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By ESPN Staff
Feb 26, 2008

Hamstrung Kapo gives McLeish the Blues

Birmingham midfielder Olivier Kapo will be out of action for a month after suffering a hamstring injury during Saturday's 2-2 draw with Arsenal at St Andrews. Kapo, who returned against the Gunners after suspension, was substituted with the problem after an hour and replaced by on-loan Mauro Zarate. And City manager Alex McLeish believes the injury could have been caused because of the strain placed on Kapo and the rest of the players of having to play all but the opening three minutes of the game with 10 men. That was as a result of central defender Martin Taylor's sending-off after the challenge on Gunners striker Eduardo, who suffered a badly broken leg. Kapo, signed from Juventus last summer, is Birmingham's joint leading scorer with five goals. McLeish told www.bcfc.com: 'Kapo is out for four weeks with a hamstring injury. I think playing with 10 men put an extra strain on all of the players. 'Kapo was key for us in the first half because he provided a great outlet for Maik Taylor and he also won an awful lot of balls in the air for us and kept the ball alive for us in the first half. 'In other circumstances the ball may have just kept coming back into our half and putting us under more pressure.' Birmingham may have a new centre-back pairing for Saturday's match with Tottenham as Liam Ridgewell is doubtful with an ankle injury sustained against Arsenal. McLeish added: 'Ridgewell is doubtful for the Spurs game. He'll train on Friday and we will make a final decision on Saturday and give him until the last minute. 'But we have got cover with players like Radhi Jaidi to come back in and Franck Queudrue who can play at centre-half as well. Stephen Kelly also came in and did a good job as a centre-half against Arsenal.' Taylor will definitely be absent as he has to serve a three game ban for his red card against Arsene Wenger's side.