Former Manchester City manger Mark Hughes has agreed to replace Roy Hodgson at Fulham for the upcoming season, according to The Guardian.
Hughes, who was sacked as manager of City midway through last season, beat out a number of other candidates, including Ivory Coast boss Sven-Goran Eriksson and USA manager Bob Bradley, for the gig. Fulham had agreed to terms with Ajax manager Martin Jol last week but the deal fell through when the Dutch club refused to negotiate a release of Jol’s contract.
Hughes comes to Craven Cottage with high expectations. Fulham went from battling relegation in 2008 to the finals of the Europa League last May. Their recent success led to Hodgson’s selection as Liverpool’s manager after the sacking of Rafa Benitez. Hughes’ first task will be to fight off bids for some of his star players, including an offer by Arsenal for goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer and AC Milan’s pursuit of USA international Clint Dempsey.
Mohamed Al Fayed, Fulham’s chairman, can now begin his transfer-window shopping, with former Portsmouth goalkeeper David James and Aston Villa midfielder Steve Sidwell some of his high-profile targets. Fulham haven’t released the length or financial details of Hughes’ contact as of yet.