Birmingham transfer targets – Close but no cigar!

Birmingham boss Alex McLeish has insisted the Blues was a desirable destination for soccer’s stars.

Birmingham boss Alex McLeish has insisted the Blues was a desirable destination for soccer’s stars.

Kenwyne Jones, Ryan Babel and Roman Pavlyuchenko all indicated that they would be happy to move to St Andrew’s.

“It wasn’t that players didn’t want to come here, no,” McLeish told the Birmingham Mail.

“We’ve spoken to what you would term top players for big transfer fees, big money, and it wasn’t an issue for them.

“We were not going to get the Lionel Messis, those kind of guys, the ‘A’ list, the super ‘A’ list I suppose, the Galactico list. That just wasn’t going to happen.

“But then you look at another grade of player below and they would have come to us.

“Unfortunately, the cards wouldn’t fall as we would have liked. For one reason or another we couldn’t get the deals we wanted over the line.

“But these kind of players did look at Birmingham City in a positive light and they were aware of what we are trying to do here.”

Wage demands put a spanner in the works for one of Blues’ first raids, for Sunderland’s Jones.

And Blues found that there was resistance from Liverpool and Spurs over, respectively, letting Babel and Pavlyuchenko move on.

Neither manager wanted the players to come back to haunt them had they stayed in England.