Birmingham have suffered a major blow after confirming that defender Scott Dann will miss the remainder of the season.
As exclusively revealed by skysports.com, Dann was facing an early end to his campaign because of the serious hamstring problem he sustained in the recent Carling Cup defeat to West Ham.
Blues boss Alex McLeish subsequently admitted it was unlikely the 23-year-old would feature again this term.
The defender underwent a successful hamstring operation on Tuesday and it has now been confirmed he will miss the remainder of the campaign.
McLeish said: "Scott had a successful operation the other day but he will be out for the rest of the season.
"You don't want to see your back four being disrupted too much.
"Scott has been an excellent performer, very consistent, and he is going to get even better.
"But I'm philosophical about these things. You've just got to get on with it.
"Managers can't legislate for injuries and suspensions and we've lost a good man.
"But it is up to his team-mates to show we won't miss him as much as we think."
Liam Ridgewell will now partner Roger Johnson in defence but McLeish also has faith in Cech international Martin Jiranek if required.
He said: "We've got Martin Jiranek here as cover. Martin, although he is untried in the Premier League, is an experienced international.
"If something happens again, then Martin will come in."