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Page last updated at 15:27 GMT, Wednesday, 1 July 2009 16:27 UK

Santa Cruz aims for top-four spot


Santa Cruz prepared to fight for Man City place

Manchester City striker Roque Santa Cruz says the club will regard anything less than a top-four finish as failure next season.

City finished 22 points adrift of fourth-placed Arsenal last season.

But with Santa Cruz and £12m midfielder Gareth Barry likely to be joined by other big-money signings this summer, a more concerted challenge is expected.

"The top four is the aim. Just to say we want to win as many games as possible will not be enough," he said.

"Winning trophies is a very hard task. It is certainly not going to happen from one day to the next and it is going to take a lot of work."


"Everyone has their own goals but it is important that everyone thinks in the same way and is pushing in the right direction."

A massive increase in transfer funds since the Abu Dhabi United Group bought out previous owner Thaksin Shinawatra in September has raised expectations at Eastlands.

The £32.5m capture of Robinho on the day as the takeover was followed by the arrival of Craig Bellamy, Nigel de Jong, Wayne Bridge and Shay Given during the January transfer window.

A high-profile pursuit of Brazilian playmaker Kaka failed, but City are now on the trail of Barcelona striker Samuel Eto'o.

Chairman Khaldoon al-Mubarak has previously spoken of his desire to break into the top six next season and Santa Cruz believes manager Mark Hughes, who he played under at previous club Blackburn, is the man to push the club towards Champions League qualification.

Hughes has a winning mentality deep inside and it is the same for me

Roque Santa Cruz

"Obviously the manager made his interest in me quite clear and obviously I was very keen to come.

"I also had to show respect for Blackburn but I was seduced by the fact Mark Hughes was here and I had the chance to play for him again.

"He has a winning mentality deep inside and it is the same for me.

"I know we will play to win every week and try to win things. That is why the decision to come here was so easy."

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see also
Man City pull plug on Eto'o move
10 Jul 09 |  Man City
Man City complete Santa Cruz deal
22 Jun 09 |  Man City
Man City snap up Barry for 12m
02 Jun 09 |  Man City
Given completes Man City transfer
01 Feb 09 |  Man City
Man City complete De Jong signing
21 Jan 09 |  Man City
Man City complete Bellamy signing
19 Jan 09 |  Man City
Man City move for Kaka collapses
20 Jan 09 |  Man City
Bridge seals transfer to Man City
03 Jan 09 |  Man City
Man City beat Chelsea to Robinho
01 Sep 08 |  Man City
Arab group agrees Man City deal
01 Sep 08 |  Man City

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