David Gold has revealed Alex McLeish has a budget of around £5 million to spend in the transfer window, but has assured his manager he and his fellow owners will dip into their own pockets if the right player becomes available.

The Birmingham City chairman claimed that McLeish's predecessor, Steve Bruce, emptied the entire kitty during his summer activity which saw £13.6 million spent on five players.

Without the money paid out for Olivier Kapo, Fabrice Muamba, Garry O'Connor, Liam Ridgewell and Franck Queudrue, McLeish must now generate his own funds most likely through the sale of several fringe players such as Martin Taylor and Neil Danns, the latter rumoured to have been the subject of a bid from Crystal Palace.

McLeish also has at his disposal the surplus generated by his own appointment. While Birmingham received £3 million from Wigan Athletic for Bruce, they were obliged to pay less than £1 million to the Scottish Football Association.

But even with that and assuming Taylor and Danns can be moved out quickly enough for the proceeds to be reinvested within the same month, McLeish knows he will have to be creative in bringing in the handful of new recruits he needs for the rest of the campaign.

A central defender, another striker and a dominant midfielder are absolute necessities and the former Scotland manager might even be on the lookout for a goalkeeper a tall order for just £5 million.

With that in mind then, Gold has hinted he and co-owner David Sullivan will use their own vast fortunes to back McLeish in the way they did Bruce.

"We have always said the money generated by the football club can be spent by the football club," Gold said.

"If you combine whatever we receive for players like Martin Taylor and Neil Danns with the balance from changing managers, that's around £5 million. "Anything above that would come from the owners. That has happened over the years but it is a back stop. Alex is a very measured guy and is not going to be held to ransom he sees the club's money as his money.

"Steve Bruce spent all the money in summer and promotion cost us a fortune in bonuses. Where we may have paid a player £2 million, there could have been a £500,000 bonus."

In recent seasons, the current board have erred on the side of prudence. In the last four years, they are less than £5 million in deficit, having spent £35.5 million since the summer of 2004 and recouped just under £31 million in the same period.

Relegation was a big factor in the number of players arriving and leaving St Andrew's and Birmingham are determined they will not go through the same sort of upheaval at the end of the current season.

For that reason, McLeish will be able to plead a case to the owners if a player he particularly wants moves into focus.

"If there is somebody special you think is available and you would really like to come to Birmingham City and the club has run out of funds, we would look at it on a case-by-case basis," Gold promised.

"Alex has not said to us he has found a player he really wants yet, but you only have to look at our record over the last 15 years and the way in which we support our managers. The important thing is retaining our Premier League status."

The club have already generated some money following the sale to Leeds United of Neil Kilkenny.

The 22-year-old was sold for a fee of £150,000 and signed a three-and-a-half year deal at Elland Road.

The former Arsenal trainee initially signed on loan last Friday to enable him to play in the third-round FA Cup win over Northampton Town but yesterday made that move permanent.

Kilkenny spent the first half of this season on loan at Oldham Athletic where he made 25 appearances having struggled ever since he arrived at St Andrew's, to convince former manager Steve Bruce of his worth.