Newcastle sign Faye as Bellamy admits 'I'm out of here'

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The Independent Football

It is absolutely typical of Newcastle United that a day that saw them sign a player who might provide their midfield with some much-needed solidity was entirely overshadowed by a man who will probably never kick a ball for them again.

It is absolutely typical of Newcastle United that a day that saw them sign a player who might provide their midfield with some much-needed solidity was entirely overshadowed by a man who will probably never kick a ball for them again.

Unlike Celestine Babayaro and Jean-Alain Boumsong - Graeme Souness's other January signings - Amdy Faye, who joined from Portsmouth on a four-year contract for a fee of £2m, will not have to endure being told by Craig Bellamy that he is at "a rubbish club with a rubbish manager".

Yesterday, Bellamy braved a barrage of media interest at the gates of Newcastle's training ground at Darsley Park to deliver the words that ensured he will never again appear in a black-and-white shirt. "I won't apologise because I have done nothing wrong," he told the Newcastle Evening Chronicle, Tyneside's most influential newspaper. "There is no doubt about it, I'm out of here."

He was not looking forward to training, which was conducted alone and in the club gymnasium, because he added: "I know I am not wanted." His agent, Steve Horner, while accepting that Bellamy's position after twice attacking his manager, Graeme Souness, on television was probably irrecoverable, thought that an abject apology might just keep him at St James' Park.

Kieron Dyer had delivered something similar following a refusal to play out of position under Sir Bobby Robson. Those hopes have been ground into the dirt, although a poll conducted by the Evening Chronicle found that Bellamy enjoyed rather greater support among Newcastle fans than his manager.

Bellamy was not put on the transfer list, although these days that does not mean Newcastle wish him to stay, but was fined two weeks' wages, around £80,000, while the verbal assaults on him continued from the club's management, which has accused the striker of feigning injury three times this season.

The Newcastle chairman, Freddy Shepherd, stated that had Bellamy not appeared on Sky Sports News on Monday, accusing Souness of attempting to turn the fans against him, his position might have been salvaged.

"Craig Bellamy was a fool to go on television," Shepherd said. "We told him not to do it and, as far as we are aware, his agent told him not to do it. Before yesterday afternoon, there would have been no public action taken against Craig Bellamy and everything was going to be handled internally. But like a fool he went on television and took on the whole club. There is no way I can accept that."

Responding to Bellamy's allegation that Souness had claimed at Highbury that the striker was injured when he was in fact dropped, the Newcastle manager replied: "I would have no future here if I let any player decide when he was or was not going to play. We had a meeting on Friday afternoon and agreed to keep a lid on it in the best interests of the club.

"By saying he was injured when I was interviewed before the game at Arsenal, I was trying to protect him. He is a fool if he cannot see that, just as he was a fool for going on television."

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