Belfast Telegraph

Wednesday 22 October 2014

Manchester City striker Craig Bellamy to train at Cardiff but Celtic hopeful

Manchester City have given Craig Bellamy permission to train with Cardiff City today as they seek another home for their disaffected striker.

As with Shay Given, City are reluctant to let Bellamy join a club that is also chasing a top-four place in the Premier League, leaving Celtic, Fulham and Sunderland as the three front-runners to recruit the Welshman.

Tottenham were believed to be interested in bringing Bellamy back to London where he spent two years with West Ham, but they have now pulled out of the race.

The Spurs manager, Harry Redknapp, said last night: “I couldn't see them loaning him to us.”

Bellamy, 31, is considered surplus to requirements at Eastlands — especially now that City have spent £22m on the Italy striker Mario Balotelli, who will be unveiled at the club's training ground at lunchtime today.

Bellamy has said that he is keen to one day turn out for Cardiff, his home town club, but with the Welsh club beset by financial problems they may struggle to afford Bellamy's wages.

Bellamy had a loan spell at Celtic five years ago and Neil Lennon, the Glasgow side's fledgling manager, has been in contact with his agent to signal his interest.

From the outside that would appear to be a move that would suit all parties.

Bellamy often speaks highly of his time in the SPL, he wouldn’t be a threat to City and Celtic would gain a striker who would score an abundance of goals there.

“I'm not going to comment about individual players but there is nobody that we are looking at that is dead in the water,” said John Reid, Celtic's chairman yesterday.

“There are some that are more difficult than others for a host of reasons. It's not primarily financial. In a lot of these cases it is down to where the player himself wants to play.”

Redknapp believes any move outside the top flight would be a “waste” of Bellamy's talents. “He's a Premier League player, isn't he?” said Redknapp. “No disrespect to Cardiff, but it would be a waste really. He should be playing top Premier League football.”

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