Hughes rules out massive spend in future

Mark Hughes declared he would never again oversee the sort of mass changes that have swept through Manchester City in the past two trasfer windows.

Hughes has been by far the biggest summer spender, splashing out almost £120million on new players in a bid to strengthen his squad.

There had been talk of one last addition in the form of David Bentley, although a reunion with a player he helped develop at Blackburn was never high on the agenda, certainly not on a permanent basis as Tottenham hoped.

So, just as he pledged last week at the unveiling of Joleon Lescott and Sylvinho, Hughes resisted the temptation to bring out the chequebook once again.

With eight new faces, the City boss has enough on his hands trying to integrate them all into a squad expected to challenge strongly for a place in the top four.

The Blues have not done too badly so far, winning their opening three Premier League games and advancing into the last 32 of the Carling Cup.

However, Hughes realises such extensive surgery is not desirable, and, given the quality at the Welshman's disposal, neither will it be necessary in future.

"We won't be going into the market to this extent again," declared Hughes.

"There has been an unprecedented change in personnel.

"It was basically a process that should have been done over a three-to-five-year period but we have tried to make it happen in two windows.

"In future we will be looking to acquire players that will add value to the club and become great players at Manchester City rather than going out to the market and paying a premium because we need the players now."

Hughes revealed his rebuilding plans were hatched at a meeting with owner Sheikh Mansour and chairman Khaldoon al-Mubarak in Abu Dhabi last December.

By that time it had become clear the City squad just was not durable enough for the demands now being placed upon it, so Hughes received the green light to make the necessary changes.

High-profile targets did prove elusive as both Kaka and John Terry ultimately rejected advances from Eastlands.

However, the squad Hughes now has at his disposal is certainly one of the most extensive in England, packed with experience and quality.

"The vast majority of the team is in my design," he said.

"Someone put a graphic on TV the other day which showed all the positions in the team filled with my signings.

"We are in good shape now, as we have bought well, and are in a better position than we were 12 months ago."

It could also be argued that now there can be no excuses.

Victories over Blackburn, Wolves and Burnley may have maintained the feel-good factor around City generated by the wave of additions, notably Emmanuel Adebayor and Carlos Tevez, whose status as a man that rejected life at United means he is now a cult hero at his new home.

It will be matches immediately after the international break against Arsenal and Sir Alex Ferguson's side at Old Trafford that will provide a pointer to the progress City have made, and how much needs to be done over the coming nine months.

For Hughes, the man presented with an opportunity few, even in the top four, are afforded, it is a challenge to relish.

"It has been a really exciting time and there has been a huge amount of interest in what we have been doing," he said.

"That can be a bad thing but it can also be stimulating.

"We have all enjoyed the attention. It raises expectation but we have had that for nine months now.

"It is not something that fazes us. We are enjoying being where we are."

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

On your feet! Spending at least two hours a day standing reduces the risk of heart attacks, cancer and diabetes, according to new research

On your feet!

Spending half the day standing 'reduces risk of heart attacks and cancer'
Liverpool close in on Milner signing

Liverpool close in on Milner signing

Reds baulk at Christian Benteke £32.5m release clause
With scores of surgeries closing, what hope is there for the David Cameron's promise of 5,000 more GPs and a 24/7 NHS?

The big NHS question

Why are there so few new GPs when so many want to study medicine?
Big knickers are back: Thongs ain't what they used to be

Thongs ain't what they used to be

Big knickers are back
Thurston Moore interview

Thurston Moore interview

On living in London, Sonic Youth and musical memoirs
In full bloom

In full bloom

Floral print womenswear
From leading man to Elephant Man, Bradley Cooper is terrific

From leading man to Elephant Man

Bradley Cooper is terrific
In this the person to restore our trust in the banks?

In this the person to restore our trust in the banks?

Dame Colette Bowe - interview
When do the creative juices dry up?

When do the creative juices dry up?

David Lodge thinks he knows
The 'Cher moment' happening across fashion just now

Fashion's Cher moment

Ageing beauty will always be more classy than all that booty
Thousands of teenage girls enduring debilitating illnesses after routine school cancer vaccination

Health fears over school cancer jab

Shock new Freedom of Information figures show how thousands of girls have suffered serious symptoms after routine HPV injection
Fifa President Sepp Blatter warns his opponents: 'I forgive everyone, but I don't forget'

'I forgive everyone, but I don't forget'

Fifa president Sepp Blatter issues defiant warning to opponents
Extreme summer temperatures will soon cause deaths of up to 1,700 more Britons a year, says government report

Weather warning

Extreme summer temperatures will soon cause deaths of up to 1,700 more Britons a year, says government report
LSD: Speaking to volunteer users of the drug as trials get underway to see if it cures depression and addiction

High hopes for LSD

Meet the volunteer users helping to see if it cures depression and addiction
German soldier who died fighting for UK in Battle of Waterloo should be removed from museum display and given dignified funeral, say historians

Saving Private Brandt

A Belgian museum's display of the skeleton of a soldier killed at Waterloo prompts calls for him to be given a dignified funeral