You may be surprised where these 6 ex-Birmingham City stars are playing now | OneFootball

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Football League World

·23 September 2023

You may be surprised where these 6 ex-Birmingham City stars are playing now

Article image:You may be surprised where these 6 ex-Birmingham City stars are playing now

Birmingham City have seen players come and go over the years and the summer was no different as it was a busy transfer window at St Andrew's.

Today, we're taking a look at six ex-Birmingham players who are still plying their trade in the beautiful game.

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David Davis

Having come through the academy of Wolves, Davis made an all-Midlands transfer when joining the Blues in 2014.

With a decent amount of games under his belt in the Championship and League One, Davis arrived when he was 23 years old and he had the potential to be a top second tier midfielder, and for four years he was a regular in City's midfield.

However, an ankle injury in 2018 meant that he spent a long period of time on the sidelines, and within 18 months he had fallen out of favour at the club and was loaned to Charlton Athletic in January 2020.

Davis' career has somewhat tailed off and currently, he is contracted to League Two outfit Forest Green Rovers, although he spent the second half of last season at Solihull Moors on loan in the National League and is not in favour at The New Lawn.

Maikel Kieftenbeld

A real fan favourite during his time at St Andrew's, Kieftenbeld was signed from Groningen for just €250,000 - a fee which proved to be remarkably cheap for his overall contributions.

The Dutchman played 184 times for the Blues in his five-and-a-half years with the club, whilst also spending nearly a year out in that time with a serious knee injury.

Kieftenbeld never did anything flashy in midfield but he did the dirty work well, and when he left for Millwall in 2021 there was a feeling of sadness among the fanbase.

He only played for the Lions for 18 months though and in 2022 he returned to his home nation to play for Emmen, where he is still playing in the second tier of Dutch football.

Clayton Donaldson

An experienced Championship striker in his prime, Donaldson joined from Brentford in 2014 and whilst a Birmingham player he became a Jamaica international.

The striker scored 33 times in 117 appearances for Birmingham, and after departing in 2017 he played for Sheffield United and Bolton in the second tier before eventually dropping down the leagues.

Now aged 39, Donaldson is a player/manager for West Yorkshire outfit Farsley Celtic, who ply their trade in the National League North and he's even regularly starting himself up-front still despite his advancing years.

Jeremie Bela

Brought in on a free transfer in 2019, Bela wasn't always consistent for Birmingham but he did have a bit of quality and pace.

The French winger racked up 101 appearances in a Blues shirt, scoring nine times and notching 18 assists, which is a goal contribution to game ratio of around one in four - not bad by any stretch of the imagination.

Playing out of position in his final season at the club, Bela left in the summer of 2022, joining Clermont of Ligue 1 where he is being used as somewhat of an impact player off the bench.

Callum Reilly

Reilly still hasn't reached the age of 30 yet, but is now in non-league with Tamworth in the sixth tier of English football.

The midfielder made his debut as an 18-year-old for City in 2012 and ended up featuring 66 times for the club, but he was released in 2015 and ended up in League One with Burton Albion.

Spending the next seven years as a third tier player, Reilly dropped into non-league initially on loan with Solihull Moors in March 2022 before signing for Banbury United later that year.

Jon Toral

Spanish midfielder Toral had two spells with Birmingham, firstly on loan in the 2015-16 season from Arsenal before returning permanently in 2020, having been at Hull City previously.

Toral won multiple Player of the Year awards when he was on loan with the Blues, scoring eight times and bagging three assists, but his performances led to him having no chance of coming back for another year as he secured a La Liga loan instead to Granada.

Four years later though, he did return to the Midlands permanently, but it was an injury-hit campaign and that led to him not getting an extended deal - he instead signed for OFI Crete of Greece in 2021 and he is now into the third year of his deal, playing 49 times and scoring 11 goals in the previous two seasons.

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