Reaction to the media reaction on Mark Hughes departure
The past two days have seen City take centre stage in the media once again and it’s not been pretty. In fact it’s probably been more brutal than the sacking of Hughes, who is now being described along the lines of the greatest manager ever.
Whenever a manager is sacked, there’s always an outcry by people in the media, fellow managers and former players who say he should have been given more time, etc. This is all the more vociferous as City’s (foreign) owners have had the audacity to sack a “British Manager”, which appears to be a protected species. And then we’ve replaced him with a foreigner! Behind his back! Without a due period of mourning, and no time to write ‘City in no-manager crisis’ articles.
As a renowned player and formerly promising young manager who conducts himself well, Mark Hughes enjoys a fair amount of good will from the press. From the tabloids to the broadsheets they were lining up today and it’s not hard to spot the Hughes fans.
Ian Ladyman at the Mail is arguably the worst with his “Betrayal of a decent man” by “what used to be known as a decent football club.” The bias is dripping from every line.
John Dillon at the Express also laments how we have lost the “spirit of the old people’s club of Maine Road”.Ã‚Â Dreadful.
Their nostalgia is getting a little to misty if they can’t recall any chaotic managerial changes taking place in the Peter Swales era, or the years that followed.
Henry Winter, another Hughes fan, was quick to put the boot in on Khaldoon, but there are some interesting articles coming out of The Telegraph at the moment.
Jason Burt describes how Cook formerly offered the job to Hiddink at the start of the month. The article goes on to claim that Mancini and Clarence Seedorf have been used as unofficial transfer advisors for some of Hughes’ purchases. This seems a little far-fetched as there was never any indication from Hughes that signings after Robinho were anything but his own.
There’s also a piece describing how Mancini was socialising with Khaldoon in January.
Garry Cook and Brian Marwood get the worst treatment, accused of stabbing Hughes in the back. More realistically, it is said the decision to remove Hughes was made by Sheikh Mansour and Khaldoon. Once that decision had been made by Sheikh Mansour, then Cook would be charged with sorting out a deal with a new manager. That’s not a nice thing to have to do, but that’s part of his job.
Likewise Marwood was brought in as a ‘football administrator’ to serve the best interests of the club – not Hughes. If he had concerns about some of the transfers or other things, then it was his job to voice them.
A few years ago I remember thinking it rather harsh when Bruce Rioch was sacked by Arsenal after guiding them to a Uefa Cup place. Afterall, he’d done well at Bolton. Arsenal appointed that little known Frenchman Arsene Wenger who’d been out in Japan and had no experience of English football. Nobody remembers Bruce Rioch now.
If Mancini is a success, then all this will be considered a decisive and necessary act – just as it was with Scolari at Chelsea.
As ever, it’s a results game.
On the plus side, there are some decent articles telling us more about Mancini. Here’s one by the BBC and another by Gabriele Marcotti at the Times. Richard Williams also profiles the man whose favourite colour is blue “in all its shades”.