Thursday 26 April, 2018

Stoke fires manager Mark Hughes with team in EPL relegation zone

Stoke City have parted company with Mark Hughes after a prolonged slump in form under the Welshman left them fighting against Premier League relegation.

Hughes was in charge at the bet365 Stadium for four and a half years, leading the Potters to three successive ninth-place finishes in the top flight.

However, they finished 13th last term and have slipped to 18th in 2017-18, having won only one of their last seven league matches.

Saturday's 2-1 FA Cup third-round defeat to League Two side Coventry City - Hughes' 200th game in charge - proved the final straw for the Stoke hierarchy, with the former Blackburn Rovers and Manchester City boss relieved of his duties soon after.

A club statement said: "Stoke City can confirm that the contract of manager Mark Hughes has been terminated with immediate effect.

"We would like to thank Mark for all he has achieved for the club over the last four and a half years, notably in guiding us to three successive ninth place finishes in the Premier League, and we wish him every success for the future.

"The club will look to appoint a new manager as soon as possible and will be making no further comment at this time."

Next up for Stoke is a trip to face Manchester United at Old Trafford a week on Monday.