Two league defeats all season, not that far off a Champions League place and a couple of games away from winning the club’s first silverware since about the reign of King Ethelred the Unready.
Not a bad season you would have thought. Well, as it’s turned out, not good enough for the people who run Manchester City.
Manager Mark Hughes and his backroom team sensed something was up on Saturday ahead of the match against Sunderland. After City’s 4 – 3 win, it was clear that Hughes was waving goodbye to the fans as well as to his job.
Some will ask how on earth this can be? Particularly when it could be argued that the man who did the sacking, chief executive Garry Cook, has made far more mistakes in his time at Eastlands than Hughes has – most of them public and also acutely embarrassing.
Let’s not forget, this is the man who accused Kaka of ‘bottling it’ when he decided not to move from AC Milan to Manchester. It must have been an agonising decision for the Brazilian. ‘Do I wait until Real Madrid come in for me or go to a club which is run by a couple of former boot salesmen?’
Indeed, some have suggested that when Cook hired his former Nike colleague Brian Marwood as a Director of Football, it seemed to drive a wedge between Team Hughes and Team Cook. Clearly the relationship between the two camps suffered and never recovered.
What is also clear is that Cook had long since lined Roberto Mancini as the new coach. With the Italian already in the city, Hughes underwent the footballing equivalent of ‘death by a thousand cuts’ on Saturday afternoon.
That said, have City made the right decision? Was Hughes not up to the task or has the club reacted far too quickly to a relatively poor run of results? What about the way the sacking was handled and how do you see the role of both Cook and Marwood in all of this?
Also, is Mancini the right man or will he be another top name coach that comes a cropper at City?
Vote now and also leave us a comment below. [poll=30]
Hughes has done a phenomenal job slowly bleeding the new players into the team and creating a chemistry. This was done because Mancini is good friends with the owner, they were lining up this sacking for weeks. A silly decision, over-ambition epitomised.
Under normal circumstances any manager should be given more time. This however is not a normal football situation and if individuals are prepared to invest Ăâ€šĂ‚ÂŁ200 million on new players they have a right to make rash, ignorant decisions. Man City is now more of business than any football club previous and owners with endless riches expect results. The club is a poison chalice.
I think it is almost never right for coaches to be sacked prior to their contracts running out, just the same way I feel players today need to do more to fill their contract obligations. Unbelievably poor performance may be one of those few reasons where I can see a manager must be let go in the middle of a campaign, but what Mark Hughes has done with this cast of over-paid and under-appreciated set of players is far from unbelievably poor. Those of us who find this the wrong move, along with Mark Hughes, can just hope that Mancini fails and Gary Cook looks silly.
Hughes was just in a bad spot at a bad time. I think if a manager does as good as Hughes did he should be manager over some long time friend. It is like something school boys would do on a playground just to have there friends closer. If I was a fan living in Manchester I would upset. Cook isn’t looking for the best thing for the club he is looking for the best things for himself. Selfish school boys does not equal a successful club.
i think its a shame when Sparky has been doing such a good job. its all well and good throwing money around but it should be explained to the owners that things take time to gel. a massive club like city are in and around the right area of the league for this time of year and stage in the clubs development.
shame on the board for not investing time as well as cash.
a Man utd fan
From an instant success point of view, yes. But that’s not very smart.
Very,very,very infair!! As Kevin Keegan state it was a decision made by a business rather than a football club. Stupid rich (and extremely impatient)foreigners who know near to nothing about football coming in and taking over!! It takes time to rebuild a football club, certainly alot longer than 3/4 of a season!!
That is what u get when u put people that don’t have a clue about the game in charge.
in my view i dnt tink tha management had tha ryt 2 sack mark,in overall this has been a gud start or even a great start 4 tha club n i tink that with hughes,man city wud have gone far even finishn in tha 1st five or better yet 1st four.