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OFFICIAL club website of stoke city

"An Excellent Tactician"

MARK BOWEN today outlined the qualities he believes Mark Hughes will bring to the Britannia Stadium as manager of Stoke City.

Bowen is one of Hughes' closest allies having worked with him for Wales, Blackburn, Manchester City, Fulham and Queens Park Rangers.

The pair were reunited last week when Bowen was officially installed as the Potters' new assistant manager and the 49-year-old is relishing the opportunity to return to the Premier League after a spell away from the game.

And he has no doubts that Hughes has the credentials to make a significant impact in the Premier League at Stoke's helm.

Bowen says: "First and foremost, Mark is a friend; we've known each other since we were 12 or 13 years old, a very long time.

"What qualities does he bring to the job? He's an excellent tactician and coach; he knows what he wants but at the same time I wouldn't call him a person who adopts a 'my way or the highway' approach.

"He's very much open to different opinions. If somebody brings something to the table that he likes, he will take it on board.

"I'm sure the players will really enjoy working with Mark and hopefully myself and the other coaching staff.

"We've spoken to one or two of the players. Jonathan Walters popped into building the other day and we spoke to him and we got a really good reaction from him.

"We work on intensity and demand things on the training ground but good pros always embrace it - it's the only the ones who are not such good pros who react badly to it. We demand high standards from the players all the time."

Hughes, Bowen and first team coach Eddie Niedzwiecki will take their first training session with the Potters' squad on July 8th when the players report back for pre-season training.

But the trio are working hard to get acquainted with the players they have inherited and their new environment.

Bowen adds: "Everybody knows Stoke City's players but we're trying to go into a little bit more detail about them. We've been watching a lot of clips of them and talking to people.

"It's also a case of trying to acquaint ourselves with the training ground because this is our place of work. We're trying to ensure that when we come back on July 8th, there isn't too much that we don't know about the players and the place itself.

"It's important for myself and Eddie Niedzwiecki that we're comfortable in the environment that we're working in rather than it being totally brand new to us."

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