Sir Alex Ferguson has revealed that he ‘never in a million years’ expected Mark Hughes to make the step into management. The Scotsman managed Hughes as a player at Old Trafford and he clearly didn’t think that the current Manchester City boss had what it takes to be a manager at the top level.

Fergie, show us how likely it is that Mark Hughes will become a top flight manager….

Speaking about which of his current playing staff might go on into coaching, Ferguson said it was ‘difficult to pinpoint’ at this stage'  because he has been surprised by Hughes who ‘nobody thought’ would want to become a boss.

Then, there was Bryan Robson who Ferguson says was viewed as a ‘certainty to be a top manager’. Despite these early opinions, Hughes has arguably reached greater heights than Robson, especially when you consider he is currently in charge of one of the richest clubs in the world.

For this reason, it is difficult for Ferguson to tell if the likes of Paul Scholes, Ryan Giggs and Gary Neville will be able to make it as a manager one day. What he can comment on though, is the here and now.

Under the guidance of Hughes, City are aiming for a top four finish and as much silverware as they can get their hands on. This includes the Carling Cup, which sees them face Ferguson and United in the two legged semi-finals early next year.

So, when asked about the threat of Manchester City’s millions, Ferguson simply replied that it is ‘another challenge’ he and his team won’t be afraid of. First it was Chelsea a few years ago with the injection of money, now it is their bitter rivals.

This lack of fear seems to be reflected in Manchester United’s Carling Cup betting, which makes them favourites to lift the trophy.

Ferguson is also determined his team will come out on top, starting with the semi-final clashes with Hughes and Manchester City.

The Carling Cup is the first trophy up for grabs and there is no doubt Ferguson will want to make sure his former player is denied a place in the final.

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