Leaders of Birmingham City Council are expected to give their formal backing to a super-casino at the NEC on Monday, effectively putting paid to a rival scheme at the Blues.
The cabinet will decide to join Solihull Council in promoting the National Exhibition Centre as the best location in Britain for an American-style regional casino with unlimited cash prizes.
The decision means Birmingham will not itself be a contender in the race to acquire a super-casino licence, relying instead on a joint bid with Solihull.
By not submitting a request to the Casino Advisory Panel, the cabinet will make it impossible for plans for a super-casino at a new Birmingham City Football Club stadium to progress any further - throwing into doubt a scheme for the Blues' #340 million sports village.
An analysis of the two rival projects carried out for the council by consultants KPMG concluded that backers of both schemes had significantly exaggerated the number of jobs and income generation that would be created by a super-casino.
However, it is understood that the KPMG report comes down marginally in favour of the NEC as the proposal most likely to meet Government criteria for a super-casino.
The NEC Group has stated that its casino plan, in association with MGM, would create 7,000 jobs and produce revenue of #350 million over ten years for the city council.
Birmingham City FC has indicated that a sports village could eventually create 20,000 jobs while a casino, to be run by Las Vegas Sands International, would contribute up to #5 million a year to the council.
The near certainty that the council will swing decisively behind the NEC angered Karren Brady, the Blues' managing director, who said the scheme would never win Government approval because it could not deliver urban regeneration.
Describing the NEC casino as a "shed in the middle of nowhere", Ms Brady accused the city of making a serious mistake.
Councillors were influenced by the lure of #350 million but the money would not materialise. "It is a cheque written on the bank of never-never. It is not real money," she said.
She urged the cabinet to reconsider and move forward with both casino schemes, leaving Ministers to judge which was the best.
"Birmingham will have nothing to fall back on if it supports the NEC in Solihull. What happens if the NEC falls at the first hurdle?," she added.
Monday's meeting will be a difficult occasion for Ken Hardeman, the cabinet member for regeneration, who has argued passionately in favour of the Blues casino scheme.
Coun Hardeman (Con Brandwood) failed to convince his colleagues to delay nominating a site, even though the Department for Culture, Media and Sport has said it is not yet ready to consider specific casino bids.
The DCMS website says the Casino Advisory Panel's role is to recommend local authority areas suitable for a super-casino, not specific sites within the areas.
Formal backing for the NEC bid will bring to an end an unprecedented campaign by Birmingham business organisations, including the Chamber of Commerce, Birmingham Forward and the Institute of Directors, who have all urged the council to join with Solihull.