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Let the good times roll, says Richard

Richard Dunne training 0809

Richard Dunne training 0809

Richard Dunne believes the Blues have finally come to terms with their new upper-crust status as he leads his buoyant City team-mates into the Old Trafford derby on Sunday with a spring in his step.

City's skipper is convinced that a "golden era" beckons the club and has pledged his continued allegiance to Mark Hughes' blue revolution - but he admits the takeover was a shock to the system last summer.

Dunney said: "The whole team has settled down well since Christmas. We've started to produce the standard of football that the manager was expecting at the start of the season. I think it was that we went from a normal club to high expectations.

"There was so much hype and photographers. It all takes a bit of getting used to I suppose, and it was unsettling for a lot of people, but now everyone has grown into it. It's just part of the normal Man City day now.

"I signed a four-year contract last summer. I've been here nine years, and I would love to stay. That was my thinking. If you're not at a top four club and not already at Manchester City, then this is the place to come.

It's a club with the potential to grow and win trophies. Signings will happen and then you have to rise to the challenge. Hopefully it's going to be a golden era for the club and being part of it would be great.

Richard Dunne

 

City have won three successive Premier League matches since the emotional UEFA Cup home win over Hamburg, including the crucial 2-1 victory at Everton that ended an eight-month spell without a domestic win on the road.

The Blues captain added: "It's a very difficult game for us but we're having a decent run and all the pressure is on them. They're expected to win so we can just go and play freely and enjoy the game.

"It's very tight in the chase for the European position, and that will go to the wire I imagine. We'd be delighted with a point or three at Old Trafford, but Tottenham will be the biggest decider for us.

"We're not out to stop them winning the title, because I think they will do that anyway. But we want to give our fans something to cheer about, and it's another chance to keep our good run going and get points to qualify.

"We did the double last season, so they'll probably be out to put that right, but that result at Old Trafford last season gives us confidence. Last time was brilliant for our fans, it was the highlight of our season.

"They were on the way to winning the Champions League and the Premier League title then as well, so it's a similar situation, and we have to believe in our own ability - since Hamburg, we've been playing pretty well."

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Mark Hughes 0809

Mark Hughes says it is "a great experience" to go back and taste victory at Old Trafford - and he won't be worrying about what kind of a reception he might get at Sunday's derby as City manager.