Hughes axed after FA Cup embarrassment

Stoke City axed Mark Hughes in the wake of the club’s FA Cup third-round exit at the hands of League Two Coventry City.

The embarrassing defeat to Coventry coupled with a dismal run of five defeats in seven league games that has left the club in 18th position in the Premier League was the final straw for the Stoke’s board.

A statement released by the club 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 places finishes in the Premier League, and we wish him every success for the future,” it added.

The club said it would “look to appoint a new manager as soon as possible”.

Stoke’s next game is against Manchester United on January 15.

The sacking brings an end to Hughes five years in charge at the Potters and was Hughes’ 200th game in charge of the club in all competitions.

Speaking after the defeat, Hughes said that the defeat did not change the situation regarding his position and that it “might be a blessing” for the rest of the season.

Hughes, a former Manchester City, Blackburn Rovers, Fulham and QPR manager, took over from Tony Pulis at Stoke in May 2013 and led Stoke to three successive ninth-placed finishes before finishing 13th place last season.