Craig Bellamy named in Wales squad

 

Craig Bellamy has been included in the Wales squad for the Gary Speed Memorial match against Costa Rica, a game that could be his last at international level.

The Liverpool striker was persuaded to prolong his Wales career by Speed, and was devastated when the late manager died in November.

New manager Chris Coleman has expressed his desire for Bellamy to play on into the 2014 World Cup qualifying campaign, but the 67-cap forward has already stated that next week's fixture could be his last in a Wales shirt.

The squad, picked by Coleman and Speed's assistants Osian Roberts and Raymond Verheijen, is, as expected, drawn from the group who helped Wales win four of their last five games under Speed.

However, there is a recall for Bolton full-back Sam Ricketts, who returns after a lengthy spell out through injury.

Robert Earnshaw is also included in the 24-man squad despite finding first-team opportunities limited at Cardiff City.

There is a place on the standby list, and in the Under-21 squad, for Blackburn's Adam Henley.

The 17-year-old full-back made a big impression when thrown in at the deep end against Liverpool and Manchester United.

Henley, who is also eligible to represent the USA and England, had recently said he planned to keep his options open before committing himself to a nation.

The FAW have also revealed that a number of Welsh artists will perform prior to next Wednesday's fixture in tribute to Speed, with the opponents being the side against whom the former midfielder won his first cap.

PA

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