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PersonalFull Name: Craig Bellamy
Born: 13 July 1979
Signed: Jan 05
Left: June 05
International Caps: [complete at end of career]
International Goals: [complete at end of career]
BiogControversial Welsh international striker Craig Bellamy was a shock transfer deadline day loan signing on January 31st 2005.
Bellamy's move to Parkhead was a typically last-gasp Martin O'Neill transfer deal which had Celtic supporters glued to the internet and radio right up to the final hours of deadline day. The shock move came about due to Bellamy's well-publicised falling out with then Newcastle boss Graeme Souness who had vowed the forward would never play for him again.
Bellamy's very public loathing of the former Rangers boss and his declared love of Celtic made him an instant hit with the support, although he was less than impressive on his league debut - a 2-0 defeat to Rangers at Parkhead on February 20th. However it wasn't long before Bellamy was stamping his undoubted quality on Celtic performances.
Fantastic pace, a tigerish attitude and no shortage of skill made Bellamy a nightmare for defenders. He quickly became a massive asset for Celtic and his performances in the Hoops coupled with a swaggering confidence made him a hugely popular figure. A fantastic hat-trick in a 3-2 victory at Dundee United and a wonderful goal at Ibrox in a 2-1 triumph saw the Welshman put the Bhoys on the verge of another Championship.
However Celtic were to suffer a fatal loss of form and on the final day of the season Bellamy and his team-mates misfired badly in a 2-1 loss at Motherwell which gifted the title to Rangers. A Scottish Cup final triumph followed but it was in truth an anti-climax, and scant reward for a player who had produced some inspiring displays for the Bhoys in his brief time at Parkhead.
With Bellamy's loan period over their were some hopes that the player would remain with the Hoops and he certainly made it clear that he would warmly welcome a permanent deal. Sadly Celtic could simply not afford Bellamy and the player moved from Newcastle to Blackburn. His form at Ewood Park earned a 'dream move' to Liverpool but his time at Liverpool was perhaps the least impressive of his career.
He looked far from happy under Raphael Benitez at Anfield and after just a year on Merseyside he cut his losses and moved south to West Ham. A return to form with the Hammers saw Man City - the recent subject of a takeover by Arab billionaires - splash £14 million to take Bellamy back to the north west of England in January 2009.
At City the rejuvenated Bellamy hit the form of his life but the sacking of manager and former Wales team-mate Mark Hughes spelt the begining of the end for the forward. New City boss Roberto Mancini clashed with the player over several issues and with the cash-ladden owners splashing out staggering sums for new players it was clear it was only a matter of time before Bellamy was heading for the exit door.
This unrest alerted Celtic manager Neil Lennon and in the summer of 2010 the Parkhead board put together a package to try and lure Bellamy back to Glasgow. With City apparently unwilling to let the Welshman join any of their Premiership rivals hopes were high that the player would return north of the border. But on August 17th - after days of intense speculation - Bellamy agreed to move to hometown club Cardiff City in England's Championship.
Citing family reason and a longheld love of the Bluebirds Bellamy said he was flattered by Celtic's interest but that ultimately it was the switch to Cardiff that most appealed to him.
|Club||From||To||Fee||League||Scottish/FA Cup||League cup||Other|
|Man City||19/01/2009||£14,000,000||7 (1)||2||0 (0)||0||0 (0)||0||3 (0)||2|
|West Ham||10/07/2007||19/01/2009||£7,500,000||20 (4)||7||1 (0)||0||1 (0)||2||0 (0)||0|
|Liverpool||22/06/2006||10/07/2007||£6,000,000||23 (4)||7||0 (0)||0||2 (0)||0||8 (5)||2|
|Blackburn||08/07/2005||22/06/2006||£5,000,000||22 (5)||13||1 (0)||2||3 (1)||2||0 (0)||0|
|Celtic||31/01/2005||30/05/2005||Loan||12 (0)||7||3 (0)||2||0 (0)||0||0 (0)||0|
|Newcastle||25/06/2001||08/07/2005||£6,000,000||87 (6)||28||5 (0)||0||3 (2)||4||24 (1)||11|
|Coventry||17/08/2000||25/06/2001||£6,500,000||33 (1)||6||2 (0)||1||3 (0)||1||0 (0)||0|
|Norwich||01/08/1996||17/08/2000||Trainee||71 (13)||32||1 (0)||0||6 (0)||2||0 (0)||0|
|Totals||£45,000,000||275 (34)||102||13 (0)||5||18 (3)||11||35 (6)||15|
|goals / game||0.33||0.38||0.52||0.36|
Honours with CelticScottish Cup
Quotes"Celtic Park is one of the greatest stadiums in the world and i would love to go back up there,my time there was one of the highlights of my career and who knows what could have happend but i would recommend that club and to player and to play against rangers in an old firm derby is a must for any footballer"
(Craig Bellamy on Talksport 15 Dec 06)
"Chris [Sutton] doesn't like anyone's company, so if he likes Bellamy that is a major plus. If he passes the Sutton test, then he should pass anything."
Martin O'Neill (Celtic Manager)
Craig Bellany(from Evening Times 6 Aug 2009)
He said: "I had a great time up here. I consider myself very fortunate to play for Celtic and in the Old Firm game. It was brilliant, a great experience in my life. I am very grateful I got it. I expected to get stick from the Rangers fans. I get stick at a lot of grounds in England. But it was a little bit more than the stuff I get elsewhere last night. Some of the stuff they said was a little bit different.
"I have played for a few clubs in my career and in a few derby matches, but the rivalry between the Old Firm is the most intense I have ever experienced.
"But, having said that, you don't need a player trying to effing hit you, if you know what I mean. That's the reason I am hobbling around on flip flops now.
"I'm not going to mention the guy's name. I'm not even bothered about him. He got an extra cheer from the crowd for it didn't he, so obviously he felt it is worth his while."
Bellamy, though, is hopeful he will be fit for City's next game with his former club Celtic at the City of Manchester Stadium on Saturday.
And he has vowed to give his all against Tony Mowbray's men if he gets the nod to play from current gaffer Mark Hughes.
He stated: "My foot obviously isn't the greatest at the moment after what happened last night, but I am going to have some treatment on it and hopefully it should be okay.
"Playing for Celtic was a great time in my life. It was only a short time, but it was one of my favourite times.
"I feel grateful to have an experience that a lot of people would have wanted. With the status of the respective Premier Leagues today, it isn't an opportunity that will come along often. I think it's unlikely I will play for Celtic ever again.
"It is getting close to the kick-off of the Barclays Premier League season. We don't go into pre-season games looking to lose.
"We try to win every game we play in whether it be a pre-season game or a game of five-a-sides and we will be trying to beat Celtic."
Latest page update: made by TheHumanTorpedo
, Aug 18 2010, 8:21 AM EDT
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