Date: 16th February 2018 at 9:26am
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Robbo. Our very own captain, leader, legend. Many Blues fans, and fans of Watford, West Brom, Leeds and Bolton, will have had a slight lump in their throat yesterday when Paul Robinson announced he is to retire at the end of the season.

After 763 career appearances, Robbo has decided to call it a day.

This summer will mark Robbo’s sixth anniversary as a Birmingham City player. His time at St. Andrews has been fairly successful.

Since signing on a temporary contract in September 2012, Robbo quickly established himself as a fans favourite and was soon named club captain.

If anything, signing for Blues showed the football world how much he loves the game. Lee Clark was the manager at that time and the club was going through great financial strain. With Carson Yeung being investigated for money laundering, Blues didn’t have a proverbial pot to pee in. Literally.

Clark needed fresh blood, he needed a leader. In walks Robbo on £250 a week. That is less than the average office worker. To watch his committed performances, you wouldn’t have guessed he was a man on a week-by-week contract.

Within a month, Robbo’s contract had been extended to the end of the season and then he agreed a one-year contract, with an option for a further year, ahead of the 2013-14 season. That was when he was made captain, such was his worth to a struggling team and his influence in the dressing room.

Here was a man who just wanted to play football by any means neccessary. Robinson may have a bit of a short fuse, but the game needs players like him. They are a dying breed.

An old-fashioned English defender. Hard into the tackle. Takes no prisoners.

Until he reached his thirties, Robbo’s career had predominantly been served as a left back. Making his debut for Watford, his hometown club, in 1996, Robinson eventually clocked up 252 appearances for The Hornets. He was even part of the team which sent Blues crashing out of the play-offs in 1999. He was sent off in the first leg at Vicarage Road resulting in his suspension for the return leg at St. Andrews in which Blues lost on penalties.

After a promotion and relegation with Watford, Robinson moved to West Bromwich Albion for £375,000. At this point he was at the top of his game and was being touted as a potential England left-back by Baggies boss Bryan Robson.

During a derby with Blues at St. Andrews, Robinson was the subject of an incident in which he broke Damien Johnson’s jaw. The Blues faithful were baying for his blood.

In 2009, Robinson moved to Bolton on a season long loan before signing permanently one year later. A temporary spell at Leeds United followed before he was part of a Bolton clear-out following relegation.

After training with MLS side Toronto FC, Blues came calling and B9 has been his home ever since.

Robbo won’t be remembered for his goals or red cards – which have both hit double figures – he will be fondly remembered for wearing his heart on his sleeve and always giving 100%.

The perfect summary of his character comes with how quickly the Blues fans forgave him for the aforementioned incident wth Johnson. A handful of games in the royal blue was enough for the fans to extend a hand.

A consummate professional, a perfect gentleman.

Good luck in the future Robbo. Keep Right On!

 
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