No let up in Bellamy dispute

Last updated : 05 September 2003 By Martyn Elliott

Sir Bobby believes with good reason that he is in the right in not wanting Bellamy to play because of his recent injury problems, while Wales boss Mark Hughes with equal justification believes he should play.

Bellamy himself is just pleased he is fit again and wants to get on with the task of playing in the biggest international game of his career and coming back to St James’ Park and playing for us.

He told BBC Wales: "It's up to the manager (Hughes), but yes (I could start) I am in good enough condition, no doubt about that. I've been trying really hard in my rehabilitation work. I had fallen behind with that work, which is why I had problems, but my knee is fine at the moment."

Manchester United winger Ryan Giggs, who has missed more internationals than most at his club’s request, has also had his say and has been a little more diplomatic than most.

"This is a difficult call to make and I understand that Newcastle United pay Craig's wages,” he said.

"But he is fit and wants to play tomorrow. This is one of the biggest games Wales has had for years and Craig has a passion to play for his country.

"And the performances he has put in for Wales in our last two games really have been unbelievable."

Hopefully Bellamy will take a full part in a Wales victory before coming back and doing the same thing for us at Everton, if not everyone will have lost out in this dispute.

You can’t blame Sir Bobby or Hughes for their standpoint on this one, because the rules are wrong. It’s about time FIFA recognised that the clubs who invest such huge sums in training, transfer fees and wages deserve to have a major say in the availability of their players for internationals.

**No marks at all to the Daily Mirror for rehashing some quotes from an interview Bellamy gave to FHM weeks ago and using them to say this current dispute wouldn’t effect his relationship with Sir Bobby.