Bringing Gareth Barry to Manchester City was a key building block in Mark Hughes’ plans for reshaping his squad, according to the Blues’ boss.
City’s Monday night appointment will see much attention focussed on the England midfielder as he returns to his former stamping ground, where he built his excellent reputation over a dozen years.
His transfer to City was the first of a busy summer for his new club manager, who has included him from the start of every competitive game of 2009/10 so far.
“Gareth was always someone I had admired from afar,” Hughes declared. “I looked at his qualities, and the amount of games he had in the Premier League, and the amount of quality performances he had produced over a long period of time.
“He has a huge range of passing, can be constructive and destructive at times and I felt he was a player we needed to bring to the club. Thankfully we were able to do that very quickly, and to an extent I think it helped enable us get other players to come to the club.
“Gareth understood what we were trying to do here very quickly, and that we were able to get one of the key men in the England set-up to come to us really helped our strategy of acquisitions.”
Despite the high-profile transfer and being a crucial part of Fabio Capello’s plans for next year’s World Cup campaign, Gareth goes about his business in an understated way, something Hughes clearly appreciates.
Hughes continued: “Those types of players are invaluable, he just comes in and gets the job done on a daily basis. You can hang your hat on Gareth Barry, he’s able to produce performance after performance and that is invaluable to any team.”