Reuters Photo/A rift in the City Dressing Room?
Rumors have been abound for sometime that Mark Hughes distinctly British and disciplinarian managerial style does not sit well with City’s Brazilian contingent. Similarly rumors have begun to circulate in the past week that Craig Bellamy who trouble seems to follow has created a rift in City’s changing room with Robinho, the British record transfer signing.
During the January transfer window Jo was loaned to Everton (and will be sold this summer) and Elano was shopped around. Some transfer rumors claimed Robinho could be on his way out as well heading to Chelsea to join his former National Team boss Luiz Felipe Scolari.
The sacking of Scolari likely means if Robinho is going to leave City this summer he’ll head back to Spain or to Italy.So long as Hughes remains in control it’s tough to see Robinho working out at the club. Part of the reason is the January transfer of Craig Bellamy, long a Hughes favorite and a controversial talisman himself. Bellamy seems to always save his best for when he is being managed by Hughes: be it with Wales, Blackburn or now City.
Bellamy has long been the poster child for bad behavior among British Footballers. The Welsh International, captains his national side but is better known for his antics on and off the pitch. While featuring for Newcastle, during the 2003-2004 UEFA Champions League he kicked Inter’s Marco Materazzi (Although given the Italians antics perhaps he deserved it) and later that season threw a chair in training at John Carver then Bobby Robson’s #2 at Newcastle. I actually attempted to speak to Carver who now manages in MLS about this incident and got a cold stare and no answer, probably meaning it is still a sore subject for him.
Bellamy’s bad behavior continued after he left Newcastle: He allegedly sent nasty emails taunting Toon and England legend Alan Shearer after Bellamy had been loaned to Celtic. After being transferred to Liverpool he attacked John Arne Riise at a training session an incident which was ironically knocked out of the tabloid headlines by Joey Barton’s incident with a Liverpool cab driver a week later.
Robinho has his own personal off the pitch incidents to contend with. He has been accused of sexual assault in a Leeds Nightclub and when it seemed he may just be reunited with Scolari during the January window, he left the club and flew back to Brazil.
For the record Bellamy is backing Robinho and claims no rift has occurred in the City dressing room. But given Bellamy’s history, Hughes relationship with him and the discontent of City’s Brazilian contingent, can we really believe him?
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