At the age of 33, Craig Gardner is one of the elder statesman of the current Birmingham City squad, with the midfielder having played a total of over 390 games in a career which has seen him spend time at Aston Villa, Sunderland and West Brom.
The veteran has only been afforded one appearance in the Carabao Cup this term as he seemingly closes in on becoming a full time coach for the Blues in the not too distant future.
Despite the fact that he has hardly played, Gardner’s current role is as a player-coach, with the midfielder seemingly set to retire come the summer when his current deal expires with the club in order to take on a permanent role as part of Pep Clotet’s staff.
QUIZ: Are these 15 ex-Birmingham City players still playing? See if you can get full marks down below!
Given the fact that Gardner is yet to have hung up his boots just yet, many Birmingham City fans were quick to debate his future when asked by the Blues_HQ Twitter account if the midfielder is still considered to be an important member of the squad, prompting a wide array of responses from the St Andrew’s faithful.
Here, we take a look at some of the best reactions from supporters to the question via social media.
To be fair we’re still thin on the ground regarding bodies but until the end of the season can’t see a problem if fit enough 👍💙
— Alan Elwell (@elwell_alan) February 13, 2020
Yes if you make him be manager because Craig had years of experience with blues or just play him on the pitch again
— BrummieBrad (@BradleyOliver6) February 13, 2020
— Sean (@BrexitTackle) February 13, 2020
Not as a player as such just in dressing room and be ready in case of injuries etc. Top lad and great to have him around.
— Mark Baga Jones (@baga2265) February 13, 2020
Craig Gardner is an unsung hero and I for one want to keep him at the club – he does so much for Birmingham Homeless too! Top IMO 💙
— Bernadette Sanders (@Bernade28266698) February 13, 2020
— Parko (@parkoblue) February 13, 2020
Leader in the dressing room. He’s a coach now though
— Connor Thompson (@connorbcfc94) February 13, 2020