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Bellamy and De Jong join Hughes masterplan

Published 20/01/2009

Craig Bellamy last night signed for Manchester City.

The Wales international has agreed a four-and-a-half-year contract with the Blues after agreeing personal terms and passing a medical and is expected to make his debut against former club Newcastle on January 28.

Bellamy originally wanted to join Tottenham but once West Ham made it clear they were not going to let the striker join their London rivals, he quickly agreed to link up again with countryman Mark Hughes.

"I am delighted to be working with Craig once more," Hughes said.

"He is an outstanding player who provides us with qualities that we are slightly lacking. He has blistering pace, has bags of of enthusiasm and has a superb attitude to training. He will be a great addition to the squad."

It is thought City will pay £14million for Bellamy, whose speed should provide a useful threat alongside first-choice front-man Robinho.

While his combustible temperament has seen Bellamy get into trouble far too often, when fit he is a major attacking weapon. Crucially, he is also free to play in the remainder of City's UEFA Cup campaign.

The deal should leave the way clear for Tottenham to complete the transfer of Wigan midfielder Wilson Palacios.

Bellamy will join his new team-mates at a training camp in Tenerife, where he could joined by Holland international Nigel de Jong.

Hamburg have confirmed a fee — also believed to be around £13million — has been agreed with City for De Jong, who should bring some much-needed steel to their midfield.

De Jong is yet to agree personal terms but, as with Bellamy, negotiations are expected to be concluded swiftly.

Belfast Telegraph

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