Mark Hughes Accepts Offer To Manage Fulham

Mark Hughes Manager Manchester City 2009/10 Manchester City V Wolverhampton Wanderers (1-0) 22/08/09 The Premier League Photo Robin Parker Fotosports International

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.

19 thoughts on “Mark Hughes Accepts Offer To Manage Fulham”

  1. It’s a good move for Fulham in my opinion. Hughes is a competent manager who will be able to give the Cottagers a fighting chance of doing nearly as well as they did last season (Europa League, not included).

    The Gaffer

    1. Lermio, we upgraded the site from an earlier version of WordPress to WordPress 3.0 last week, but we plan on adding the thumbs up/thumbs down rating system as soon as we get a chance.

      The Gaffer

  2. SPARKY!! He’s no Roy, but then again, he’s no Sven either. I’ll leave it to you which is the compliment and which is the dig.

  3. Bob Bradley would have been interesting, but was he even interviewed?

    Anyways, Hughes would be a great decision for Fulham. Perhaps the best available for them, and I’m certain that Al Fayed will give him much more support then his previous gig.

  4. I think it’s a great hire, and it’s also a great spot for what should be a competent manager. After finishing 12th last year there’s certainly room to improve, but it’s also unrealistic to expect too much. Europe should be the goal again. I think he’ll handle it quite well.

    (Although I have a question– is Fulham assured a spot in the Europa league this year because of it’s runner-up finish, despite its place in the table? Not entirely knowledgeable of the format.)

    1. Sadly no. If I’m reading the Europa League rules right only the winner gets an automatic bid and since Fulham was the runner-up they will have to try and qualify for next year. Europa League isn’t the easiest thing to figure out if I do say so myself.

  5. I’m a City fan and even though I’m happy with Mancini being in charge of my Blues i have to say i’m happy Sparky got this position. Wasn’t happy with how his situation was handled and he definitley deserves a chance again. Good luck Sparky! (not too much though. haha)

  6. Good signing. I am hoping that without the additional Europa matches this year Hughes will be able to take them back up the ladder.

  7. Good choice of managers. I think he got the bum wrap at Man City, and despite wanting Bob Bradley to go to FFC to help “the US coaching cause” he proved he’s not ready by his lack of preparation of his team in the first half of almost every game he’s coached.

  8. yes good luck sparky, now let’s hope that you blow your entire transfer budget on buying rs Cruz again, about £18 million should do it. Thank you.

  9. Am I the only one that thinks he’s terrible? I’d rate him a single, tiny notch above Sven.

    This is definitely a step down from Roy and will see the team slip down the table.

  10. I was thrilled with Roy as any Fulham fan would be and his shoes will be hard to fill. But I think once the Jol situation blew up, Hughes was a great selection. My guess is that MAF will be much more judicious in spending transfer money so Hughes will not be able to spend money and on questionable players and build unrealistic expectations like he did at Man City (where I think he was treated unfairly).

    I am hopeful for another Europa run in 2011-12. I also am hopeful that Ajax implode.

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