Birmingham City have had a very productive summer so far, with Lee Bowyer making several additions to strengthen his squad.
Fans will head into the new season optimistic that the former player is the man to lead a positive era at Blues, although they will recognise that more new signings are required.
One man who has been linked with a switch to St. Andrew’s is keeper Marcus Bettinelli. The 29-year-old is available on a free after leaving Fulham earlier this month and Sun reporter Alan Nixon has claimed that the stopper is in talks with Birmingham.
And, here we weigh up whether Bettinelli would be a worthwhile addition for Blues…
Is it a good potential move?
Yes, and certainly from Birmingham’s perspective because they need a new keeper.
Andres Prieto has left the club, meaning there is a lack of senior cover behind Neil Etheridge. Plus, the number one is currently battling the effects of Covid-19, so he is still some time away from returning.
Therefore, a keeper is required and Bettinelli would be a fantastic signing. The only issue is that the former England U21 international may not want to be second choice, which could be the case when Etheridge is available.
Can you name the Birmingham City player who has been carded the most in each of the last 16 seasons?
Would he start?
As touched upon, it would be a difficult one.
When Etheridge isn’t available, there’s no doubt that Bettinelli would start, but it’s not as clear-cut when the former Cardiff man returns. In fact, going on Bettinelli’s performances for Middlesbrough last season, you’d say he’d be behind Etheridge.
Either way, both have proven themselves to be very good options at this level, so Bowyer would have a big decision to make.
What does he offer?
If the deal does happen, Birmingham would be getting a capable Championship keeper.
Bettinelli has won promotion from this level with Fulham in the past and he is a good shot-stopper and a decent all-round keeper. Having said that, he did make errors whilst with Boro but overall Blues would be getting someone who is entering his peak years, has experience and would be ready to make an instant impact.