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Last Updated: Friday, 14 October 2005, 10:39 GMT 11:39 UK
Birmingham table bid for Scharner
Austria defender Paul Scharner
Defender Scharner is a current Austria international
Birmingham boss Steve Bruce has confirmed he has made a bid for Austrian defender Paul Scharner.

The 25-year-old, who played against England on Saturday, is at Norwegian club Brann Bergen and caught Bruce's eye in a pre-season friendly.

"We have made a bid for Scharner and we are just waiting to see what develops," Bruce told the Birmingham website.

"We have been aware of him for a while and he has the added bonus of being able to play in several positions."

Bruce is keen to find a long-term replacement for 34-year-old Kenny Cunningham, who is out of contract in the summer.

The Blues boss added: "We hope we can find some common ground (with Scharner's club). We have got our own valuation of him but we have got three, four or five other targets."

Meanwhile, Bruce is hoping defensive duo Matthew Upson, 26, and Mario Melchiot, 28, will commit to long-term deals.

"We tried to speak to Matthew in the summer about a new contract," said Bruce.

"We've got him for this year and another two years so there isn't an initial hurry.

"Obviously, with someone like him, you would like to tie him down for the next four or five years if we could and I'll have that conversation again.

"In an ideal world I'd love to tie him - and Mario Melchiot - up on long-term deals because players of their quality don't come around very often."


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