By support

18th Apr, 2017 | 8:25pm

McLeish: This is what will happen to Redknapp if Birmingham beat Aston Villa on Sunday

By Amir Mir

Alex McLeish believes if newly appointed Birmingham boss Harry Redknapp can beat Aston Villa on Sunday then fans will want him tied down to a long-term contract.

Gianfranco Zola resigned from his post at St Andrew’s after the 2-0 defeat against Burton which left them close to the drop zone.

Just hours after handing in his resignation, Birmingham then began planning for life without the Italian by appointing Redknapp on Tuesday for the final three matches of the season.

Many were surprised that the experienced manager has taken the role at the struggling Championship club.

His first task will be a tough away trip to Villa Park at the weekend and former Rangers manager, McLeish gave his thoughts on the appointment.

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“I am sure that he will keep them up,” McLeish told BBC Sport. “He will keep it real and stir them up for the last three games.

“He couldn’t get a tougher one to choose [when talking about the Villa game]. So it is another big game this weekend coming up and if Harry can win that one, the Birmingham fans will be looking to get him tied down immediately.”

McLeish will be very familiar with the second city derby as the Scotsman famously managed both clubs during his time in the Premier League.

During the summer of 2011, after the Blues were relegated from the top flight, he made a controversial switch across the city as he barely survived a season at Villa before being sacked.

In December, Birmingham surprised many by sacking Gary Rowett from his post despite the highly-rated Englishman having his side sitting just outside of the play-off places.

Since Zola arrived, the Blues have won only two matches in 24 league games as they could be in the relegation zone by the time they take on their bitter rivals.

Three points separate 22nd-placed Blackburn and Birmingham, who are sitting two places above the Lancashire club.

In other Aston Villa news, Simon Jordan has made this claim ahead of the Birmingham clash on Sunday.

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