Given backing for Bellamy

07 October 2009 09:32
// A bit of a hack but it works// The article snippet is wrapped onto a second line, even when #article-sub is emptyif( $("div#article-sub").children().length == 0 ) {$("div#article-sub").remove();} Shay Given feels Craig Bellamy is as valuable to Manchester City as any of their big summer signings.

The Welsh striker's future at Eastlands was cast into doubt ahead of the 2009/10 campaign after City splashed out on Carlos Tevez, Emmanuel Adebayor and Roque Santa Cruz.

However, with Santa Cruz only just returning from injury and Adebayor recently serving a suspension, Bellamy has come to the fore.

He grabbed his fourth goal of the season against Aston Villa on Monday, to earn City a point, and has earned high praise for the manner in which he has gone about forcing his way into Mark Hughes' plans.

City goalkeeper Given is just one of those to have been impressed by Bellamy's attitude this term, although he does admit that the temperamental frontman is still partial to the odd moan.

"He is a very valuable player to us and his work-rate is phenomenal," the Irish shot-stopper said.

"The ProZone stats show he is right up there with running, distance covered and sprints - he works his socks off and he's popped up with some great goals.

Winner"Does he ever stop moaning? He has his moments, but not very often. He probably moans in his sleep too, but that's the way he is.

"He is a fiery little guy and he demands the best out of the players around him because he is a winner and he wants the people out there with him to be the same."

Blues boss Hughes has also lauded the efforts of his much-maligned striker, claiming Bellamy is 'playing out of his skim' at present.

"He always thinks he is the best player out there, irrespective of who else is on the pitch him - and for most of our games this season, he has probably been right," he said.

"He has seen the quality of all these guys coming into the team and he's used it as a challenge - and the response has been fantastic.

"I'm pleased for Craig because he has been criticised in the past, and rightly so at times, but he is doing outstandingly well whether we play him down the middle, wide left, wide right or sitting deep."

Source: SKY_Sports