News Live Scores

Zola explains Arthur's imminent Birmingham City departure

20:01 GMT+3 25/03/2017
Koby Arthur
The Blues manager says the Ghanaian needs to leave in order to get more playing time

Birmingham City manager Gianfranco Zola believes the club made the right choice in deciding against offering Ghanaian youngster Koby Arthur a new contract.

The Kumasi-born has struggled for first team opportunities since joining the Championship side in 2013.

Spotted playing non-league football in Northamptonshire in 2012, Arthur initially signed a two-year professional deal, before agreeing to a two-year extension in 2015.

“He is one of those players who has been doing better but we believe that it is going to be difficult to be in our team,” Zola said, as reported by the club's official website.

“We prefer that he goes and finds a better place where he can play.

“Sometimes it happens even with good players, [Omar] Bogle, he was here he was released and then he went to a lower league, he has done very well then he came back to the same league.

“We think that it is better for the players to be given the possibility to find a better environment where they can have a little bit more space.

“We believe that he won't have the space necessary to improve [here] as simple as that.”

Arthur made his Birmingham debut as a 17-year-old in a Championship defeat to Wolves in 2013, and has 16 appearances in all competitions to his name.

His limited first team opportunities have seen him moving out on loan to Lincoln City and Cheltenham Town.

The 21-year-old is one of three players expected out of St Andrew's at the end of the season, the others being Noe Baba and Josh Tibbetts.