Hughes - No 'Fracture' At City
Manchester City boss Mark Hughes claims any perception of a rift between him and his £32.5million forward Robinho has always been wide of the mark. Robinho has had an awkward first season in the Premier League, but Hughes insists there is no disharmony. "There is a perception out there about myself and Robinho, and that everything is doom and gloom and the dressing room is fractured," the manager acknowledges. "The truth is a lot calmer than a lot of people would imagine." As for the huge amounts of money already spent on Robinho and evidently available from City's Middle East owners, Hughes believes they need to be seen in the context of cash-rich football rather than the rest of a largely financially troubled world. "In the current climate, people will look at those amounts and think it should not happen - but the football business is different to others," he explains. "The money is there, and it doesn't look like it is going to go away soon. We are part of that." Hughes, City executive chairman Garry Cook and the club's midfielder Stephen Ireland all spoke to BBC Radio Five Live on Wednesday night about the ethos and aspirations at Eastlands. Quizzed about the proposed £100million January signing of Brazilian Kaka from AC Milan - which in the end did not happen - Cook reiterated City's stance at the time that the move had been discussed for many months and was part of a sustainable long-term plan. And he defended City from suggestions that they are prepared to spend 'obscene' amounts. "I don't think it was the amount," he said of the intended Kaka investment. "I think it was that Manchester City were putting themselves in that arena - that was the biggest surprise for everybody. "We'd put four months of work into it. I think the perception was that it was a whim, and it really wasn't that - nor would we do anything at this club on a whim. "It was thought through - there was return on that investment. We felt it was the right move as a team." Ireland has no doubt either that City's mega-rich owners will do things the right way. "I don't think the the owners are flash like that. They want to build a good empire here," he said. "I don't think it is a matter of just buying players in."
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