BIrmingham City will take a hostile stance to any formal approach by West Bromwich Albion for manager Chris Hughton.
Hughton is the leading contender for The Hawthorns job after Roy Hodgson took up the reigns of the England team.
But Blues, who suffered Alex McLeish’s surprise defection to Aston Villa 11 months ago, will not allow their neighbours to simply swat them aside for Hughton’s services.
Sources in Hong Kong say Albion’s interest is annoying Carson Yeung and Peter Pannu.
“There has been no contact, as yet,” an insider close to the board stated.
“The club are continuing to work with Chris Hughton in planning for next season and any approach would not be welcome.”
Hughton signed a 12-month rolling contract when he took over from McLeish.
It is unclear whether there is a compensation clause, either way, as part of the agreement. But if Albion do get serious they will have to pay up, probably a figure in the region of £750,000-£1million.