Cardiff Under-18s coach Craig Bellamy has “categorically” denied a claim of bullying and has vowed to clear his name.
Earlier this week, the Daily Mail reported that the parents of a young English footballer have complained to the Premier League outfit about Bellamy’s behaviour towards their son, who has since left the club.
Cardiff announced on Wednesday they were investigating the matter.
And in a statement released to Press Association Sport, the former Wales captain confirmed he has stepped down from his position while the investigation takes place.
He said: “I am aware of allegations that have been made against me via the media.
“I understand the need for Cardiff City to undertake a full investigation in response to these allegations and – at my own suggestion – I have temporarily removed myself from my coaching position in order to cooperate fully with the club’s inquiry.
“Obviously, I am saddened both by the allegations and the manner in which they were made and I categorically refute them.
“I fully expect to return to my coaching role and have sought legal advice as to my position.”
The 39-year-old added that he will be making no further comment until the investigation, which is being led by Cardiff chief executive Ken Choo, has concluded.
A regular pundit on Sky Sports, Bellamy scored 19 goals in 78 games for Wales and also had successful club stints with Liverpool, Manchester City and Newcastle. He finished his career in 2014 at hometown club Cardiff, where he was a key figure in their promotion to the Premier League in 2013.