Aston Villa midfielder Nigel Reo-Coker says leaving London was the best move for his career.
Former West Ham captain Reo-Coker admitted: "It was an easy decision for me to come to Villa. It is really nice to get away from London if you do take your football seriously.
"It is what I do and what I love and it has been a breath of fresh air coming up here. I can come to Villa Park, do my work, train hard and then go home and just rest.
"Being here, it is about football. There are fewer distractions here, fewer friends calling on me and suggesting we go out and do this or that.
"Of course, it is an individual thing whether players prefer London or Birmingham but for me it is about being a professional - a professional footballer. For me the move to Birmingham was an opportunity I couldn't turn down."
Reo-Coker added: "In London there are a lot of events and promotions, a lot of things happening. It has been great for me to get out of the eye of the media.
"I read stories that this player and that player have been to a nightclub and apparently done this or that. There is always stuff plastered on internet gossip columns.
"Some people will read those stories and believe everything they read without knowing the facts or the truth. I am happy now just to be focusing on the football and I am enjoying it."