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By ESPN Staff

Yeung pledges £40 million transfer kitty for Brum

New Birmingham owner Carson Yeung has pledged to spend up to £40 million on new players during the January transfer window.

Yeung made the announcement as he was officially unveiled as the new owner at St Andrew's after completing his £81.5 million takeover of the club.

And the Hong Kong businessman also gave his support to Blues' manager Alex McLeish and said he would work closely with him to make City "as big as possible''.

Yeung bought a 29.9% stake in Birmingham two years ago, which made him the club's largest individual shareholder. But it has taken him until now to take complete charge after the end of the 16-year David Sullivan and David Gold era .

Yeung said: "I'm happy to be here. It has taken a long time to buy the club - but finally I have got it. There were problems with each other regarding communication. When I took out the original 29.9% stake, I did not say I would then buy the club 100%.

"It just depended on the right time - and now I am so happy it has all gone through.''

McLeish has already spelled out his desire to bring in new players during January to help City in their fight against relegation, and Yeung is to give him substantial backing.

Asked what finances will be available to the manager, Yeung said: "My first plan is to support the club for about £20-£40 million for players and wages in January.''

Yeung's right-hand man Sammy Yu added: "We will all be working together. It is too early at the moment to say which players we will be looking at - but we will work on a short-list and we will go for it.''

McLeish has been dogged by many injury problems with his squad since taking Birmingham back into the Premier League at the first attempt.

Yeung said: "I will be supporting the manager. We have an excellent management team. Our aim is to work hard to secure our position in the Premier League, not only for this year but for many years to come.

"Birmingham can become as big as possible. We are competitors for Aston Villa. In the short term I just care about January. But in the future there will be more money, and longer term we believe there is a major opportunity to build Birmingham's fan base in China and to generate new sources of revenue for the club.

"But for this to happen, our first priority must be to establish Birmingham as a Premier League club.''

Yeung intends to take an active role with Birmingham but will have the support of chairman Vico Hui, joint vice-chairman Peter Pannu and Yu - plus chief executive Michael Dunford, who has similar experience with Derby and Everton.

Yeung promised: "I will be here three or four times a month and I will try and see every home game.''


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