Toshack's relief at return of striking star Bellamy

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Date: Nov. 16, 2005
Publisher: MGN Ltd.
Document Type: Brief article
Length: 346 words

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Wales manager John Toshack sees the return of Craig Bellamy after a seven-month absence as key to the future of the national side.

Toshack has had a difficult time since taking over from Mark Hughes a year ago and Bellamy's return for tonight's friendly in Cyprus is much welcomed.

Toshack has a shrinking pool of experience which he has regularly had to supplement with willing, but raw, youngsters.

And he will hand out the 11th new cap of his reign in the Tsirion Stadium when Ipswich's 21 year-old goalkeeper Lewis Price steps up from the Under-21s.

'Craig has missed the last five matches so we are pleased he is back,' Toshack said.

'His commitment to the cause has never been doubted but he has had problems with maintaining a level of fitness over a period of time. He is obviously an important player for us and we are happy to have him back, but it is unfortunate that it comes when Ryan Giggs is out with a fractured cheekbone.

'Those two together are vital to us, along with Simon Davies, and he's not here either because of his hamstring injury.

'That is the way it has been since I started.

'But from my first game against Hungary we have a lot more players. We lost so many and only had four on the bench that night and we were running round not knowing what to do.

'In 12 months I do feel that, regardless of all the continued absentees and retirements, we have managed to find a lot more players for the squad.

'I feel a lot happier now then when I did before. We have a lot more now than we had then.'

There is no denying the lift the return of Blackburn striker Bellamy after knee trouble has had on the squad.

Toshack added: 'Craig is important for us, no question. He's always keen when he's here, sometimes you have to slow him down because he is always busy and buzzing.

'But hopefully now he will stay fitter over a longer period of time.

Source Citation

Source Citation   (MLA 8th Edition)
"Toshack's relief at return of striking star Bellamy." South Wales Echo [Cardiff, Wales], 16 Nov. 2005, p. 54. Gale OneFile: News, Accessed 19 Nov. 2019.

Gale Document Number: GALE|A138792730