The club have officially confirmed that Colombian international striker Hugo Rodallega has been granted a UK work permit and are now in a position to complete the transfer of the 23-year-old from the Mexican club, Necaxa, subject to a medical. Steve Bruce was among a club delegation to attend a Home Office hearing in Manchester yesterday and he said: "This is great news. The transfer is not finalised yet and the player will not be unveiled until it is, but this was the major stumbling block.
"We are never comfortable as a club talking about transfers before they are finalised, because so much can potentially happen to delay a move. However, we have made an exception in this case because the news is in the public domain. Hugo has yet to undergo a medical but we are very optimistic about this going through, hopefully later this week."
Rodallega came to the attention of the club after scoring 25 goals in 52 games for Necaxa, and six goals in 21 games for Colombia.
Blues reopen talks with Rangers' Boyd
Alex McLeish said talks have taken place between Birmingham and Kris Boyd which could see the striker's move from Rangers revived. The Championship high-flyers agreed a fee with the Glasgow outfit last week, believed to be about £3.75m, but talks over personal terms stalled due to both parties being some way apart. McLeish later admitted he believed the deal was "dead" but refused to rule it out completely and has now revealed Blues have again spoken to Boyd and his agent, Mark Donaghy, in an attempt to secure the 25-year-old's services.
Sbragia ready to recall McShane if required
The manager Ricky Sbragia will consider recalling Paul McShane from his loan at Hull City if he fails to strengthen his defence during the current transfer window. Sbragia is eager to bring in new faces, with McShane – on a season-long loan with Hull – an option should all else fail. "It's no secret that I need defenders, but that doesn't necessarily mean having to buy anyone," Sbragia said. "George McCartney [ankle] has a chance of coming back in two weeks' time, and we have Paul McShane on loan, so there might be a thought of bringing him in."
Megson drops out of bidding for Barton
The manager Gary Megson claims he has ended his interest in Joey Barton. The club have had a £2m bid rejected for the Newcastle midfielder, who is currently sidelined with a knee ligament injury. Megson said: "We move on. Joey is a good player and a former England international. But he has certainly had his problems. There is an amount we would go to and that's it."
Surplus strikers leave The Hawthorns
The club has allowed fringe strikers Sherjill MacDonald and Bartosz Slusarski to leave The Hawthorns. MacDonald is set to join Belgian side Roeselare, while Slusarski has had his contract terminated by mutual consent and returned to his native Poland. MacDonald has made six substitute appearances this season but has fallen in the pecking order with the arrival of Jay Simpson.
Rumour mill: Tales from the web
West Bromwich Albion are tracking the progress of the Greek international Angelos Charisteas as the striker remains unsettled with Bundesliga Zwei outfit Nürnberg. ( Sky Sports)
Middlesbrough have sentscouts to look at Sporting Lisbon and Montenegro international midfielder Simon Vukcevic.( Setanta Sports)
Barcelona are set to rival Manchester United for the signature of the Lyons youngster Karim Benzema, preparing a club record bid of €65m (£58.6m). ( Aujourd'hui Sport)
Ipswich Town are lining upa £1m move for Argentine midfielder Luciano Civelli, who recently snubbed an offer from Greek giants AEK Athens. ( Setanta Sports)
Everton and Fulham are tracking the progress of the £2m rated-wingerTrond Olsen of Norwegian outfit Bodo Glimt. ( Daily Mail online)