AT LAST, ZIGIC IS WOR­THY OF THAT PRICE TAG

The Football League Paper - - PROFILE ON -

SINCE sign­ing for Birm­ing­ham in 2010, Nikola Zigic’s £65,000-aweek wages mean he has pock­eted a monster £13.5m.

So given that the cost of rel­e­ga­tion from the Cham­pi­onship is an es­ti­mated £15m, the Ser­bian just about broke even last weekend.

Aw­ful all day, Zigic scored one and made an­other as the Blues scram­bled a last­minute 2-2 draw at Bolton to send Don­caster down in their stead.

Now bless­edly out of con­tract, it was al­most cer­tainly his fi­nal act in a Birm­ing­ham shirt, yet even that is un­likely to en­sure he is re­mem­bered fondly.

For the last three years, Zigic’s wages have crip­pled the club, burn­ing re­sources like a blaz­ing oil well. Though the ab­sence of owner Carson Ye­ung is the root cause of Birm­ing­ham’s fi­nan­cial woes, their in­abil­ity to sign play­ers is a di­rect re­sult of Zigic hog­ging the play­ing budget.

But Lee Clark was spot on in his de­fence of the 6ft 7ins striker. “It’s not his fault,” said the Blues boss. “It’s a grab your pen mo­ment when that kind of con­tract is put in front of you. You just sign it.”

In ret­ro­spect, there’s no way Zigic was worth the money. He prob­a­bly knew it him­self. But if some­body was of­fer­ing me a £13m con­tract, there’s no way I’d be ug­ing them to think twice.

So yes, Zigic took Birm­ing­ham for a ride. But be­fore any­one casts judge­ment, ask if you’d have done the same. If the an­swer isn’t yes, you’re a bet­ter man than me. GREAT to see David Nu­gent of­fered a new by pro­moted deal

Le­ices­ter. Af­ter a sin­gle cap for ill-fat­ed­spell Eng­land and an

with Portsmouth, the was writ­ten 29-year-old

off as ‘Cham­pi­onship un­able to cut it at the

striker’, high­est level. It’s why, even af­ter 20 cam­paign, goals and an ever-present

most ex­pected him to sum­mer. be jet­ti­soned this

But Nu­gent has earned time. this last crack at the

It isn’t his fault he was big isn’t his called up for

fault that Harry Eng­land. It confi-denceby Red­knapp ru­ined his

putting him up for sale a £6m move just weeks af­ter

from Pre­ston, nor that ma­rooned in he was

the re­serves with­out a chance. He’s bei n g i ven

had wretched luck. Yet as both Grant Holt Lam­bert and Rickie

have proved, old hands the top flight take

in their stride. It would be great if ‘Nuge’

fol­lowed suit.

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