Birmingham City have signed teenage defender Emmanuel Mbende following his summer exit from Borussia Dortmund.
The 19-year-old, who has been on trial with Blues for a month since leaving the German Bundesliga side, has signed up for the rest of the 2015-16 season.
"He'd been at Dortmund a while," Blues boss Gary Rowett told BBC WM 95.6.
"He felt his opportunities were limited given the huge powerhouse of a club they are. But he fills a gap. We think he's different to what we have."
|Blues falter at home after bright start|
|Birmingham City lie ninth in the Championship table after a promising start to the season, in which they have lost just twice in eight games - successive home defeats by Nottingham Forest and Rotherham United.|
Mbende, who has played for Cameroon at youth level, has made three appearances for Birmingham's development side and will initially be part of their Under-21 squad rather than the first team.
Rowett added: "We've had a look at Emmanuel for two or there weeks and we've taken him on a development contract.
"He's about six foot four wide and six foot four high. There's a lot to work on because of his attributes. He's technically very good and we haven't got an Under-21 defender of that size and power.
"Obviously he's got a good pedigree at Dortmund. It's a case of us giving him an opportunity to see if we can push him into the first team group."
|BBC WM phone-in with Gary Rowett|
|Blues boss Gary Rowett will be available to talk to City fans on Monday 5 October (18:00-19:00 BST) on the Football Phone-In on BBC WM 95.6.|