Liverpool manager Kenny Dalglish praised Craig Bellamy after the Wales forward inspired Tuesday's 2-0 Carling Cup quarter-final victory over Chelsea.

In mourning: Liverpool forward Craig Bellamy. Pic/Getty Images

Bellamy returned to action little more than 48 hours after being withdrawn from the squad for Sunday's clash with Manchester City on passionate grounds.

The 32-year-old was mourning the loss of friend Gary Speed and stood with his head bowed during the minute's applause held at Stamford Bridge in remembrance of the Wales manager.

In the second half Bellamy came alive, setting up goals for Maxi Rodriguez and Martin Kelly as Chelsea were swept aside. "Craig is a fantastic footballer who had a hugely disappointing day on Sunday. He regarded Gary Speed as a mentor," said Dalglish.

"It was great for the wee man, making the first goal. For the second he took the free-kick. He told Martin to leave it, it was going in!

"I don't know if we took Chelsea apart but we were delighted with the way we played. We've had a good day and we deserved to go through."