Whiner's strike

  • by Staff Writer
  • Saturday, 17th January 2009

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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