Rowett declares Solomon-Otabor 'the new Demarai Gray'
Viv Solomon-Otabor in action for Birmingham City - image via Birmingham Mail

It hasn't taken long for Viv Solomon-Otabor, the 19-year-old winger from South London, to make a name for himself in the West Midlands.

The youngster has only played a handful of games for Birmingham City, but scored his first goal for the club, and indeed professional football, when he came on to help his side beat Fulham 5-2 just before the international break.

Originally on the books for Crystal Palace as a boy, he has come far since opting to take up a scholarship with the Blues. Last year he got valuable experience with National League North side Oxford City, immediately becoming a starting XI player and going on to score in his first game against Gloucester. However, he couldn't prevent them getting relegated.

Solomon-Otabor could be better than Gray

After being invited to train with the Nigerian Olympic team over the summer, the player has come on leaps and bounds, leading his manager to tell the BBC "if he can piece it all together, he's going to be another Demarai Gray".

Gray himself as been subject to high praise for many top footballing pundits, and has been subject to a £5m target for Premier League side Bournemouth. And should he get his big move to the England's top tier, he could be set for great things.

However Gary Rowett was keen to suggest in areas, Viv Solomon-Otabor might be better than Gray, claiming that he is stronger and quicker than his fellow winger and that while he doesn't take players on in the same way as Gray, he's got "two really good feet".

Gray may have excelled since Rowett was appointed last year, but the Birmingham boss may have found another gem in Solomon-Otabor who, should he hit the ground running in upcoming matches, may become a vital member of a side chasing promotion back to the Premier League.

Top-flight dreams

Birmingham resume their campaign at home to relegation-threatened Charlton Athletic this weekend, and with City flying high in sixth place, they'll be looking to put a firm marker on their dreams of returning to where they feel they belong.