Birmingham City manager Harry Redknapp did not disappoint on the transfer deadline day as he managed to get several deals over the line yet again. The experienced manager has a history of being very busy in the lead up to the transfer window slamming shut, and it was no different this year as he managed to bring in four players throughout the day.
This made Birmingham the busiest club in The Championship in the transfer market but not only did they manage to several players to their squad, but they also added several players of real quality. The only disappointment for Birmingham supporters was that they could not get a deal for Rubin Kazan midfielder Alex Song over the line as he looked set to join on a loan deal. However, he failed to agree to terms with his parent club, and the move subsequently fell through.
We take a look at the reasons why Birmingham ‘won’ Deadline Day in The Championship.
Birmingham added much need quality to the squad
Prior to the last few days, there was a significant amount of concern around St Andrews’ about the lack of transfer activity and that the team was not good enough to compete in the second tier. The Blues have suffered from a number of injury blows already this season, most notably to star striker Che Adams. However, Redknapp was clearly backed by the club’s hierarchy in the latter stages of the window as the club made some very impressive signings.
They started to become more active in the window on Wednesday as they signed Brentford centre-half Harlee Dean for a fee of around £2.2 million. This is an excellent signing as the 26-year-old is an experienced defender at this level and is the sort of player that Birmingham needed to take control of the back four. The Blues also made an audacious bid for Sheffield Wednesday midfielder Barry Bannan which signalled their intent going into Deadline Day.
Redknapp got his first deal completed early on yesterday morning as he snapped up former Blackburn Rovers midfielder Jason Lowe on a free transfer. The 25-year-old is a good signing for the Blues, and he was on trial at Premier League side West Bromwich Albion earlier this summer which highlights his quality. The fact that he can play in numerous different positions will also prove very useful to Redknapp throughout the season when injuries and suspensions come into play.
Birmingham’s defence was strengthened further later on in the day as Brentford right-back Maxime Colin joined the club for an undisclosed fee that is thought to be around £3 million. His addition became highly important following Ryan Shotton’s departure to Championship rivals Middlesbrough. The addition of Everton midfielder Liam Walsh on loan will also give Redknapp another option in midfield.
Best signing of the summer in The Championship?
One deal that shocked many supporters of other clubs in The Championship was Birmingham’s signing of Brentford winger Jota. The 26-year-old had received interest from the Premier League all summer as well as interest from Championship sides Fulham, Middlesbrough and Derby County. However, Redknapp was able to utilise his persuasive powers once again to lure him to St Andrews’.
He joins the club on a four-year deal for a club-record fee of around £6 million. The winger has been one of the standout players in The Championship during his time with Brentford having scored 23 goals in 78 appearances as well as picking up a significant amount of assists. It will certainly be interesting to see whether he can replicate this sort of form with Birmingham.