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Dwight Yorke has conceded that his transfer to Blues had upset a lot of people.


And the unrepentant striker revealed his return to the city where he made his name for nine years at Villa was down to football reasons.

Yorke, who rejected Celtic at the 11th hour on transfer deadline day to move from Blackburn Rovers to Blues for £250,000, knows he has stirred up a hornet's nest of opinion. And it's unforgiving Villa fans who have reacted with the most anger.

"This move is something I'm very excited about and I'm really looking forward to what lies ahead," he said.

"I got on a plane and went to Celtic, I actually ended up in the boardroom to complete my deal, and there was Steve Bruce on the other end of the phone.

"Once Birmingham came in, it was an opportunity to play in the Premiership. On the other side of the coin, I'm sure there's a lot of people out there who won't be particularly happy but it was purely a footballing reason why I joined Birmingham and I'm delighted I made that decision.

"I had nine years at Aston Villa - it was a great time for me, it was a great learning curve and I had some good success there - but this is another chapter.

"Unfortunately for the Villa fans I'm not back joining them, I'm here for Birmingham, it's a great opportunity for me."

Yorke, speaking to Capital Gold radio, said after being frozen out at Ewood Park he was fit and hungry to do well.

And he pointed to the fact that he was prepared to step into a maelstrom of controversy by joining Blues.

"I hope it says a lot. I could have taken an easy route out at Celtic," said Yorke.

"I'm not saying for a minute Celtic's a small club, they're not, but being in the Premiership, coming back to Birmingham, coming back to confront all of the Villa fans, playing for a great club and a manager who I know very well, who wouldn't want to be part of it?

"This was purely a football decision and I felt that if I'd gone to Celtic maybe I'd have woken up the next morning and wondered whether I'd made the right decision."

Yorke added: " I'm 32 now and I've been in the game long enough to know exactly what I needed and this is a challenge that I'm really excited about.

"Whatever the Villa fans might say and whatever people might think, this is my job and I've got to do what's right for me.

"Hopefully this move here will help me sparkle again."