Hughes out, Mancini in at City

by Neil Sherwin

Manchester City have sensationally parted company with manager Mark Hughes just hours after they defeated Sunderland 4-3 at the City of Manchester Stadium.

The Welshman is to be replaced by former Internazionale boss Roberto Mancini, who was spotted in the crowd at today’s game, effective immediately.

City owner Sheikh Mansour is believed to be unhappy at the club’s recent results that included a run of eight consecutive draws.

In a statement issued on the club’s website, chairman Khaldoon Al Mubarak said: “Prior to the current season beginning, with significant investment in players and infrastructure in place, the consensus between the Board and coaching staff was that appropriate agreed targets should be set for the 2009/2010 season.

“The targets were agreed as a result of the player acquisition strategy of the club being radically accelerated in the summer as a result of very favourable conditions for any buying club.  It was also based on the fact that the infrastructure of the club had been overhauled completely at great cost in order to create the best possible environment for the team.

“A return of two wins in 11 Premier League games is clearly not in line with the targets that were agreed and set.  Sheikh Mansour and the Board felt that there was no evidence that the situation would fundamentally change. This is a particularly difficult announcement given the personal investment over the past 15 months on all sides and we would like to put on record our respect for and thanks to Mark Hughes and we wish him the best in his future career.”

Mancini has signed a three year deal at the City of Manchester Stadium having previously won three Serie A titles at the San Siro with Inter.

Former City and Manchester United player Brian Kidd has been confirmed as Mancini’s assistant.

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