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The numbers behind Arsenal's striker search

Arsenal
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King ruled out for the season

Birmingham City striker Marlon King will not play again this season after having to undergo knee surgery.

King, 32, has been suffering from the injury all season and was due for an operation on Monday.

Despite the problem, the former Coventry City man has still managed to score 14 goals this term, making him the club's top scorer.

Blues boss Lee Clark, though, admitted that the operation was needed sooner rather than later.

"As the weeks have gone on his knee has not held up too well," he told BBC West Midlands. "It's a big blow for us. Marlon's an experienced player, a goalscorer and, whatever formation he plays in, he's a threat.

"We've taken advice from a specialist to get it done and he'll then have to get through his rehab to be ready in time for pre-season training. But losing him is someone else's opportunity and we'll now have Wes Thomas and Peter Lovenkrands fighting for a shirt."

The loss of King follows on from Saturday's 5-2 thrashing by Hull City - a result which leaves Birmingham just six points above the Championship relegation zone.

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