Hughton ready for challenge
Manager Chris Hughton is under no illusions about the challenge he faces as he bids to guide Birmingham straight back to the Premier League. The 52-year-old, who guided Newcastle to the top flight before being unexpectedly sacked midway through last season, took the reins at St Andrew's in the wake of Alex McLeish's move to rivals Aston Vila. Asked whether he was confident of taking Blues back up at the first attempt, Hughton said: "I hope so. All I can do is work as hard as I can over what will be a very difficult season. "There are so many good teams now, so many teams that will be striving to get out, as the teams showed last season. So we'll do everything we can do to put enough things in place to give us a good enough opportunity to be able to do that. "For me it's about a group of players showing a real desire to want to go back up into the Premier League at the first go and show that appropriately on the football pitch."
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