BCFC: Ren Out

Public statements appear to be like buses – we don’t see anything for ages and then boom two follow each other in a matter of minutes on Monday. Statements from an EFL spokesman and the club on their official website confirmed what we have known for some time – that Blues are embargoed and are at an impasse with respect to sorting it out.

Birmingham City FC

The BBC story containing the original EFL quotes can be read here.

The official Blues statement can be read here.

There are two key word differences between the statements that should give an insight into why there has been a lack of movement with regards to getting this sorted out.

The EFL spokesman told the BBC that:

The EFL has been in regular contact with the club throughout the summer and set out on 13 July our requirements in respect of the basis upon which the club would be able to make additions to Garry Monk’s squad.

The club say in their statement:

We are hopeful that a satisfactory agreement can be reached with the EFL as soon as possible to help ensure our continued competitiveness in the Championship.

The implication is obvious. The League have told us they’re not negotiating further, and the club have reacted by blaming the EFL for the situation they now find themselves in.


So what now?

My understanding of what the  EFL’s “requirements” are is that the club should “generate fresh income”.

What that means is to bring fresh money into the club without trying to do some fancy accountancy trickery – in other words sell players.

Obviously, Blues don’t want to do that but the actions of Ren Xuandong in the past few months has left them between a rock and a hard place.

The signing of Kristian Pedersen will have properly annoyed the EFL.

At that time we were under a “soft embargo” but even that had wage and transfer fee limits. I’ve had confirmation from multiple sources that Pedersen’s deal was well outside of those limits.

The fact it took three weeks from when he had his medical to when the club announced gives away that the club weren’t sure how they could proceed.

I’m guessing here, but I suspect Ren would have been under pressure from Garry Monk to show that his assurances that “everything is fine” were actually truthful and that Ren pushed the deal through along with the release of Robert Tesche in the hope that he could make it happen without the league saying anything.

I’m now 100% sure Pedersen is not registered and it would not surprise me if we loan him out to another club for at least a couple of months as I do not believe we will be able to register him before next Thursday.

Ren will have known that the EFL wanted Blues to generate money since July 13.

However, it appears he has been bluffing both to people like Garry Monk and to his own bosses that it could still be negotiated.

At best that’s naivete. At worst, it’s lying and incompetence.


The big thing to remember in all of this is that the EFL is a member’s association, not a regulatory body. Every club is a member and helps make and decide on rules.

From where I’m sitting Ren has pretty much stuck two fingers in the air all summer at the EFL in the arrogant belief that he can get away with it.

My hope is that his bosses have realised Ren has endangered the relationships with one of the best managers we’ve had for some time; the back room staff who will have known all along how to resolve this problem and with the league themselves.

I’m not often one for calling for someone to be sacked, but Ren has to go – because I can only see his continued employment making matters worse.

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