Bellamy surrenders armband

Striker stands down as national skipper

Bellamy: Time for a change

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Craig Bellamy has stood down as Wales captain as he cannot guarantee regular involvement in the side.

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"I'm not going to be able to play every game for Wales so I feel it would be best to give the armband to someone who will be there for every game."

Craig Bellamy

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The 31-year-old striker, who is currently on loan at Cardiff from Manchester City, has held the honour of leading his country since being handed the armband by John Toshack in October 2006.

He is prepared to pass the opportunity to somebody else, though, as he knows he must rein in his international commitments.

With niggling knee problems having frustrated him over recent years, Bellamy feels the time is right to step aside as Wales skipper.

He revealed his decision on Boxing Day, shortly after notching Cardiff's second in their 2-0 victory over Coventry City.

"I've made Gary (Speed) aware of my decision," he said.

"I'm not going to be able to play every game for Wales so I feel it would be best to give the armband to someone who will be there for every game.

Honour

"I feel, with the young squad we have, it would be best.

"Being captain of Wales was great. It's a huge honour. I will get right behind the next person who does it.

"I've always said I'll never retire but I have to be clever about which games I play and which games I can't."

Bellamy added: "I was very fortunate because I watched Gary as a captain, I watched him turn up for every game and lead from the front.

"I'm not going to be able to play every game, it's not going to be possible. I said this to John Toshack, it's no secret.

"Being captain is a great honour but it isn't the reason I turn up for Wales or not. Putting on that Welsh jersey has always meant as much to me."