Chiefs ponder McLeish’s future

McLeish has performed wonders in his three full seasons at

Birmingham in gaining promotion, securing a best top-flight finish

last term – ninth – and winning the Carling Cup. But the drop into

the Championship has cast an inevitable cloud over McLeish and

whether he will remain at St Andrew’s. Talks are expected to take

place between all parties in the next 24 to 48 hours. It will cost

the club around £2million to pay up the remaining two years of

the Scot’s contract, when the purse strings will already have to be

tightened due to the reduction in revenue following relegation.

McLeish has reiterated his desire to stay at Blues unless his

future is taken out of his hands. He said: “I’ve got a good

contract with the club. “It’s tough on us to be relegated but we

don’t lie down and bury our heads in the sand. “We’ve got to get on

with the next challenge. We’ve got to show leadership. “Will I

still be here next year? I’ve got a contract that says that. Until

I’m told differently, that will be the case.” McLeish was on Monday

back at the club’s training ground sorting out the future of

several players. Sebastian Larsson, Lee Bowyer and Martin Jiranek

are all out of contract while Obafemi Martins, Matt Derbyshire,

David Bentley and Alexander Hleb have come to the end of their loan

spells. The likes of Ben Foster, Roger Johnson, Scott Dann, Cameron

Jerome and Nikola Zigic are also likely to be targets for Premier

League clubs.