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Saturday, 15 June, 2002, 04:53 GMT 05:53 UK

Wanchope welcomes City challenge

Costa Rica striker Paulo Wanchope has vowed to return to Manchester City to fight for his first-team place next season.

Wanchope faces intense competition for a starting berth at Maine Road, following City boss Kevin Keegan's close-season spending spree.

Former England international Keegan added French striker Nicolas Anelka and Argentine Vicente Vuoso to his strike force.

Keegan has already said that Anelka will be his first choice, leaving Wanchope to battle it out with Vuoso, Shaun Goater, Jon Macken and Darren Huckerby for the second striking berth.

In the wake of Costa Rica's exit from the World Cup, Wanchope welcomed the increased competition, convinced it will make Manchester City stronger.

" It's a good sign of his ambition, because we want to be up there challenging and not at the bottom again "
Paulo Wanchope

Wanchope said: "I'm happy to go back to Manchester City next season.

"I'm looking forward to playing in the Premiership again.

"I'm looking forward to playing with Nicolas Anelka - and the other new signings - and he's a great player.

"You hope to play with great players like him.

"The coach Kevin Keegan wants more players and that's good.

"That's a good sign of his ambition, because we want to be up there challenging and not at the bottom again."


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