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Hughes preparing to make bids for new players

Mark Hughes will step up his bid to strengthen his struggling Manchester City squad this week, revealing he is almost ready to show his hand.

Hughes has come under increasing pressure due to City's poor form, culminating in the horrendous 3-0 home reverse to Nottingham Forest in the FA Cup. He knows it's make or break time with big names expected to come through the door at Eastlands.

Hughes has already snapped up Wayne Bridge from Chelsea in the first of a number of new faces to move to the City of Manchester Stadium. Roque Santa Cruz, Shay Given, Kolo Toure, Craig Bellamy and Scott Parker have all been heavily linked.

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 against Forest.

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.

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