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Season 2008/09

Cook and Hughes build for future

  • 23 August 2008 18:30
  • Posted byLeon Collins

As Garry Cook is preparing for his first home game as Executive Chairman of Manchester City tomorrow he has taken time out to speak to

The former Nike Air Jordan brand manager has been away in recent weeks in Asia and back to America and told us: “I guess this is modern day football now. I was in China at the Beijing Olympics as a guest of some dignitaries out there, but we were also meeting with some sponsors.

“We’ve got some pretty aggressive long-term marketing strategy goals for the next five years.

“So we’ve started to line some of those up and we’ve started to line some sponsorship up and working hard to try and expose Manchester City globally. That excites us and it’s a complete change for us.”

And while away on business, Cook has seen the Club fairly extensively covered with an array of stories he was quick to comment on.

He added: “I think it’s fair to say that most of the speculation is just that. These are challenges that you have to face, this is football, it’s everybody’s life and passion.

“We run a football club just like everybody else runs a football club. From the financial standpoint we’re working on the normal basis.”

And this week, that included a very positive meeting with the Chairman and Mark Hughes which was followed with the acquisition, less than 48 hours later of exciting young signing Vincent Kompany from SC Hamburg. So now Kompany has been added to the squad, could Garry disclose any more transfer targets?

“I wish I could tell you about all of them but every time I seem to talk about one, they don’t seem to happen,” he joked. “So I’m scared of making promises that don’t come to fruition; but it’s fair to say that there’s a pretty healthy list out there.

“We’ve put some offers out to some players and I think those are well documented. Some of those have been returned to us and obviously it’s disappointing, but that doesn’t stop us, we’re in the market for players and Mark knows what he wants.”

As well as building a team, Cook and Hughes have been building their working relationship and almost three months in, the Executive Chairman is still of the same opinion as on his first day at the Club.

“Mark is one of the best managers in the Premier League right now and definitely one of the greatest British managers and we think he’s got a long future with the football club,” Garry declared.

“He’s building for the future and as such we’re not unduly worried about this transfer window.  This is all about building a team for the long-term.

“We have a great relationship, again contrary to some opinions you may read, I spend a lot of time with him and speak to him most days.

“What I really like about him is that he’s thinking about the future. He’s an assertive man and he doesn’t like to lose, I like that about him.”

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