Birmingham City should soon be looking towards next season after positive results under new manager Lee Bowyer.
The Blues’ position in the Championship was under threat towards the end of Aitor Karanka’s time in charge, with the Spaniard having the club in a relegation battle once again.
In what now seems like it was a masterstroke, the Blues hierarchy decided to replace Karanka with Bowyer, who even without fans being at matches has managed to galvanise the team and in his first six games in charge he’s led them to four wins.
Just a few more points with four matches to play will secure another season in the second tier and then the building work can begin to try and make sure that it’s a promotion challenge the club go on next season instead.
There are a few transfer scenarios that Blues fans won’t want to pan out over the course of the summer – let’s look at two that may occur that the club can’t afford to happen.
Interest in Kristian Pedersen
Birmingham have a number of players with expiring contracts in the summer of 2022, so at the end of the current campaign the club will need to make a decision on the deals that are going to try and be extended or if players will be cashed in on.
Pedersen arrived at St Andrew’s in 2018 for £2.2 million and he’s been a regular for the last three years, whether that be at left-back or now as a left-sided centre-back in Bowyer’s three centre-half system.
The Dane is one of those who has just a year left on his contract though, and there’s every chance that Premier League clubs and perhaps teams in Germany where he used to play may be interested.
Watford reportedly wanted him in January 2020 when they were still in the Premier League and a similar transfer hunt could happen with Birmingham not exactly in a strong position unless they can offer him a good contract.
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Not bringing in a creative midfielder
This season Birmingham’s central midfield options haven’t exactly been the most creative, with their highest scorer from that position being Gary Gardner and Jon Toral, who have both scored just twice.
The same goes for assists with Toral notching two – Alen Halilovic’s mid-season arrival was expected to inject some more creativity into the side but he’s been in and out of the team whilst battling injuries as well.
It’s very important this summer for the Blues to snap up an attacking threat who can play in the ‘number 10’ role – most of the top Championship teams have one and whilst they have wingers like Jeremie Bela and Ivan Sanchez who can make things happen on their day, a central player who can provide the cutting edge is more important right now and a failure to bring on in will be unforgivable.