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Birmingham City board back beleaguered Zola

Zola has won just two of 22 matches since replacing Gary Rowett as manager. Credit: PA

Birmingham City have denied their are planning to replace under-pressure boss Gianfranco Zola.

Zola has lost 13 of his 22 games - winning just twice - since replacing Gary Rowett in December and Birmingham have slumped from seventh to 18th, six points above the bottom three.

Birmingham City would like to clarify the situation in regard to Gianfranco Zola after recent articles in the media over the weekend: the club has not lined up any manager to replace Gianfranco, who has the continual full support of the Blues Board of Directors.

Whilst we understand the frustrations caused by the run of results, the way the supporters got behind Gianfranco and the team on Saturday at St. Andrew's was typical of Blues fans' passion, care for the club and desire for success, which is what we all share and much appreciate.

The board and all departments at the club are keeping united and standing alongside Gianfranco, his staff and the players, to try and play the kind of football every Blues supporter deserves to watch.

– Birmingham City statement

Birmingham approach Zola after dismissing Rowett

Zola is reportedly wanted by Birmingham. Credit: Reuters

Birmingham would like to speak with Gianfranco Zola about succeeding Gary Rowett as manager, Press Association Sport understands.

The Championship club announced on Wednesday afternoon that they had terminated Rowett's contract, and those of his backroom staff, and former Chelsea forward Zola is high on the list of prospective candidates to replace him at St Andrew's.

Zola, who has managed in England at West Ham and Watford, was in the running to take over at Hull in the summer but the deal did not materialise.

Birmingham's Far East owners are thought to want a high profile name in charge of the club and Zola, 50, certainly fits the bill as regards the reputation he built for himself as a player at Napoli, Parma and Chelsea.

Rowett's sacking was something of a surprise with Birmingham only outside the play-off places on goal difference after winning 2-1 at home to Ipswich on Tuesday night.