CRAIG Bellamy refused to be say when asked directly whether he was in the running to be Oxford United's next manager.

Speaking on Sky TV's 'The Debate' last night, the bookies' favourite to replace Pep Clotet was questioned on whether he had held talks with the U's and if he was interested in the role.

The former Wales international admitted he would be open to any management job with a club that 'had good owners who would give you time', but stopped short of saying if that club could be United.

"It's no secret that I have always wanted to become a manager," he said.

"It doesn't bother me what league. I have always been conscious of the fact I want it to be a good football club with good owners, someone that is going to back you and give you time.

"If I felt confident that was the case I would definitely jump at it."

He added: "I'll tell you when I know, so I have got nothing to tell you now."

Bellamy just missed out on the Wales job, and the Oxford Mail understands he has spoken to the U's board about the vacant role.

Bellamy went on to explain the criteria he would look for in a club, if he were to go in as manager.

"I want to create an identity and I want it to mean something," he said.

"I am prepared to work 24 hours a day and give it everything to be the best that I can be. But I want the club to want to be that way as well.

"Of course doing well at a football club is important and that's what you get looked at.

"But it's what you leave. Not just the position but is there a structure in place because a football club is more important than me.

"Hopefully that club has short-term success, but also has five or ten years success on the back of what you were able to do. That for me counts if you've been successful or not.

When asked directly if he wanted to reveal whether there had been contact with Oxford United, Bellamy replied: "I don't want to tell you that."