Birmingham and Stoke to battle for Newcastle's Andy Carroll

Battle: Stoke and Birmingham are to fight it out for Andy Carroll

Battle: Stoke and Birmingham are to fight it out for Andy Carroll

Birmingham City and Stoke City are going head-to-head in a battle for Newcastle United’s Andy Carroll.

Sportsmail revealed Stoke's interest earlier this year and Alex McLeish is also keen to prise the striker away from his home-town club after a controversial first full season on Tyneside.

Stoke have told Celtic to up their opening bid of £1.5m for winger Liam Lawrence by £500,000.

Manager Tony Pulis wants £2m for the 28-year-old Ireland star. Cardiff, meanwhile, are battling it out with Reading for wantaway Stoke defender Andy Griffin.

The right back, 31, spent time on loan with Reading last season and already has an offer to return.

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