Mark Hughes’s dismissal at Manchester City attracted sympathy from many quarters after the dignified reaction of the Welshman to his sudden departure, a situation that was handled very poorly by the club.
The Welshman’s efforts at the club certainly deserved more. Hughes is without doubt a very accomplished manager. His career, it could be argued, started back to front, straight in at the deep end in taking the reigns of the Welsh national team in 1999. His efforts in taking Wales to the brink of European Championship qualification in 2004 may only now be truly appreciated after the team’s struggles in qualification campaigns of recent years.
His successes continued at Blackburn, leading the side to a sixth place finish in the league in 2006 and reaching three consecutive domestic cup semi-finals. His time at Manchester City was more notable for the takeover of the Abu Dhabi United Investment Group, which allowed Hughes to be highly active in the following transfer windows. I feel Hughes would have been successful at City however, if he had been given the time. When he was sacked, despite a succession of draws, City had only been defeated once all season. He could certainly have done as good a job as his replacement, Roberto Mancini.
Does Hughes’s C.V. warrant the honour of the Liverpool manager’s job though?
Personally, as a Liverpool fan, the answer is a resounding no. His C.V. in both his playing and management career, is highly impressive. But it has one huge flaw…Manchester United. Without that, Hughes would in all likelihood be high on Liverpool’s list of management targets.
However, it is impossible to see him take his place in the dugout at Anfield such is his standing at United, a thought that will not sit at all comfortably with the fans at Anfield, as it wouldn’t if the situation was reversed.
Hughes would be under huge pressure before he even started, aware of his unpopularity with the supporters, which will instil unwanted tension within the club. At such a crucial time in Liverpool’s recent history, the decision to install Hughes as manager would be damaging. This would not provide the stability, which the club and supporters are craving.
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