Football

Gijon: Michel's Birmingham-bound

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Sporting Gijon on Thursday night announced the departure of midfielder Michel to Birmingham.

Michel will undertake a medical before completing his move to St Andrew's, for a fee reported to be around £3million.

His Spanish club stated on their website that the deal had been agreed and that Michel will say his goodbyes to team-mates and Sporting staff on Friday before departing for England.

Michel, 24, has been a regular in the Sporting first team since 2005 and Birmingham have had a long-held interest in him.

Speaking before Sporting announced the deal, Birmingham manager Alex McLeish said: "We've watched Michel for over a year and a bit now and we need to try and get this one over the line, but it looks likely.

"I think Gijon also hit a stumbling block with getting in a replacement. You can understand their coach's situation when he has to get a replacement, because Michel has been his captain this season and he's rightly trying to cover himself.

"It doesn't look likely that anything will be completed before Manchester United (on Saturday) because the registration deadline is noon on Friday."

Given Michel is expected to be in Spain on Friday morning, it remains the case that Michel is unlikely to face United.

Birmingham have been linked with a host of players following an injection of transfer funds from new owner Carson Yeung.

McLeish has refused to "confirm or deny" whether the club have made an £11million bid for Sunderland striker Kenwyne Jones. But he has cooled his interest in Celtic midfielder Aiden McGeady and Liverpool striker Ryan Babel after being told the duo are not for sale.

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Topics:
Sunderland
Ryan Babel
Football
Kenwyne Jones
Premier League
Alex
Manchester United
Birmingham
Liverpool

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