Madrid ready to pounce on City winger

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Birmingham City midfielder Sebastian Larsson is attracting interest from Athletico Madrid as he mulls over a new deal at St. Andrews.

The Danish international is out of contract in the summer, and despite playing a leading role in The Blues' Carling Cup win, is unlikely to sign a new deal.

A new contract hinges on whether Birmingham stay in the Barclays Premier League and what role manager Alex McLeish has in store for Larsson with David Bentley's future at the club as yet unknown.

The 25-year-old was tipped to move to Newcastle United in the January transfer window but he stayed on to appear for McLeish's side at Wembley against Arsenal.


Alan Pardew will wait to resolve the future of Joey Barton before deciding whether to make a second bid for Larsson, but with Spanish side Madrid looming, The Magpies are likely to face competition.

With the La Liga side in the race to qualify for the Europa League and set to retain the services of Sergio Aguero, a move abroad could guarantee Larsson not only European football, like at Birmingham, but also a competitive challenge in one of Europe's most exciting divisions, something The Blues, with a stiff relegation battle on their hands, can't be sure of.

The next two months could be crucial to Birmingham's future, after the club were taken over by Carson Yeung, relegation to the Npower Championship would not be the ideal way to end their first season, and retaining their Premier League status will be vital to keeping their prized assets.

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Sebastian Larsson

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