Filed: Saturday, 17th January 2009
By: Staff Writer
Several sources are reporting today that Craig Bellamy has effectively gone on strike after refusing to play against Fulham tomorrow.
Bellamy, who was the subject of a bid worth around £10million plus incentives from Tottenham yesterday [Friday] is said to have stormed out of Chadwell Heath on Friday morning after he was told that Spurs' bid had been refused, and that he was therefore denied permission to speak to them with regards to a move.
The Welsh international - who also remains strongly linked with Manchester City - is reported to have refused Scott Duxbury's offer of a two-year contract extension before leaving the ground having told Hammers staff that he would be not be playing in tomorrow's Premier League clash.
The circumstances of Bellamy's looming departure are similar to those of Anton Ferdinand who joined Sunderland in the summer transfer window. He too was reportedly offered a new contract before having that offer retracted and being informed that the club had instead accepted an £8million offer for him.
West Ham have thus far rejected all offers for Bellamy but, crucially, have stopped short of saying that he is not for sale, leading many supporters to believe that the 29-year-old's departure is inevitable. A fee in the region of £15million is thought to be the figure United are holding out for.
A gloomy Gianfranco Zola also appeared resigned to losing Bellamy when he told reporters: "he is important for us - but I am prepared to deal without him."
Tottenham boss Harry Redknapp has been accused by certain sections of the footballing fraternity of tapping up Bellamy, having made a series of comments about the United striker to the press since the transfer window opened.
But in typical fashion Redknapp - who is set to face the wrath of travelling Portsmouth fans when Tottenham host his former club at White Hart Lane today - refused to accept any criticism of his conduct, telling reporters:
"We haven't tapped anyone up. I haven't done anything wrong. If Craig Bellamy says he wants to go to Tottenham because someone has told him we've made an offer then that's up to him.
"It's not my fault."
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10:19PM 17th Jan 2009
''What's really bizarre is we are the only side of the deal that really seems to benefit!
Even £10mill for him (and probably £80k plus a week) for an injury prone unloyal and disruptive player is ridiculous. I've just been speaking to a Spurs fan mate of mine (I know, I'm sorry) and they cant stand him! They dont want him at all and are praying he goes to City. All really odd.''
10:06PM 17th Jan 2009
''There we all were thinking the club would stitch us up and it turns out to be Bellamy all along.
Obviously he can't play after this and much as I'd like him to sit in the reserves and rot (which is similar to his playing career for us anyway) he is a pivotal goalscorer for us, so sadly a replacement would have to be the go. If Cole hadn't improved we'd be in a hell of a lot of trouble.
What a disgrace, now we know why he moves on every couple of years. He must have no shame at all, after paying his wages for half a season he just up sticks and does it with no class. And what for? We are 10th and looking very positive, Spurs are still looking awful and near bottom, so obviously an increase in wages is the sole reason to sell out all the fans that invested their hopes in you.
And what are Spurs doing?! They've just got bloody Defoe, king of loyalty, and havent they got now about five £15million strikers that aren't scoring? Did they need another to sit on his sofa earning 90k a week?
Makes no sense, he may not get games if the others pick up, he has burnt his bridges with us and probably anyone else, is injured slightly more than half the time, is old, disruptive and Spurs already have tons of strikers.
It makes no sense to anyone but us. Getting rid of such a player for such a high price is about the only good that has come out of it.''
08:22PM 17th Jan 2009
''He deserves all the abuse he will get whenever he returns to Upton Park. Let Zola name him as a sub on sunday and let us as fans let him know in no uncertain terms what we think of him and his lack of ambition.
As for Spurs, season after season it's the same - big spending with very little end product.''
08:20PM 17th Jan 2009
''Harry Redknapp, don't insult mine and everyone's intellegence by saying its got nothing to do with you. Everyone knows it's easy to tap up a player these days, you just phone the agent, he does the rest.
Football has become a farce... who paid Bellamy's wages when he was injured? No loyalty, no intrest in real fans who travel all over the country supporting their teams. Football as we know it has died. Kaka...Abramovic..it's a disgrace.
I'm a season ticket holder for 15 years and I never thought I would see the day when I would fall out of love with the beautiful game - but i have. I won't be renewing my season ticket anymore, the hypocrites can't have my hard-earned anymore.''
06:46PM 17th Jan 2009
''Royston, if you have proof of this meeting please submit it. "Tapping up" is far more serious than infringing rules U18 and B13, and if it is true, then he would have broken the latter of those anyway. Rednapp has totally denied any such meeting, so we can add "pathalogical liar" to his other sins if it were true.
Thing about Bellamy, if he wasn't "tapped up", how does he know what Tottenham are offering? He's on £70K a week at West Ham - who lie in 10th and could be eighth by this time tomorrow - to join the team at the bottom of the league? For a wage drop? One thinks not!''
by Mark Nunnery
05:48PM 17th Jan 2009
''Good riddance, if the ungrateful git wants to go then let's get as much as possible for him, you can't make someone want to stay if they don't want to. If there's any justice he can sit in the dugout at Spuds week in, week out, and do the same next season in the Championship. ''
05:25PM 17th Jan 2009
''Very disappointing to hear, but what do expect from a selfish overpaid/rated person? You can't have a pig like that in the squad, it'll just shake up the rest of the players. Sorry Bellamy, you've only got yourself to blame.''
by WH Winegarden
05:21PM 17th Jan 2009
''Personally I would let him stew for a bit, put him in the reserves, and not pay him! Obviously if he is not fulfilling the duty he is CONTRACTED to then he is in breach of contract, and therefore West Ham should be able to withhold his wages.
Eventually he will have to leave though, as you cannot FORCE a player to play.
Personally I think the Sun and the other papers tapped him up, everyday they are reporting he is being sought by Man City and Tottenham, send him up north where he can sit on the bench for the rest of the season warming Robinho's seat!''
04:56PM 17th Jan 2009
''I'd be more than happy with a swap for Bent, with his age being my primary interest. Bellamy is good, good at best so I'm perfectly content with a swap plus cash (to us) deal for Bellamy.
Bellamy is also 29 (nearly 30) which leaves him, for a striker in the very old bracket. Along with his half-a-season attendance due to injury really how on earth could Bent be a worse option?
In Bent we would have a player of in my opinion near equal quality, many more years to play and an immediate replacement for our troubles in this our most recent saga. Bent would perhaps work far better alongside Cole, seeing as Bellamy simply refuses to adjust his game at all (another opinion, not fact as I don't get to games unfortunately) even though he has the attributes to suggest more versatility than Cole.
Let the Spuds hand us there money for an injury prone, strop prone, never has been never will be mug. Absolutely brilliantly turn of events in my eyes, ship him out, bring Bent in and allow Sears more game time (as and when suitable on a game by game basis) so we can see if his play has any suggestions of having what it takes.
Absolutely grinning as in my humble opinion if we scrape OR fly through this season, it's for the best. Totally besides the clear fact we'll never get anywhere near this amount once the crock reaches the big three oh.
P.S. Please stop whining and stating we're dead certs for relegation now, wake up and smell the Mary Jane. Bellamy simply is not anything special, merely slightly above average. As the man Cottee said just a few short weeks ago, Bellamy wouldn't cut the mustard at any of the clubs participating in more prestigious competitions. He is pretty easily replaceable, although it will decrease the squad's quality slightly for now, we've managed without that turncoat how often?''
02:59PM 17th Jan 2009
''We all know how unloyal he is anyway, all the clubs he's been to. If we get £15 million for an injury prone 30-year-old I will be happy. I just don't want him going to bloody Spurs!''
02:39PM 17th Jan 2009
''Underhand tactics from Redknapp, also done the same with Jones.''
02:30PM 17th Jan 2009
''Bellamy said when he signed in 2007: "I've had too many clubs, I'm here now for the long term." 26 games in 1 1/2 seasons - how long term was he thinking?''
by Nicky Hawkins
01:55PM 17th Jan 2009
''Let the whinging little git go to Tottenham. He's a scumbag who has no loyalty to anyone. His knees are buggered anyway - that's why I was against signing him in the first place!''
by Alex P
01:30PM 17th Jan 2009
''We're down lets face it!
We havent got the players we had when we went down before - I miss committed people like Tony Cottee, Frank McAvennie, Martin Allen, Alvin Martin, Stevie Potts, Julian Dicks and Paolo Di Canio to name a few. Football's changed, I'm not certain I can go anymore.
Bellamy going on strike - what an idiot! He won't get a look-in over at Tottenham - he aint a natural goalscorer like Defoe.
Bellamy doesnt deserve the gift to play Premier League football. West Ham saved him from becoming a nobody at Liverpool!''
01:23PM 17th Jan 2009
''Harry was talking to Bellamy on Thursday night in his penthouse apartment at the Marriot Hotel in Canary Wharf - but that isn't tapping up really, is it?
What a joke.''
12:40PM 17th Jan 2009
''Players sign contracts and should honour them, this is player power gone mad. Let him strike and if he refuses to play then the club should not pay his wages. Let him rot, see how long he keeps his strike going without any wages.
West Ham need to make a stand or we may be faced with losing all our best players. It's a mad world; people in the real world struggle to live at the moment and these spoilt brats just want more and more. MAKE A STAND WEST HAM AND SEND A STRONG MESSAGE OUT TO THE REST OF THE SQUAD!''
by ricky cox
12:17PM 17th Jan 2009
''This is exactly the thing that Spurs complained that Man Utd did to Berbatov and what Liverpool did to Keane!
Now that Bellamy is crying about this move we should just let him go and get the most out of it. I say we go for £15mill or getting £8mill and Darren Bent!''
by Borough Hammer
11:25AM 17th Jan 2009
''Let him go, there's no point keeping any player who doesn't want to play for our club. Eight clubs in nine years tells you something about Bellamy and his lack of loyalty anway.
Levy and Spuds are hypocrites as well, moaning about Berbatov being tapped up a few months ago and doing the same thing to one of our players. Its a joke, just like the Spuds.''
by Fat freddie foreskin
10:35AM 17th Jan 2009
''Let him go only when we've got a replacement. He's only said he wants to go to Spurs vis he knows it'll anger the fans. Let him rot in the reserves for a while then let him rot in the Championship next year with Spurs.''
10:13AM 17th Jan 2009
''Don't see how this is similar to Anton at all. It would seem he and McCartney were sold to either raise cash or force Curbs out or both. This would seem from all the media reports around it - detailed to the point of clearing locker, saying goodbye to staff etc. - that he has been tapped up. And that the club are unwilling to let him go.
You may be proved right but on the face of it, your assertion seems to fly in the face of the story reported by the Times, Telegraph and Mail.''
09:46AM 17th Jan 2009
''I'm gutted, just when he was starting to shine. Please go to Man City though, not the scum. Either way you're going to a side lower in the league where you won't start every match. A good career move... not.''
by mads hammers
09:19AM 17th Jan 2009
''Let's just hope and pray Spurs go down. Get lost Bellers you unloyal ass, thanks for nowt.''