New Manchester City boss Roberto Mancini insists Craig Bellamy is his "friend" despite dropping the Welsh striker out of his first starting line-up on Saturday. Bellamy was introduced as a second-half substitute at Eastlands as City recorded a 2-0 win over Stoke in their first game since Mancini controversially replaced the sacked Mark Hughes.

"Bellamy is my friend," said Mancini.

"There is no problem. I spoke with him two days ago. He understood when I told him he wasn't starting.

"We have two games in three days and I need all the players at 100%. Today we played Robinho. It is possible we will play Craig at Wolves on Monday."

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