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Hughes wary of Harry's revival

Mark Hughes 0809

Mark Hughes 0809

Mark Hughes is expecting a tough test from a Spurs side rejuvenated after the recent arrival of Harry Redknapp.

The recently-installed Spurs boss has guided the previously underperforming squad into a run of four unbeaten games, although such was their poor start to the season that they remain at the bottom of the Premier League table.

Looking at Harry's impact, Mark tells us: "Everybody understood that they’ve got an exceptionally gifted group of players and for whatever reason they weren’t performing for the previous manager.

"Harry’s obviously recognised that certain things were wrong. He’s addressed them and the good players that should have being playing well before Harry’s arrival are just starting to play how everybody expected them to. They’re a very good side and it’s another big test, but at home, I think we can cause anybody problems."

Today's game sees Harry return to the City of Manchester Stadium seven weeks after his Portsmouth side were hammered 6-0, as City's boss is happy to recall.

"He'll be looking for something a bit more positive after the mauling his team had at our stadium a few weeks ago, let's hope we can replicate that! If we play as well as we know we can in our home games this weekend, then why not?"

A face familiar to Harry could be set to feature against him today, with Benjani vying for a place after making a goalscoring return to action against FC Twente on Thursday.

"I thought he looked really strong," Marks says of the big striker. "It’s always difficult when you’ve had a period out like he has to come back and make an impact. But it’s credit to him and how professional he’s been trying to get back to a level that would enable him to make an impact as soon as he was introduced. That was the case and we’re really pleased."

City will be without Vincent Kompany today, the Belgian midfielder having already reached five bookings for the season so far, and he is now suspended for one match.

"I haven't shouted at him, I thought that the booking last weekend was a ridiculous one. Because of his position he's going to liable to picking up more bookings than others, but he's been excellent since he came to the club. I've been really pleased with what he's done and he'll be a loss, as we don't have a great deal of players with that kind of physical presence in midfield. So he'll be missed but we'll find a way to work around it," Hughes concludes.


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Match Report

City v FC Twente 06-11-2008