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Stevenage 15:00 Crewe

Gradi to shut City door

Crewe boss disappointed with City

Last Updated: 14/08/11 10:55pm

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Dario Gradi admits Crewe's relationship with Manchester City may break down over Dan Smith.

City are currently in the process of trying to lure one of the Alex's most promising academy stars to Eastlands.

Gradi has been left disappointed by the Premier League club, with Smith held in high regard at Gresty Road.

He had hoped to work with City coach David Platt to bring loan stars to Crewe, but concedes that any relationship between the two clubs is likely to have soured.

Gradi told The Sentinel: "We'd have a complication looking at City now as a club we can get loan players off with them trying to sign one of our young players," outlined Gradi.

"But we have got games to go to on Monday and Tuesday night where we will look at players we could possibly take on trial.

"We have got a reputation for playing good football, so we know managers are quite happy to loan us players. But I think it will be a question of finding that player who is better than the ones we have."

Targets

Gradi is still looking to dip into the loan market, with a number of trialists having come and gone this summer.

He added: "I'd like to bring in two defenders and maybe a big striker, but my budget might not allow that as I've got to pay wages (of the existing players).

"The defenders are a priority and, although having a big striker would be nice, I think we're just as well equipped up front as we were last season.

"You would think losing Clayton Donaldson would be a big miss, but I don't think it will be while we've got players here who can score goals. But the defending is difficult to assess at the moment.

"We've let in six goals in two games, but I don't think it is obvious the back four were at fault. We'll know better after the next two games as Gillingham and Rotherham are clubs closer to us who we'd expect to do as well as.

"It was hard to judge at Preston as they had accomplished players and were in control of the game."

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