Hughes to meet club owners in Abu Dhabi

There was no delicate way around the necessary question for Mark Hughes, who in a week or so will be on a plane bound for Abu Dhabi to meet his club's new owners.

With nine points fewer than Sven Goran Eriksson had collected at this time last season - and look what happened to him - how does he feel about his future employment prospects?



Hughes answered with his usual handsome grip of a question like that. "You can look at the negatives aspects of the stats or the positives, whichever angle you want to highlight," he said.



You can say that we're scoring as many goals as the top teams - that's a positive. The negative is that we're conceding too many and losing games as a consequence." The crucial statistic is that City have conceded twice in five of their last six games, their defence porous in a way which is making a mockery of that top four talk.



Hughes, who needs Sunday's trip to resurgent Spurs like a hole in the head, stated again yesterday, that the squad he inherited from Eriksson "hasn't been added to, to any great extent" (Jo, Robinho, Vincent Kompany, Pablo Zabaleta and Shaun Wright-Phillips don't seem to count). There will be money for more and the defence is in need of wholesale reconstruction, with Micah Richards going backwards, Richard Dunne's occasional stellar displays masking a struggle for form and Javier Garrido looking a misfit.



Hughes could at least reflect on the snip at £8m which Shaun Wright Phillips, a rather better piece of business that £17m David Bentley has been for Spurs.He insists he did not bid to buy Bentley from his old club Blackburn Rovers in the summer, though the view from Ewood Park is that an informal inquiry as to his availability was made.



"Shaun was something like £8million, Bent's was £17million so I'm not too upset with the deal I've been able to do," said Hughes, whose defensive woes are not helped today by the absence of influential holding midfielder Vincent Kompany. "That's not to say I haven't got great admiration for what David can do.I think he just needs to be played in the right position. He was messed around [by Juande Ramos] somewhat playing in different positions."



City have not won away since the Arabs bought them but Hughes maintains that the Eriksson way is not for him. "It's still very early in what they are having to experience because the way I work I know is completely different the previous manager so that takes time but we'll get there," he said.

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Homeless Veterans appeal: 'You look for someone who's an inspiration and try to be like them'

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
Could cannabis oil reverse the effects of cancer?

Could cannabis oil reverse effects of cancer?

As a film following six patients receiving the controversial treatment is released, Kate Hilpern uncovers a very slippery issue
The Interview movie review: You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here

The Interview movie review

You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here
Serial mania has propelled podcasts into the cultural mainstream

How podcasts became mainstream

People have consumed gripping armchair investigation Serial with a relish typically reserved for box-set binges
Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up for hipster marketing companies

Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up

Kevin Lee Light, aka "Jesus", is the newest client of creative agency Mother while rival agency Anomaly has launched Sexy Jesus, depicting the Messiah in a series of Athena-style poses
Rosetta space mission voted most important scientific breakthrough of 2014

A memorable year for science – if not for mice

The most important scientific breakthroughs of 2014
Christmas cocktails to make you merry: From eggnog to Brown Betty and Rum Bumpo

Christmas cocktails to make you merry

Mulled wine is an essential seasonal treat. But now drinkers are rediscovering other traditional festive tipples. Angela Clutton raises a glass to Christmas cocktails
5 best activity trackers

Fitness technology: 5 best activity trackers

Up the ante in your regimen and change the habits of a lifetime with this wearable tech
Paul Scholes column: It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves

Paul Scholes column

It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves
Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Club World Cup kicked into the long grass by the continued farce surrounding Blatter, Garcia, Russia and Qatar
Frank Warren column: 2014 – boxing is back and winning new fans

Frank Warren: Boxing is back and winning new fans

2014 proves it's now one of sport's biggest hitters again
Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton: The power dynamics of the two first families

Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton

Karen Tumulty explores the power dynamics of the two first families
Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley with a hotbed of technology start-ups

Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley

The Swedish capital is home to two of the most popular video games in the world, as well as thousands of technology start-ups worth hundreds of millions of pounds – and it's all happened since 2009
Did Japanese workers really get their symbols mixed up and display Santa on a crucifix?

Crucified Santa: Urban myth refuses to die

The story goes that Japanese store workers created a life-size effigy of a smiling "Father Kurisumasu" attached to a facsimile of Our Lord's final instrument of torture
Jennifer Saunders and Kate Moss join David Walliams on set for TV adaptation of The Boy in the Dress

The Boy in the Dress: On set with the stars

Walliams' story about a boy who goes to school in a dress will be shown this Christmas