Date: 14th January 2008 at 1:25pm
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Defender Olivier Tebily has left Birmingham City after the club paid up the rest of his contract, which was due to expire in the summer.

The 32-year-old former Ivory Coast international moved to St Andrews from Celtic in 2002 for around £700,000. Tebily was initially a regular but has made just a handful of appearances in the past 18-months.

Tebily told the club’s official site: “I would like to thank the club, the staff and my team-mates, and of course the fans for the backing that I received during my time at Birmingham.

“I really enjoyed my time at the club and I had some fantastic times during almost six years that I was here. But I have now reached a stage in my career where I felt it was time to move on.”

Despite not holding down a regular first-team slot for an extended period since damaging his medial knee ligaments in December 2002 – an injury that kept him out for the season – Tebily’s versatility was such that he was given a new three-year deal in September 2005.

Tebily’s last game in a Birmingham shirt was against Norwich in October 2006. He is now free to find another club in order to try and find some first-team football for the few years that presumably remain of his career.