Hughes calls for patience

06 February 2009 02:06
Manchester City manager Mark Hughes has warned fans that they won't see the best of his side until next season.

The former Blackburn boss brought in four new additions in January with Shay Given, Wayne Bridge, Nigel de Jong and Craig Bellamy joining the club.

City's new boys, with the exception of Given who is yet to make his debut, failed to improve the team's fortunes on the pitch as they succumbed 1-0 to struggling Stoke last week.

The result was made even worse by the fact that the Potters had to play the majority of the game with ten men after Rory Delap was sent-off in the 38th minute.

Of the team that started against Stoke, seven were in their first season with the club as Hughes' side have undergone a major facelift since the days of predecessor Sven Goran Eriksson just eight months ago.

"People don't understand how much of a change has been undertaken here," he said.

"The altercations we have made on and off the field have been vast. Certainly I am confident about the impact they will have and I am looking for a strong second half to the season.

Patience"But in addition, the way we do our work on a daily basis will have a positive impact going into next season."

City welcome relegation threatened Middlesbrough to Eastlands on Saturday with just six points separating the two teams and Hughes is expecting a defensive approach from the visitors.

"It won't be easy because Middlesbrough do get people behind the ball," he highlighted.

"We will have to be patient in the way we approach it and make sure we are able to break them down when we can.

"Obviously that is something we found difficult to do last weekend and we need to be better.

"Middlesbrough are a young side, well organised side with lots of enthusiasm. They started the season quite brightly but injuries have affected them and now they are in a run of disappointing results.

"We have been highlighting things we feel will enable us to make a better fist of it, just in case they do bring everyone behind the ball."

Source: SKY_Sports