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Hughes to keep transfer funds for summer spree


Mark Hughes

Mark Hughes

Mark Hughes

Stoke boss Mark Hughes has revealed he plans to save the club's transfer funds for the summer rather than splash out in the January window.

Consecutive victories over Everton and West Brom have seen the Potters climb to 11th in the table ahead of tomorrow's home match against Manchester United.

Hughes' side are only six points off a place in the top six but the Stoke manager insists he will resist the temptation to make any major signings next month. "We might look at the loan market but we're not close to anything really at the moment," Hughes said. "I wouldn't have thought we'll be spending anything significant in the January window.

"We're better served keeping what finances we have available ready to go into the market in the summer. I think that would be our best policy."

Stoke's 2-0 win over West Brom on Sunday saw the team register back-to-back clean sheets in the league for the first time this season.

Asmir Begovic and Ryan Shawcross have been two of the Potters' star performers at the back this term but Hughes insists he is not expecting any bids for the duo next month.

"There's speculation about the best players at most clubs and the two you mentioned are in that bracket from our point of view," Hughes said.

"We're not encouraging any bids on any of our players and that won't change in January and it won't change in the summer.

"Other clubs might have something to say about that and they may be persistent but we've had no bids for those two players up to this point and I don't anticipate we will have bids in the January window either."

Begovic's current contract has 18 months left to run and Stoke are trying to persuade the Bosnian stopper to extend his deal amid reported interest from Liverpool.

"There are discussions but I don't think it's progressed further than that," Hughes said. "There's no real timescale but the closer the contract comes to running down the more the power shifts away from us as a club and closer to the player and his representatives."