Birmingham close to completing Gardner switch
Birmingham are close to completing a deal for Aston Villa midfielder Craig Gardner, according to Blues vice-chairman Peter Pannu.
The two clubs are understood to be on the verge of agreeing a £3.5 million fee for the England Under-21 international.
Villa rejected an initial bid for Gardner and any add-ons relating to the deal have still to be thrashed out.
But Pannu is optimistic Gardner will follow defender Liam Ridgewell in moving directly from Villa to Blues.
Pannu said: "Our offer for Craig Gardner is still on the table and we are pretty close to a deal."
Gardner has come through the academy ranks at Villa but recognises the need to play first-team football at this stage of his career.
He has slipped further down the Villa pecking order this season after the arrival of Fabian Delph from Leeds and also has James Milner, Stewart Downing, Ashley Young, Nigel Reo-Coker, Steve Sidwell and Stiliyan Petrov ahead of him.
Gardner could become Blues boss Alex McLeish's second January signing after Sporting Gijon playmaker Michel.
He also wants to sign a striker with Liverpool's Ryan Babel still on his radar although attempts to sign Sunderland's Kenwyne Jones have floundered.
Blues striker Marcus Bent has returned to the club after a two-and-a-half-month loan spell at Middlesbrough.
Bent will now provide back-up for Cameron Jerome, Christian Benitez and veteran Kevin Phillips.
Latest in Sport
Arsenal transfer latest: Arsene Wenger set to sign...no one on transfer deadline day as manager heads to Rome to referee charity match
Manchester United transfer news: Louis van Gaal offloads fringe players as he looks to the long term
Radamel Falcao transfer latest: Manchester United, Arsenal and Manchester City linked with blockbuster move
Tottenham to offer Andros Townsend to Southampton in £14m deadline day bid for Jay Rodriguez
Tottenham vs Liverpool player ratings: Who was the star man? Raheem Sterling? Alberto Moreno? Or new-boy Mario Balotelli?
- 1 Half of young women unable to ‘locate vagina’ and 65% find it difficult to say the word
- 2 Perez Hilton apologises for Jennifer Lawrence naked photo leak
- 3 A teacher speaks out: 'I'm effectively being forced out of a career that I wanted to love'
- 4 Mexican woman becomes world’s 'oldest person' at 127
- 5 Jennifer Lawrence 'naked sex video' will be leaked threatens 4Chan celebrity photo hacker
Rotherham child sex abuse scandal: Labour Home Office to be probed over what Tony Blair's government knew - and when
What do immigrants really think of Britain? Polish immigrant's Reddit post goes viral
Ashya King: Parents of five-year-old boy refused permission to visit him in hospital and denied bail at Spanish court
With Douglas Carswell joining Ukip, my party has taken another giant step forward
When elitism grips the top of British society to this extent, there is only one answer: abolish private schools
Ukip Douglas Carswell defection: Tory MP jumps ship to join Nigel Farage