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Page last updated at 14:33 GMT, Wednesday, 7 July 2010 15:33 UK

Roy Aitken quits Birmingham City for Al Ahli

Roy Aitken
Aitken had been at Birmingham since November 2007

First-team coach Roy Aitken has left Birmingham City to team up with former Aston Villa manager David O'Leary in the United Arab Emirates.

Aitken will link up with O'Leary, whom he worked under at both Villa and Leeds United, at Al Ahli in Dubai.

"Naturally I'm very disappointed to lose an extremely valued member of the club," boss Alex McLeish told the Blues official website.

"Roy goes with my thanks and blessings and I totally understand his decision."

Aitken has been at St Andrew's since November 2007 and McLeish says he will leave a gap in the backroom staff.

"Because of his vast experience and personality there can be no doubting this leaves a bit of a void," McLeish admitted.

"It is one we will work hard to fill as soon as possible. The new owners have given me great support and I'm sure they'll assist in helping find a suitable replacement for Roy."

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