ALTHOUGH Connor Wickham will have been high in Dave Jones’ thoughts this week, one of his loan players of old will have come under his scrutiny amid preparations for Cardiff’s visit.
For Craig Bellamy is among the threats that the Wednesday manager will attempt to subdue.
The Welsh star played in the Bluebirds’ 1-0 win against the Owls in December.
Wednesday’s defensive diligence made life awkward for Bellamy and fellow striker Heidar Helguson.
Tomorrow Bellamy could play out wide or down the middle - with a switch to 4-5-1 among the options for manager Malky Mackay as he seeks a first win in four games.
The central striker role could go to Fraizer Campbell, who has scored five goals since his £650,000 transfer from Sunderland in January. Bellamy has netted only four times this season - his last goal was in a 1-0 win at Leicester in December, part of the winning run that included the victory against the Owls.
But the 33-year-old remains a threat and is vastly experienced.
He joined Cardiff on a free from Liverpool last summer to begin his second spell in the city of his birth.
Jones signed him for the Bluebirds on loan from Manchester City in 2010 and says in his autobiography that he landed him under the noses of clubs such as Everton and Spurs. Some in the game questioned the fairness of a Championship club signing someone who was then a high-profile Premier League player
Bellamy lived in the same area in Wales as Jones and asked to play for Cardiff. Says Jones in his book: “I told him if he was serious, I’d try to get it done but when I spoke to the chairman and everyone else they thought it was pie in the sky and I don’t actually blame them.
“There was no way we could afford Craig, so with the help of my agent and Craig’s agent, we came up with a plan.
“What we got him for was ridiculous, with Man City paying part of his wages.
“Then every other chairman started kicking off and saying how unfair it all was, but all we’d done was...to use the loan system. The only difference was that we had a acquired a Premier League star.
“So what if he was a Man City player? Most clubs from the Championship who take players from the Premier League don’t pay the full wages.
“It’s the same throughout the leagues. When I loaned players to clubs below Cardiff, do you think they paid the full wages?
“But because it was Craig Bellamy, everybody threw the book at the situation. We’d done absolutely nothing wrong. Then system is only flawed if you flout it but we weren’t doing that. We were using it, yes, but not flouting it.”
Bellamy spent all of the 2010-11 season on loan at Cardiff. He went to back to Manchester and then moved to Liverpool.
He began his career as a youngster at Norwich and moves totalling £44m took him to Coventry, Newcastle, Blackburn, Liverpool, West Ham and Manchester City, before his return to Anfield on a free.
The pacy forward has also made more than 90 appearances for Wales, including two this season.