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Page last updated at 09:53 GMT, Wednesday, 28 January 2009

Bruce angry over Palacios switch

Palacios (right) in action for Wigan against Manchester Citwilson y
Palacios (right) in action for Wigan against Manchester City

Wigan manager Steve Bruce has accused Manchester City of helping to engineer Wilson Palacios' move to Tottenham so they could sign Craig Bellamy.

Bruce believes City agreed with Spurs to drop their interest in Palacios in return for the Londoners not competing with them for the West Ham striker.

"They used the boy as a weapon and used our club as a vehicle to get Bellamy," he said. "City behaved disgustingly.

"If they had not unsettled Palacios, he would have signed a contract for us."

Tottenham signed midfielder Palacios for 12m on 21 January, two days after they missed out on Bellamy, who switched from West Ham to City for 14m.

But Bruce feels Honduras international Palacios was in two minds about signing for Spurs until Manchester City showed an interest in him.

606: DEBATE
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"He was wobbling and wasn't sure about going to London," added Bruce. "We had offered him a contract and he was on the verge of signing that contract.

"Then Manchester City ring him and it's a different ball game. They have shown a lack of respect for this football club and the player himself."

City have rejected Bruce's claims that they behaved improperly.

A club statement said: "Whilst Manchester City FC has the utmost respect for Steve Bruce and his views, the club wishes to make it absolutely clear that the only inquiry made in relation to Wilson Palacios was by a private phone call to [Wigan chief executive] Brenda Spencer.

"The call was made to establish the potential availability of the player. No figures were discussed or any bids made."

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see also
Tottenham agree deal for Palacios
21 Jan 09 |  Tottenham
Man City complete Bellamy signing
19 Jan 09 |  Man City
Birmingham sign Honduran Palacios
31 Aug 07 |  Birmingham


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