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 Posted by ESPN Staff
Jan 3, 2011

McLeish desperate to find right forward

Alex McLeish will look to sign a striker who can step straight into Birmingham's battle for Premier League survival.

McLeish brought in Nikola Zigic from Valencia during the summer and the Serbia international is only just coming to terms with the demands of the top flight in this country. But he is aware any signing during the next month has to be ready-made to join the fight to stay up ahead of Tuesday evening's clash at Blackpool.

Robbie Keane, Jay Bothroyd and Ryan Babel have been linked with a move to St Andrews.

McLeish said: "We are working actively, the board and myself, to try and enhance the striking positions. The board are understanding of the situation and there are a few names we have talked about that could enhance the team.

"They are trying to help me to bring those players in. You are not going to bring in players lesser than the ones you've got. You are trying to bring in a bit of quality to make sure it can improve the team.

"We've got to be bringing someone in who can go straight into the team. That is the type of player we are looking for.''

Birmingham have slipped into the bottom three but McLeish does not believe their current standing will put off any potential signings.

He said: "I think if they look at the points between us and five or six teams above us, they know one win can take us right in amongst the middle of the table. I don't think they only look at the league position and don't also look at the bigger picture.

"I think that's what you have to realise. People get paranoid just looking at the current position and thinking we are doomed because it is not quite like that yet.

"We are there and we know the challenge ahead of us. We haven't played badly to be in the bottom three. We just haven't scored enough goals. That is something we have to rectify in the second half of the season.

"We know that. We know our targets and we've got to go for them. We've got to make sure we are still in the Barclays Premier League next season. We've got to do that, prove that to ourselves, that we are capable of being here next season.''

McLeish is adamant there has been no complacency by Birmingham this season after finishing ninth in their first year back in the Premier League.

He said: "There are no guarantees. We've never ever taken it for granted just because we finished high up the table last season. We had to rebuild again, bring different players in and start again almost.

"We are still developing as a club. I'd like to see us getting this season firmly entrenched in the league and we can go from strength to strength from then on.''

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