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 Posted by ESPN Staff
Sep 24, 2006

Bellamy: Magpies want me to be a flop

Craig Bellamy believes there are people at Newcastle United who do not want him to be successful at Liverpool.

The Wales striker was branded an 'upstart' by Newcastle coach Terry McDermott - himself a former Liverpool star - after the midweek clash between the clubs.

The pair were involved in a tunnel row after Liverpool's 2-0 victory on Wednesday.

And after Liverpool moved up to sixth place in the Premier League on Saturday with another fine home win - this time over struggling Tottenham - Bellamy revealed he feared 'something would happen' when he came up against Newcastle again after his acrimonious departure from Tyneside a year ago.

Bellamy has had support from Liverpool boss Rafael Benitez over the showdown with McDermott, and again after the Spurs game when he had failed to score for the eighth game in succession.

Benitez said: 'I have talked to Craig and as long as he is running hard and moving, and doing his job well, it's fine by me. He will have my backing.'

Bellamy talked of his desire to do well for his new club, but believes Newcastle are 'hurt' by his arrival at Anfield.

Bellamy said: 'The circus was in town on Wednesday. There was always going to be something from them (Newcastle), but it doesn't bother me. Not at all.

'I was half expecting something because I know they are hurting, my being at Liverpool is hurting them.

'This is the club I have always wanted to play for and maybe there are people who are not too happy about that.

'I'm sure there are people there (at Newcastle) who don't want me to succeed here, because it reminds them every time.

'It was a ridiculously cheap fee I went to Blackburn for, it's not nice for me to be remembered for that. What was it, about £3.75million? That hurts. I know that, but that is the game we play.'

Bellamy had fallen out with former Newcastle boss Graeme Souness and spent six months on loan to Celtic before what he clearly believes was a cut-price move to Blackburn ahead of his summer transfer to Liverpool.

Now he wants to repay Benitez and impress his new fans, even if goals are eluding him.

He forced Paul Robinson into one excellent save and even hit a post from a couple of yards before Mark Gonzalez rammed home the rebound to put Liverpool on their way to an emphatic win.

Bellamy's strike partner Dirk Kuyt grabbed his second of the week before John Arne Riise's piledriver in the final minute.

Bellamy underlined how anxious he is to get on the goal trail, admitting: 'That's the way it is at the moment, the ball keeps going the other side of the post or hitting it. It happens, but I have had times like this in my career before.

'I am maybe too excited to score. You want to do so well and you are snatching at chances, and when you do that as a forward you find the chances slip away.

'In some ways it is different for me. It`s the club I supported and there is an extra determination to do well.

'I'm putting extra pressure on myself, but then I always do that, it is how I play football. I demand high standards of myself and I don't worry about missing chances.

'But the one thing I don't like is when anxiety creeps in and it affects my game a bit. That's something I can't handle.

'Probably that is how it is at the moment. Okay, the people around me are scoring and I feel the rest of my game is going all right, making runs, helping create chances for others.

'But at a club like this you are judged on goals, and that is one thing you want to achieve. But at that's life, I have to keep going.

'The chances will come at a club like this because there are such good players around who will create them. I am still enjoying it all.'

Spurs boss Martin Jol is not enjoying life at the moment, though. He watched Jermaine Jenas miss a sitter before Liverpool took the lead minutes later - and that said everything about the north Londoners` worrying display.

He said: 'Of course Jermaine should have scored, but it is one of those things. We created a lot of chances, should have been ahead before they scored, and then lost our concentration and composure in defence.

'We just didn't keep our heads at the right time. In that first half we could have been ahead.

'Then in the second period Jenas misses. Yes, he should have scored and it should have been a goal, but it is a familiar story for us at the moment.'

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