Sunday, 25 January 2009

Hughes' mission

Something I missed from the great Martin Samuel/Mark Hughes interview was this:
‘You know, some managers are fire fighters, some are developers and some take a successful club and continue its success. I develop: the team and the club. I get involved at all levels, in the details, in what is acceptable and what is not. And everywhere I have been my way has worked.

'Mediocrity has surrounded Manchester City for too long and if we don’t get these foundations in now, the project is built on sand and it will not be sustainable.’
The central narrative of Manchester City this season has been Mark Hughes' attempt to impose his will, his character, on all aspects of the football club. I wrote after the West Brom defeat that it was Hughes' nature as Eriksson's antithesis that has caused all the discord at the club this year. Whether or not Hughes is right in his analysis of 2007/08 (I used to think he was wrong but am increasingly coming round to his position), the point is that he is making changes based on that understanding.

The problem is that if he is replaced in the summer with a more Eriksson like manager - Frank Rijkaard or Guus Hiddink, we'll have to go through this same discord, clear out, growing pains all over again. This sentiment may actually be one of the strongest pro-Hughes arguments. On a personal level my support for Hughes is at least as much of a function of a desperate desire for stability (Kevin '3 and a half seasons' Keegan remains the longest serving manager of my life time) than any rational assessment of his achievements thus far in the job.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

A great and successful club can only be so with great and successful managers... And a manager needs time for this to happen. Mark Hughes and MCFC cannot become successful in one or even two seasons, so he MUST be given time to get it right.

My personal opinion is that he he can be the man to lead us forward and he should be given the time and freedom to achieve it.

The only situation which should alter us from that path would be a disastrous second half of this season. To me that would be finishing lower than 8th... 7th looks there for the taking since Wigan have lost 2 key players in Palacios and Heskey and surely Hull will stabilise around 9th or 10th.

I actually think we will finish 7th and am hoping for a good run at 6th with striker-less Everton being 11 points ahead but having played one game more... Definitely catchable if we have a good run and they don't...

We'll see but I'm more hopeful now than I've been for a little while and like you JPB am instinctively behind Hughes and his methods because I think it will work given time.

Onwards and Upwards!