Hughes steps up City player search

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The Independent Online

Mark Hughes will intensify his search for new players this week in an attempt to bring the feel-good factor back to Manchester City.

Hughes wasted no time in luring England defender Wayne Bridge north from Chelsea but in the wake of Saturday's FA Cup debacle against Nottingham Forest, City have yet to make any further additions to their squad.

Roque Santa Cruz, Shay Given, Kolo Toure, Craig Bellamy and Scott Parker have been heavily linked with the Eastlands outfit, who badly need a lift.

And Hughes is keen to bring in additional reinforcements quickly.

"I am sure we will be making more offers this week," Hughes told the Manchester Evening News.

"It is about getting the balance and the pitch of the offer right. If you do that, more often than not a deal can be concluded quickly.

"Long drawn-out deals tend to test everyone's patience so it is better to look at the market, look at what you think the club that has the player would want and go in at that level."

Hughes has handed his list of preferred signings to executive chairman Garry Cook, who has already pledged his backing for the Welshman even though a large number of fans voiced their displeasure at his management on Saturday.

Owner Sheikh Mansour has consistently preached a need to adopt a pragmatic approach to the new riches he has brought to Eastlands and appears willing to give Hughes time to build a squad he feels is robust enough to challenge on all fronts.

However, it seems City's owners do want a little bit of stardust sprinkling on Hughes' squad.

Cook has been tasked with the job of bringing in a 'galactico' during the transfer window, with world player of the year Kaka remaining top of the list.

Whether the Brazilian can be persuaded to leave AC Milan for Manchester remains to be seen although, as has been proved with Robinho, the biggest names are no guarantee of success anyway.

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