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Page last updated at 09:48 GMT, Monday, 16 August 2010 10:48 UK

Craig Bellamy allowed to train with Cardiff City

Craig Bellamy tells the media last week why he fears for his Man City future

Manchester City have granted striker Craig Bellamy permission to train with Cardiff City, fuelling rumours he may sign for the Championship club on loan.

Cardiff admit they "would love" to sign the Wales captain who is out of favour at the Premier League big-spenders.

The 31-year-old has been linked with a six-month loan to his home-town club amid expectations that he will be left out of Roberto Mancini's 25-man squad.

Fulham and Scottish giants Celtic have registered an interest to sign Bellamy.

A Cardiff spokesman said: "With the number and names of the clubs being mentioned in connection with Craig, it is flattering that we are an option."

Bellamy last week revealed he would consider quitting football if he is frozen out at Mancini's big-spending City - and the City boss said the striker should find a new club after revealing he would be omitted from his Premier League and 23-man Europa Cup squads.

My wife and kids live here and I've missed them for the last five or six years. So that would have more of a pull more than most. I certainly wouldn't rule that out

Wales captain Craig Bellamy on a possible move to Cardiff City

Fulham, now managed by Bellamy's hero Mark Hughes, have admitted they want to sign him, Celtic boss Neil Lennon says his club have spoken to Bellamy's agent while City's Champions League qualifying rivals Tottenham Hotspur also want the 59-times capped Welshman.

But Mancini - whose striking options include Carlos Tevez, Emmanuel Adebayor, Jo, Roque Santa Cruz and new-signing Mario Balotelli - is reluctant to sell Bellamy to a Premier League rival.

Bellamy was one of the top performers of last season's Premier League and scored his 18th Wales goal in their 5-1 friendly win over Luxembourg last week after admitting he "certainly wouldn't rule out" a move to last season's Championship play-off finalists.

If he was to leave Eastlands, City would prefer Bellamy not to move to one of their rivals so Cardiff and Celtic are an attraction.

But the Cardiff statement said: "Being connected to a player of this calibre shows how far we have come to be even considered in a deal like this.

Criag Bellamy
Craig Bellamy has already played for eight teams during his career

"We would love for it to happen but we are by no means alone in this. At this stage, it is pure speculation."

The Welsh club, who have survived two separate winding-up orders from Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs this summer, have estimated debts between £15m-£30m that their new Malaysian major shareholders are bidding to restructure.

Boss Dave Jones admitted on Friday that Bellamy's wage demands could be an issue but the Cardiff fan, who trained with Cardiff last season when recovering from injury, publicly admitted last week that signing for the Bluebirds is an ambition.

"I've always wanted to play for Cardiff," Bellamy told a news conference.

"My wife and kids live here and I've missed them for the last five or six years.

"So that would have more of a pull more than most. I certainly wouldn't rule that out.

"Would I love to get Cardiff into the Premier League? Of course I would, I would have more of an impact doing that than playing 100 games for Wales.

"For us to move forward as a nation football wise we do need a Premier League team to come from Wales, either Swansea or ourselves."

Jones constantly stresses he never talks about signing a player until the deal is done but Cardiff took the unusual step of releasing a statement amid growing speculation that Bellamy will sign a six-month loan deal and be made Bluebirds captain.

Bellamy would be arguably Cardiff's highest-profile signing ever, but Jones did attract former Premier League superstars Robbie Fowler and Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink to the Welsh capital a few seasons ago.

Cardiff, who want Bellamy to fire them to Premier League promotion, hope to have help from their Malaysian backers as well as Manchester City to pay Bellamy's wages.

Cardiff were under a transfer embargo for most of the summer due to their most recent £1.3m PAYE debt but have completed the signings of Jason Koumas, Seyi Olofinjana, Danny Drinkwater and Tom Heaton since the ban was lifted.

But the club fear another transfer ban so Jones knows he must work quickly to strengthen his squad.

Bellamy, who has endured long-standing knee problems, has been a Premier League regular since joining Coventry from Norwich in 2000 - except a five-month loan stint at Celtic during his time at Newcastle United - and played for Liverpool, West Ham and also Blackburn Rovers.



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see also
Celtic bond cannot sway Bellamy
17 Aug 10 |  Celtic
Fulham admit interest in Bellamy
13 Aug 10 |  Fulham
I could quit football - Bellamy
10 Aug 10 |  Man City
Cardiff survive winding-up order
11 Aug 10 |  Cardiff
Bellamy overlooked for Europa tie
11 Aug 10 |  Man City
Cardiff transfer embargo lifted
06 Aug 10 |  Cardiff
Bellamy eyes Cardiff City future
31 May 10 |  Cardiff
Mancini denies new Bellamy rift
23 Apr 10 |  Man City


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