Birmingham City: Gianni Paladini 'still interested' in Blues

Gianni Paladini

Prospective Birmingham City owner Gianni Paladini claims he is 'still interested' in the up-for-sale Championship club, despite reports that his Italian consortium have pulled out.

Negotiations between Paladini's consortium and Blues' parent company, Birmingham International Holdings Ltd, were understood to have broken down.

But Paladini told BBC Midlands Today: "I'm still interested.

"I've not spoken to anyone at the club but we're keeping our options open."

Blues have also twice been approached by a sports management company representing another consortium interested in purchasing the club, Birmingham International Holdings Limited (BIHL).

But, although he has had no recent contact with acting Blues chairman Peter Pannu, Paladini insists that he remains an interested party.

"I don't want to get into a slanging match with Peter Pannu," added Solihull-based Paladini. "But we are still interested.

"I've just been trying to stay quiet since the transfer deadline passed at the end of January."

Blues have failed to publish their financial figures for the past two years, while major shareholder Carson Yeung is awaiting trial in Hong Kong having been charged with money laundering.

There have been reports that Blues are close to going into administration, and they revealed last month that they were open to offers for any of their first-team players.

But young England international keeper Jack Butland's £3.5m sale to Stoke City has eased Blues' short-term financial situation.

Former QPR chairman Paladini first revealed his interest in Blues five months ago. And he is understood to have lodged a £30m offer in November.

Meanwhile, the club have extended the loan deal of West Ham winger Rob Hall by a month.

Hall, 19, has made 12 appearances since joining on loan in November and will now stay at St. Andrew's until 16 March.