The news of Craig Bellamy's retirement on Thursday drew a wealth of heartfelt messages of appreciation for the former Liverpool forward from the supporters he used to represent.

After almost two decades as a professional footballer, the driven Welshman called time on his lengthy and nomadic career, which included separate, single-season spells with the Reds.

A versatile forward, who possessed a high-speed football brain, blistering fleet of foot and supreme game intelligence, Bellamy found the net 18 times in 79 matches for the club he supports.

His passion for Liverpool was abundantly clear back in March, as he prepared to face his former employers with hometown side Cardiff City in a crucial Barclays Premier League encounter.

While strictly dedicated to the cause of trying to keep the Bluebirds in the division, during an exclusive pre-match interview with, he revealed why the Reds are in his heart.

"I'm proud of the club I support, I really am," said Bellamy, who was part of the team that lifted the Carling Cup under Kenny Dalglish in February 2012.

"A lot of my beliefs in football and life are what Bill Shankly led, how he conducted the club and changed the club. He was years ahead of his time.

"The way Liverpool run and how they are as a football club - the professionalism, how they look to the fans and how they treat people - is something I'm really proud to be associated with. I'm proud to support them."

To pay your own personal tribute to Bellamy, leave a comment in the section at the bottom of this page, or tweet using the hashtag #ThanksCraig.