Manchester City’s manager Mark Hughes has been informed he will not be sacked in the summer, despite being knocked out of the UEFA Cup on Thursday night.
Speculation has been mounting that the City manager would be fired at the end of the current campaign after a disappointing season, but chairman Khaldoon Al Mubarak has assured Hughes he will be given another season to prove his worth at Eastlands.
City’s last chance for silverware this season ended when, despite beating Hamburg 2-1 on the night, the German Bundesliga side progressed to the UEFA Cup semi-finals beating a spirited City 4-3 on aggregate.
Ahead of the game Hughes held talks with Al Mubarak to discuss the club’s future, during which the manager was told he would be given more time to bring success to the club which was bought last year by the Abu Dhabi United Group. It is understood that the club’s owners will expect a dramatic improvement in the club’s fortunes next season.
The club’s owners are expected to press ahead with the plans to sign big-name players this summer; Thierry Henry and Franck Ribery are thought to be top of their list.
Speaking after the game against Hamburg Hughes said of his meeting with Al Mubarak: ”It was fine, I am still here. It was big night for everyone at the club for obvious reasons. We needed to make a statement and I think we did that with the level of our performance.
”It was important we came out and showed people there are things happening here and we have ability.
”When in the future we are able to produce it on a regular basis we will be a very difficult side to overcome. It is the beginning of long journey.”
Hughes was proud of his players’ performance, saying: ”It was a really poor start but we did not let that affect us. We picked ourselves up and got back on level terms very quickly.
”There was a real sense that we were trying to make something special happen and we almost achieved that goal. But unfortunately we did not get that break when we needed it.”