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May 17, 2011

Platt: City can be haven for world's best

On the back of one of the most successful weeks in Manchester City's history, first-team coach David Platt sees no reason why the club shouldn't now be on the radar of the world's best players.

City celebrated winning the FA Cup on Saturday, ending their 35-year wait for a major trophy, and also secured qualification for next season's Champions League by beating Spurs last Tuesday.

Roberto Mancini's side could leapfrog Arsenal and go third in the Premier League table if they beat Stoke on Tuesday night and should they finish above the Gunners they will avoid going through the Champions League play-offs and go straight into the group stage.

City's wealthy Abu Dhabi owners have already invested almost £300 million on new personnel since taking ownership of the club in 2008 and the likes of Carlos Tevez, Edin Dzeko and Yaya Toure certainly represent players of significant calibre.

And Platt feels that the club should be able to attract even bigger names now that they will be sitting at European football's top table next season, meaning there will be no repeat of the farcical £100 million offer for Kaka in January 2009, which was accepted by AC Milan before the Brazilian opted to stay because he was not convinced of City's quality.

"By winning something but perhaps more importantly by securing Champions League qualification, we will hopefully become more attractive to players," Platt said. "These are the kind of players that give us that next step up in quality.

"Hopefully, we'll manage to have a successful summer in terms of attracting some targets that we've got. We've got to make sure that we go for people that we feel can add quality and depth to the squad.''

City aim to kick on next season and challenge city rivals Manchester United for the title. But Platt insists winning silverware year-on-year is more important than occasionally getting the better of their neighbours.

"Progression is to go and compete for the title but nobody's turning around and bragging about that at all. City have had to suffer in the shadow of a club that's been magnificent. They won the league on Saturday so you can't take anything away from them.

"We won't be on a level with them until we start winning trophies on a regular basis. But to be in and around United, to compete with them, is tremendous for us. But the end result isn't necessarily to outdo Manchester United. The end result is to win trophies.''

Yaya Toure, who scored the winning goal against Stoke at Wembley, is determined to finish the season with a swagger. City close their campaign by facing Bolton on Sunday at the Reebok Stadium and the midfielder is eager to take maximum points from both games.

"We are already in the Champions League but to finish ahead of Arsenal in third place would be fantastic. I am so happy at the moment with the way things are going and seeing how much winning a trophy means to our supporters.

"Our dressing room is a great place to be. We are all together, we all fight for the team and that is so important.''

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