Bellamy hits out at Mancini's training regime
Craig Bellamy has added to the criticism of Roberto Mancini at Manchester City by claiming it was impossible for him to succeed under the Italian’s training regime at Eastlands.
Mancini, who clashed with captain Carlos Tevez during the half-time interval of Sunday’s 2-1 home win against Newcastle, has struggled to impose his demanding training methods on the City squad since replacing the sacked Mark Hughes last December.
A key bone of contention among the players has been Manchester City manager Mancini’s insistence on a double training session at least once a week, with Tevez and Bellamy being vocal critics of the approach.
And Bellamy, speaking to BBC Radio Five Live, claims that assurances about being allowed to continue his personalised training regime under Mancini proved worthless once the former Inter Milan coach settled into his role at Eastlands.
Bellamy said: “We all have different training methods and I would sometimes struggle to do the double sessions.
“I am a fast twitch fibre type of player and history shows that with those kinds of players, double sessions don’t work.
“For certain players, you have to realise they can’t work the same way as others. My history with my knee shows that. I can do those double sessions if you want. No problem. But you won’t see me on Saturday. You won’t see me all season.
“The first thing I was assured after the change of manager [at City] was that they wouldn’t alter my routine, my programme. My knee felt great and I was flying.
“Garry Cook [chief executive], Brian Marwood [football administrator] and even [chairman] Khaldoon al-Mubarak all spoke to me and said that nothing would change.
“That was my concern. I didn’t want to be injured again, but then a few months down the line, the manager tried to change it. I didn’t know what he was talking about.
“He [Mancini] is doing it his own way now and he only ever wanted to do it his own way. It’s not a problem for me.
“I am 31 and the main thing for me is to stay injury free. I have my own people here and I have a guy from Holland [fitness coach Raymond Verheijen] who I pay for. That comes from my wages.
“If I can’t play then what can I do? If someone says something about me in the week then I can’t go out and prove them wrong if I am not playing can I?”
Bellamy vied with Tevez and Shay Given as City’s Player of the Year last season, but the former Norwich, Coventry, Newcastle, Celtic, Blackburn, Liverpool and West Ham forward insists he is not surprised by any lack of loyalty shown towards him by City.
He said: “There is no loyalty in football. The only loyal ones are the fans who come and pay money to watch you play. How can I go from having a really good year one year and then the next be told to train with the kids?
“You are not allowed to improve yourself, you are not allowed to go to a good team, but you have to go and train with the kids.
‘You are not part of our squad because we want you out. We will swap you with Dzeko at Wolfsburg if you like but if you don’t want that then you can come back and train with the kids again.’
"I got asked to go the Academy [at City] and train with the kids in a totally different part of Manchester. Is that loyalty for my performances last year? Of course it isn’t. Between the players and the clubs - whoever is running them - there is no loyalty.”
Although Manchester United dismissed out of hand suggestions that they were interested in signing Bellamy in August, the player claims that he could have sealed a move that would have surprised the world of football.
He said: “Garry Cook said he had more phone calls than he had ever had about one player and that I should take it as a compliment.
“I said that I would but it was ironic that everybody wanted me apart from the club I was already at.
“Someone else came in which would have caused a few stirs. If I had said I wanted to go there for one minute, my life in Manchester would have been really tough.
“I aint gonna say anything but it would have been tough. It would have been a miracle had it come off.
“I sat down with my agent and tried to work out whether to hold out for that one or go home. Because of the other club being interested, City panicked and pushed the Cardiff thing through as quickly as possible.”