With a talent the likes of Craig Bellamy supposedly prepared to switch to Championship side Cardiff, have his options been cut short by the powers that be at Eastlands?
The controversial Welshman was on many a Premier League shopping list but it is believed that a move to a top side has been cut off due to their rival status. European contenders such as Tottenham, Aston Villa and Everton have all been credited with an interest in the striker but transfers have been deemed as unlikely due to unwelcome competition.
It is evident that Mancini believes that Bellamy is just the sort of player who could come back to haunt City’s Champions League, and even title hopes.
Who can blame the Italian for not wanting to see a quality player, whom many believe was City’s top performer last term, join a positional rival and dent the clubs chances of success. A move to Neil Lennon’s Celtic looked likely for these reasons as well as the fact that Bellamy has already enjoyed a spell with the Scottish giants.
During his time in Glasgow, Bellamy netted 9 times in a six month spell that saw him become a fan’s favorite at Celtic Park. A permanent move was touted before a return to the Premier League with Mark Hughes’ Blackburn materialized.
A reunion with his former Blackburn and Wales boss, also looked on the cards with interest from Hughes’ new club Fulham, being seen as favorable to City as the club are not seen as rivals despite a glorious Europa League run last campaign. Then came the news that Cardiff were looking to make the notorious bad boy a major coup for the Welsh side.
Obvious ties to the club made an otherwise impossible proposal, possible. Bellamy is Cardiff born and bread and the notion of playing for your boyhood club would appeal to any fan and it is now thought to be imminent that the 31 year old will join the Bluebirds on a loan deal.
The news will come as a massive boost for the Cardiff fans who have seen former captain Joe Ledley join Celtic as well as unwanted interest in their other top performers. Speculation even surrounded manager, Dave Jones’ position at the club but the proposed deal for Bellamy will see the title contenders credentials boosted greatly and many will now expect them to be pushing favorites Middlesborough all the way in the title race.
The question remains that, although City were within their rights to halt a move to a bigger club, is this fair on a player who should undoubtedly be playing at the highest level of English football?