A former Birmingham City Football Club youth academy player stole a mobile phone in a moment of madness, a judge heard.
Richard Musonza, who spent four years at Blues youth academy struck in Wolverhampton, the court heard.
The victim had advertised a £650 mobile phone for sale on the internet site Gumtree and was waiting in the street to meet a would-be buyer on August 4 last year when the 20-year-old footballer arrived.
The seller had called at a nearby house where the meeting was due to take place but had been told the person was on his way to the address.
He was then approached by Musonza who, during a short conversation, gave the impression he was the person who was buying the mobile, Wolverhampton Crown Court heard.
Miss Amy Edinborough, prosecuting, said: “He was given it to inspect. The owner became suspicious and made clear he would prefer to continue the conversation in the house.
“The defendant said he didn’t have his keys and would have to go through the back and meet him at the front door.”
But Musonza took the phone with him and disappeared leaving the victim to call police.
Officers took him on a tour of the area during which he spotted the thief but the phone was not recovered.
Mr Christopher Gibbons, defending, said: “He did something exceedingly stupid. He was with the Birmingham City Youth Academy for four years and is now playing as a semi professional.
“He is paid £200 per match when he plays.”
Musonza, a first year marketing management student at Manchester Metropolitan University and from Headland Road, Warstones, admitted theft and was told by Recorder Anthony Warner: “It is a great pity that your are here.”
The defendant was given a two year conditional discharge and ordered to pay £650 compensation and £350 costs.