Man U target Sparky as no.2


Starting XI
Man Utd target Hughes

Former Manchester United star Mark Hughes could be on his way back to Old Trafford as assistant to manager Sir Alex Ferguson.

Wales boss Hughes is in line to replace new Real Madrid manager Carlos Queiroz as Ferguson's number two.

Hughes has led Wales to the brink of next year's European Championship finals in Portugal.

But United have reportedly been trying for more than six months to tempt him back to the Theatre of Dreams.

"Alex has been working hard for a long time to get Mark on board," Queiroz is quoted as saying in the News of the World.

"He tried to get him in November but it was difficult because Hughes was asking too much money.

"United brought in Ricky Sbragia from Sunderland in the end and he is working with the youngsters.

"Hughes wasn't making it easy at the time to take him to Manchester but Sir Alex can't do everything.

"Sharing responsibilities is key for the smooth running of that club."

The 39-year-old, who had two spells with United in the 1980s and 1990s and won 72 caps for Wales, has three years left on his Wales deal.

But Welsh Football Association president Des Shanklin told the same paper: "We have to recognise going into management with United would be Mark's ultimate dream.

"Manchester United are the biggest club in the world and we would never stand in Mark's way if he wanted to leave.

"But I'm 100% confident that he will see out his contract with us.

"The fans would be mortified if he walked out on us now.

"It is not surprising United are interested in Mark, given his track record over the past two years. My opinion is that Mark is very happy with his arrangement with us.

"I spoke with him at a three-hour meeting on Friday and he's given no indication of a possible move to United."

BBC Sport

I'm guessing JJ won't be best pleased if it happens:p.

Haukur Gudnason

::President Scouser::
fergy should sod has done a bloody marvellous job for wales and i'd absolutely hate it to see him taken off like that...


Scum can fuck off if they think they're going to poach Sparky as Beetroot Face's number 2. He's done such a brilliant job with the national team, especially since he took the post full-time.

Then again, the story was published in the News of the World, so my guess is that it's a load of bollocks.


Red Card - Life
Life Ban
As assistant of man u he would be there every day of the week, the only times he would get off would international breaks.

And you would expect a national coach to be visiting his players and seeing how they play in the league.

Something that he couldn't do at man u.

man united forever

Senior Squad
True - I wasn't thinking when I posted that.

In spite of me being a Manchester United supporter, I would prefer it if Sparky stayed with Wales until at least after Euro 2004 concludes. Wales are so close to a major competition and I'd love to see them back on the big stage(not to mention the sight of Ryan Giggs playing in the Championships for the first time;)). He would be a great assistant for Sir Alex and is definitely a candidate to take over from him in the near future, but for the short term, I'd like to see him take Wales to Euro 2004.


I don't think Sparky will go after the Euro 2004 championships either...

But like I said, it's the News of the World that covered the story, and they're widely reknowned for speculation that turns out to be total bollocks.


Starting XI
I hope that Wales finally gets a spot at European Championship. It proves that a small country can make it to big tournaments. I wish Finland would be performing as good as you walesmen ;)


Senior Squad
Tough choice for me. I'd love to see him back at Man Utd, but he's doing such a great job for Wales that I wouldn't like to see him leave. If only there is a way he could do both jobs, at least until after Euro2004, I'd be happy.


Starting XI
Hughes rules out Man Utd return

Wales manager Mark Hughes insists he will not walk away from the job despite being linked with a return to Manchester United.
Sir Alex Ferguson's former number two at Old Trafford Carlos Queiroz claimed before leaving for Real Madrid that the Premiership champions wanted to tempt Hughes back to his former club.

But Hughes said: "It is extremely flattering to have your name linked with jobs.

"But the facts of the matter are that I am Wales manager, I've started a job here and I want to see it through."

He added: "This sort of newspaper talk invariably happens in football when your team plays well and achieves good results - which is what's been happening with Wales for the past year and a half.

"Football being what it is, the manager is invariably the one who gets linked with other jobs. But I repeat, while I'm obviously flattered by the talk, I've got a job to do with my country.

"We've got four massive games coming up this autumn in our bid to reach Portugal, starting with Serbia-Montenegro on 20 August.

"My focus is very firmly on that and working out how we can build upon our excellent start to the qualifying campaign.

"I've put in an awful lot of hard work since I became manager and over the last season and a half we've really begun to see the behind the scenes efforts come to fruition.

"It's important that we remain totally focused to ensure that the improvement in Welsh football's fortunes continues."

Hughes, who took charge of Wales in 1999, could become the first manager of his country to win qualification by right for the finals of a major international tournament.

The remarkable results which have taken Wales to the top of Group Nine in the Euro 2004 qualifiers have alerted a host of Premiership and European clubs.

But Hughes told BBC Sport only a few weeks ago that he was not contemplating a switch to club management.

BBC Sport