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 Posted by ESPN Staff
May 5, 2006

Relegated Birmingham in no rush to sell star men

Co-owner David Sullivan insists Birmingham may only have to sell one star player after being relegated from the Barclays Premiership.

Striker Emile Heskey and winger Jermaine Pennant, who has again claimed he 'will not jump ship', are City's most marketable assets given defender Matthew Upson's lengthy lay-off with a ruptured Achilles.

Sullivan told the Birmingham Mail: 'It could be that only one goes. We certainly don't anticipate having to sell several players.

'That said, if some players don't want to be here, what's the point of having them? But we would be talking about serious money. We wouldn't just let a club nick anyone.'

Several players, however, are out of contract while Nicky Butt and Jiri Jarosik are expected to return to Newcastle and Chelsea respectively after their loan deals run out after Sunday's game at Bolton.

Sullivan is adamant he wants Steve Bruce to remain as manager with the pair due to meet to discuss the transfer budget for 2006-07.

But Bruce is worried over the level of funds which will be made available to revamp a squad he admits needs a drastic overhaul.

Sullivan said: 'I hope Steve stays, genuinely I do. He's a lovely person, a very good manager capable of carrying us to promotion.

'We have to bring in a centre-half, we have to bring in a striker and there will be a few new faces.

'While we are all very disappointed at relegation, maybe a season winning games might get everybody excited again and bring back the atmosphere at the ground.

'All is not lost. 'There could be fun times at St Andrew's, we could be scoring a lot more goals, we could be playing exciting football.'

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