Boss says Paul Robinson's experience can help the next generation

Paul Robinson
Paul Robinson.

His role now is about giving to everybody else. Giving his years of experience to all those younger players.

Steve Cotterill

Steve Cotterill says that Paul Robinson's new role as a coach with the Under-23s means the defender is unlikely to pull on a Blues playing shirt again.

But the Club Captain's vast experience can be put to good use helping to bring through the next wave of aspiring youngsters.

Robinson was handed a new position working alongside Richard Beale with the Development Squad earlier this week.

Since making the switch to St. Andrew's back in September 2012, the 38-year-old has made an impressive 174 appearances and scored four times.

His last start was in August in the EFL Cup home defeat to Bournemouth.

“Probably, I would say ‘Yes, he has’ (played his last game)," said Cotterill.

“Paul was looking to go into coaching anyway and probably now was as good a time as any.

“I think we have got enough players back there that we can shuffle round should we need to do that.

“He has been a great servant to the Club and he has done a wonderful job over the years.

"He has been a great player in and around the place and had a great career."

Cotterill admits that for someone of Robinson's personality and battling spirit, hanging up his boots was always going to be tough decision.

“He is in his 39th year now. I think there was a bit of a struggle in him relinquishing that and giving it up because he still used to train very well every day, " continued Cotterill.

“But when you look about, I don’t know any other players in their 39th year in the Championship.

“The only player I know very, very well who carried on playing to his 40th year was Graham Alexander.

“After that I don’t know too many others, Gordon Strachan then - and we are going back years.

“You are talking Graham Alexander, Gordon Strachan, Paul Robinson, so it’s great company he has been in."

Cotterill insists it is now up to Robinson to put his 20 plus years’ experience as a player with the likes of Blues, West Bromwich Albion, Bolton Wanderers and Watford to good use working with the next generation of youngsters.

“What he needs to do now is that with everything he has gained out of the game he now needs to give that to our younger players,” concluded the Blues boss.

“His role now is about giving to everybody else. Giving his years of experience to all those younger players, helping coach them and helping support me and the other staff.

"He can teach a lot of the young players the streetwise playing side of it.

"Hopefully he will be good. If he's not something's wrong."