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Page last updated at Thursday, 28 February 2008, 15:33 GMT

Eriksson upbeat on Thaksin future

Thaksin Shinawatra
Thaksin completed his takeover of Manchester City in July 2007

Sven-Goran Eriksson is optimistic about Manchester City's future after owner Thaksin Shinawatra went back to Thailand to face corruption charges.

The ex-Thai PM returned to his homeland on Thursday after 17 months in exile.

Thaksin is hoping to clear his name and reclaim 800m of frozen assets, some of which could boost City's coffers.

"When I speak to him, he always tells me to find the right players. And, if we find them, we will do something in the summer," said the City boss.

Eriksson has been impressed by the financial support that Thaksin, 58, has provided since he completed his 81.6m takeover of City in July 2007.

The former England boss explained: "He has already done what he promised for us in the summer and in January.

"I don't think his support for the club has anything to do with him going to Thailand, and I don't know whether this trip is going to make things better or worse for us, but I am happy for him.

"We have not discussed a transfer budget yet but, whenever we meet, he tells me this club is going to get bigger and better."

City spokesman Paul Tyrrell said: "The 800m is his money, not City's, but if he continues to invest in us the way he has, our fans will be hugely grateful."

He is back in Thailand for the first time since being ousted as Prime Minister in a military coup in September 2006.

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On his arrival, he was taken straight to court to face charges of abuse of power during his time in office before being granted bail and told not to leave the country without permission ahead of his trial in March.

He has been joined in Thailand by Tyrrell and two City players, goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel and midfielder Kelvin Etuhu, who will be coaching local children and training with the Thai national side.

Schmeichel told BBC Radio 5 Live: "We are out here supporting our chairman.

"We will have to wait and see what happens but football-wise, and as far as City are concerned, he is a very good chairman, very generous and passionate. He wants the club to progress.

"Will he be distracted by all this? I don't think so.

"He is a very genuine guy with very genuine feelings for the club. City lie very close to his heart and the way he has supported the club since he came in has proved that."

SEE ALSO
Emotional return for ex-Thai PM
28 Feb 08 |  Asia-Pacific
In pictures: Thaksin's return
28 Feb 08 |  In Pictures
New cabinet unveiled in Thailand
06 Feb 08 |  Asia-Pacific
Thaksin ally elected as Thai PM
28 Jan 08 |  Asia-Pacific
Thaksin 'not fit to run Man City'
31 Jul 07 |  Man City
Thaksin completes Man City buyout
06 Jul 07 |  Business
Thaksin Shinawatra profile
31 Jul 07 |  Man City
Thailand freezes Thaksin's assets
11 Jun 07 |  Asia-Pacific
Thai ex-PM banned from politics
30 May 07 |  Asia-Pacific


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