Santa Cruz relieved to finally be at City

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Roque Santa Cruz admitted he got frustrated at times waiting for the chance to work with Mark Hughes again.

Santa Cruz became Hughes' second major summer signing last week when he completed an £18million move from Blackburn.

"I have waited a long time for this," he said.

It was six times the figure Hughes paid to bring the Paraguayan to Ewood Park two years ago, a measure of the impact Santa Cruz has had in the Premier League following seven seasons at Bayern Munich.

The South American remembers what an enjoyable year he had working with Hughes at Blackburn, and knows the Welshman tried to get him as soon as he agreed to join Manchester City last summer.

Twelve months on, the dream has finally become reality, ending a difficult period for Santa Cruz, during which he was concerned about his chances of ending up at Eastlands.

"There were stages when I thought things were a bit difficult," he added. "Obviously the manager made his interest in me quite clear and obviously I was very keen to come.

"I also had to show respect for Blackburn but I was seduced by the fact Mark Hughes was here and I had the chance to play for him again."

While some have questioned Hughes' ability to draw performances out of top class players, Santa Cruz is in no doubt. He shares similar traits to the City chief that he is convinced will continue to draw the best out of him.

"I know the way the manager likes to work and what he thinks about football," said Santa Cruz. "He has a winning mentality deep inside and it is the same for me. I know we will play to win every week and try to win things. That is why the decision to come here was so easy."

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Manchester City
Blackburn Rovers
Mark Hughes
Premier League
Roque Santa Cruz
Mark Hughes

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