingham City failed to build on the recent league victory over Leeds United, as the team could only manage a 1-1 draw with Wigan Athletic.
Pressure mounts on manager Gary Rowett as the team has been unable to find a way to get more victories. Birmingham started the campaign with hopes of at least finishing in the play-offs even though there is not a lot of support for the manager from the board in terms of new signings. Birmingham have gone through a lot of financial difficulties in recent times, but Rowett felt confident coming into the game.
After only managing a draw with Wigan,Rowett did not help himself after questioning his own team selection. He claimed that he had a thought about the possibility of making some changes to the team, but resisted the urge after having watched the players perform well in the 2-1 win over Leeds United. Many managers do not tend to change a winning combination, butRowett seems to have been unable to spot the difference between a one-time performance. The manager is expected to now ring the changes in the hope of infuse some fear into the team about the first-team places.
Rowett claimed that he should have also gone in for a different formation.”I toyed with making a few changes, but I felt as though the players who played against Leeds deserved to go again.But I think some of the players ran out of steam. So, maybe I should have possibly made a few more changes in the starting eleven,” said the manager after the 1-1 draw. David Davies came up with the opening goal for Birmingham before Craig Davis secured a late equaliser for the home team. As a result of just taking one point from the opening three games, Birmingham are struggling.
After securing a 4-0 win over Kidderminster in the final friendly game, Birmingham City manager Gary Rowett claimed that he is feeling confident ahead of the new season.
The club failed to even come close to achieving their objective of getting promoted back to the Premier League last season. This time around, the competition is expected to be more intense with clubs like Newcastle United expected to be favourites for the top prize. Aston Villa are also in the mix to get promoted back at the first instance.
Even though the relegation of Villa means that the Midlands derby will renew once again, Birmingham are looking jealous at their arch rivals after having seen them complete the signing of Ross McCormack. The former Fulham striker has been one of the best forwards in the Championship over the last few years. Amidst a lot of fight between clubs like Norwich City, Aston Villa managed to sign him for around £ 12 million.Rowett is under extreme pressure to deliver the results this season. The club has managed to finish only 10th in the last two seasons under the former Burton Albion manager. Even though some would see this as a lack of progression,Rowett will feel pleased since he has been able to achieve this without spending a lot of money.
“You can name six or seven teams in this division who, if they want a deal doing, can massively overpay to get that deal done.We’re not in that position. We’ve almost got to try and underpay and see if we can make it happen. No disrespect to us, but that’s just where we are in comparison to some of the others,” said the Birmingham manager about the club’s inability to compete in the transfer market due to financial constraints.