Birmingham boss Steve Bruce has confirmed that Stephen Clemence still has a big future at St Andrew's amid rumours linking him with Championship rivals Crystal Palace and Southampton.
The former Tottenham Hotspur midfielder has been struggling with a niggling heel injury for most of this season and has barely featured in the first team.
Clemence's lack of action led to reports linking him with a move out of he club, but Bruce wants him to stay put and help in their push for an immediate return to the Premiership.
He told the Birmingham Mail: "He's had a problem with his Achilles tendon.
"It seems to the outsider that I've just shunned Stephen Clemence, which isn't the case. I would never shut the door on him
"He could be the one who turns out instrumental for us. He has proven that he can do a fantastic job for us in the Premiership, I have no doubts he can in the Championship.
"It's just this nagging problem. He's now had three injections into it, and he's a little bit more comfortable this week than he has for the last three or four.
"But always with Clem he needs to play, he needs games to get himself into his best shape and for him to be at his most effective."