Blues and Stoke in for Andy Carroll

Premier League rivals Birmingham and Stoke are poised to battle it out for Newcastle striker Andy Carroll.

Premier League rivals Birmingham and Stoke are poised to battle it out for Newcastle striker Andy Carroll.

Blues boss Alex McLeish is eager to further strengthen his attack having already sealed the signing of giant Serb Nikola Zigic from Valencia last week, while the Potters are on the lookout for new blood up front with James Beattie and Dave Kitson expected to leave.

England under-21 star Carroll, who would fetch around £3.5million, would fit the bill after playing an integral part in the Magpies' instant promotion back to the Premier League, scoring 19 goals.

But off the field the 21-year-old endured a controversial season on Tyneside after being involved in a bust-up with team-mate Steven Taylor, also appearing in court earlier this week to deny a nightclub assault.

McLeish has been one of the busiest Premier League managers in the summer transfer window to date, having also signed goalkeeper Ben Foster for £6million from Manchester United and Spanish midfielder Enric Valles on a free.

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