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Hughes Confident Over Ireland Deal

Manchester City manager Mark Hughes is positive that 22-year-old Stephen Ireland will sign an extended contract to stay at Eastlands.

The City midfielder has been is fantastic form over the course of the season and his efforts were recognised in his nomination for the Professional Footballers' Association Young Player of the Year, which he narrowly missed out on to Aston Villa's Ashley Young.

Stephen Ireland had announced that he wanted to be what Giggs is to Manchester United by remaining at the club for at least another decade, his ambition to have a stand named after him.

Recently there have been discussions between the Mancheser City board and the Irishman over an extended contract to keep him at the club.

Sources close to the deal suggested that City will double Ireland's wages to £80,000-a-week in a bid to convince him that his long-term future lies at Eastlands.

Mark Hughes expects Ireland to put pen to paper soon, stating: 'I think we are very close, we had good discussions with Stephen last week and there is intent on both sides.

'We obviously want Stephen to be here for a considerable amount of time.

'I think Stephen himself has come out in recent days and said he wants to spend most of his career here, which was obviously very heartening from our point of view.

'I would imagine, as long as there are no hiccups along the way, which I don't imagine there will be, that it will get done very quickly.'




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The journalist

Writer: Lincolnsmariner Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Thursday May 14 2009

Time: 4:37PM

Your Comments

City for life.
eighthsin
I hope that one day he will come out of self imposed retirement and again play for his country. It is good news about a contract and the lad who is only 22 has been a star this season.
Buzz Lightyear
In the ridiculous worl of fottballer's wages, I think £80k per week is pretty damn reasonable for a player of Ireland's quality. Will take the whole family to his testimonial!
fifthcolumnblue
Ireland has blossomed under hughes - one of only a few compliments i can merit hughes with this year. He was a very average defensive midefielder under pearce and a ok'ish right winger under sven. Despite his averageness, we could all see that ireland had a eye for a pass and football brain. He just didnt fit in at city under previous management. No cared if he went to sunderland or not. He was just better suited in a 4-3-3 or a 4-2-3-1 formation. Ireland operates better in a creative midfield role like xavi and iniesta at barcelona. Irelands slight frame, clever movement, nimble feet is more "european" than "british" - citys youth policy is producing footballers with true skill. Ireland was never mascherano holding type or an out and out winger type like swp. His passion to train throughout the last summer alone before pre season started was true testiment that he means business at city. He will hold his head high alongside any superstar we sign in the future. Ireland deserves a new contract and he can be citys symbol of the club like raul, giggs and gerrard. I hope richards and johnson follow irelands and onouhas example next season.
enzo city
Great player he has been this year. Shame he plays for such a poor club.....
ForeverUnited
But then again, same can be said of Robinho, De Jong, Petrov and so on. They should be moving on soon....
ForeverUnited
Good grief.
Johnny Baguette
This poor Club will put the frighteners on a few teams next season ...beware FU we are going to rattle the top four.
alphieblues
alphieblues - I'm sure we're all cowering back into our little holes at the thought of a surge from the best and only club in Manchester! It's about time you made YOUR city proud wouldn't you agree? So when are Kaka and Messi coming? Maybe and JUST maybe you might then get a full house once every.....say.....15 games?
ForeverUnited
Can't wait for the rags to go up for sale later this year. The debt is spiralling out of control and the Glazers want out. What a disgrace when you consider so many clubs going to the wall at the grass roots of football. Life in the untouchable G14 elite eh, FU....
Johnny Baguette
Look United scum... go crawl back under the rock you came from and rot!!!
mcfcthriller
Cowering back into your little hole, eh FU? At least you have the good grace to admit where you're from.
fifthcolumnblue
JB - Do you really think we'll have trouble attracting buyers even if we went up for sale when we are the biggest brand in football? NO. So you'll just have to deal with being the team that trophies forgot!
ForeverUnited
 

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