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Cherries: Pugh aims to silence the Bury boo boys
MARC Pugh is determined to prove a point to the Bury boo boys after admitting he expects to get a hostile reception at Gigg Lane.
The Cherries winger, who was born in Bury will be aiming to showcase his skills when he returns to face his old employers this afternoon (3pm).
Pugh has received stick from the Bury faithful in previous games between the teams due to the manner of his exit from the Greater Manchester club.
The 25-year-old, who penned a new long-term contract with Cherries this week, reportedly angered fans when he switched to Shrewsbury in 2007.
But influential player Pugh says he plans to use any criticism as motivation when in-form Cherries meet the Shakers.
He told the Daily Echo: “They give me a bit of stick and call me all sorts of names. But it has got to spur you on to try to get one over on them.
“They gave me an opportunity in professional football and I am really grateful for that.
“But it is football and people move on. Like anyone, I don’t hold grudges on managers in the past that haven’t played me because it is a job at the end of the day and people have to do what it best for themselves and their family.
“It has proved to be a great decision being at AFC Bournemouth.”
Chris Casper, the then Bury manager in 2007, criticised the role of Pugh’s agent in the playmaker opting not to sign a new deal with the Gigg Lane outfit after they had handed him his first professional contract following his release from boyhood club Burnley.
But giving his side of the story this week, Pugh said: “I was performing really well after about six months and they had only given me a one-year contract. After the six months, Shrewsbury showed a bit of interest and Bury offered me a short-term contract again.
“But Shrewsbury came in and offered me three years. I had my girlfriend at the time and we wanted to get married so we just thought about the future. I loved my time at Shrewsbury as well.”
Pugh, a key figure since joining Cherries from Hereford in 2010, has established himself as one of the division’s leading performers in recent years.
With 30 goals in 114 Cherries appearances, he is hoping to further enhance his reputation today and insists he will be unfazed by the crowd.
Pugh added: “You have just got to get on with it. You have got the added pressures of football but it doesn’t worry me.
“I just want to prove to them that I am still a good player and, hopefully, maybe nick a goal or two, which would be nice.”