BCFC: Positive Additions

The lack of new CEO at Birmingham City since the resignation of Ren Xuandong in May has left some fans concerned to the direction of the club. Despite being an unpopular figure with many, Ren was a visible face of the board and his departure has meant that for some it’s much harder to understand what is going on. However, I believe it’s not Ren’s replacement people should be looking at.

St Andrew's taken 26 December 2018

I get why people are anxious that a new CEO should be appointed as soon as possible. With the remainder of the board being somewhat more low key, it’s harder to understand the direction the club will take in the next month or two, especially as we’re now in the transfer season.

However, as important as the CEO role is, I think there is evidence that things are more positive without a replacement for Ren being in place.

One page I monitor for information about the club is the BCFC vacancies page. This isn’t because I want a job at the club (the exact opposite being true), but more to understand the staff the club want to bring in.

Of late, there have been a couple of adverts that have caught my eye.

First of all, Blues are looking for three scouts to cover England and Scotland in permanent full time roles.

If you cast your mind back to the ill-fated interview Ren gave Richard Wilford of Radio WM in February, Ren spoke of “out-sourcing” scouting to companies in France and Spain.

Now it might be the case that Blues are still using those companies, but for me the potential for appointment of new scouts is a very positive move. I’m hopeful that Blues are adding to their recruitment staff to help improve the process there, which in turn should help to improve the quality and “hit-rate” of good players we have coming in.

The other advert that caught my eye was for a Financial Controller.

Again, I believe that this is a role that is in addition to current staff rather than a replacement. Back in 2018 before the infamous summer of the embargo and the Pedersen signing, the Blues senior management team included a financial director (Roger Lloyd) and a Financial Controller (Gary Moore).

Since those people left I only know of replacements for Roger Lloyd, and I’ve noted in articles in the past of how Blues have picked up CCJs for small amounts that could potentially have been avoided.

My hope is that by appointing a Financial Controller, the board have recognised that the club needs more help in the finance department and that the errors of the past need to be fixed to ensure the club has a firmer footing going forward.

While I accept it’s possible Blues would have looked to have made these hires even if Ren had not departed, I do think there is some link between the positive changes happening and Ren leaving the club.

I’m hopeful that even if the club decide not to appoint a new CEO, that there are sufficient changes from within that will at least make the day-to-day behind the scenes stuff much better than it was before.