McLeish still wants Emana
Alex McLeish has confirmed that he maintains an interest in Achille Emana, after missing out on his signing on deadline day.
Last Updated: 02/09/09 6:19pm
Birmingham City boss Alex McLeish has confirmed that he maintains an interest in Achille Emana, after missing out on his signing on deadline day.
After seeing a move for Sporting Gijon's Michel fail to come to fruition, McLeish moved for Emana.
The Cameroonian international midfielder only moved to Spain last summer when Betis paid over £5million to Toulouse for his signature.
McLeish had hoped to persuade Betis - who were relegated from La Liga last term, to let Emana move on loan.
However, things failed to transpire as Betis failed to agree terms.
"It was a tough one to do. It was put to me very late," said McLeish.
"He went to Real Betis for big money, and they want big money for him now. They wanted to sell him.
"We had a stab at getting him on loan because we felt Betis would not want to go through D-Day without getting him off the wages.
"It was an ambitious effort and I thank the board for trying to go for it. We didn't quite do it, however."
McLeish may look at resurrecting the deal in January, although much will depend on City's position in the league.
"Possibly further down the line, you never know," added McLeish when asked whether it was a transfer to consider in the future.
"We will see what develops over the course of this season.
"Hopefully, the lads will continue to show the belief they have in the opening
games, then there's no reason why we can't look to invest in players like
One deal which McLeish did manage to conclude was the signing of Sunderland midfielder Teemu Tainio.
"We know all about him, and I have always admired him," he said.
"Of course, I tried to get him before in the last Premier League transfer window we were in.
"We noticed he wasn't featuring that much for Sunderland, and I know you don't turn into a bad player overnight.
"He's an international, very good with the ball and that's the type of player I want to bring to the club. We're glad to be working with him at last."