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Page last updated at 09:06 GMT, Monday, 18 May 2009 10:06 UK

Man City boss defiant over future

Mark Hughes
Hughes took over from Sven-Goran Eriksson last summer

Manchester City boss Mark Hughes has been given assurances that he will be in charge of the club next season.

There has been speculation that City's mid-table position in the Premier League might prompt owners Abu Dhabi United Group to replace the Welshman.

But Hughes insists he is going nowhere after receiving reassurances from City chairman Khaldoon Al Mubarak on Friday.

"Everyone has to understand that I'll be manager here next year. That's been made very clear to me," said Hughes.

"We are in tune with that we want to do but we are totally frustrated and bemused by the speculation."

606: DEBATE
Steve-O-MCFC

City were beaten 2-1 by Tottenham at White Hart Lane on Saturday to end their hopes of playing in the Europa League next season.

The lack of European competition could affect their ambitious transfer plans.

The club has already been linked with Chelsea's Didier Drogba, Barcelona's Samuel Eto'o, Real Madrid's Raul and AC Milan's Ronaldinho in recent weeks.

But Hughes remains upbeat.

"There has been too much speculation about players and my future," he added.

"It has made my job more difficult than it already is. I would like to think speculation about my future will be at a lesser level because it has been unhelpful."

Chairman Al Mubarak admits the rumours about the future of Hughes have been an unwelcome distraction.

There has been incredible and unnecessary pressure put on Mark from outside the club, especially from the media, but I recognise that it comes with the game and with football

City chairman Khaldoon Al Mubarak

"I have been surprised at all the speculation, because I have always been consistent with everyone on the subject of the manager," he said.

"Every time I have spoken, I have said the we have the highest confidence in Mark, and I would like to re-iterate that now. Mark will be our manager next season - nothing has changed.

"It has been a difficult season with all the rumours about Mark's future and the number of players that we have been linked with.

"There has been incredible and unnecessary pressure put on Mark from outside the club, especially from the media, but I recognise that it comes with the game and with football."

Al Mubarak added that the club had made good progress in the last 12 months.

"From my perspective, I think we have come a long way, and I am very much looking to a big finish to the season next week against Bolton," he said.

"When you consider how things have gone since January, I think we have accomplished things and now we can start focusing on next season.

"For once this club can have a pre-season. This is a club that has had ten managers in 15 years - it is hard to believe we have ever had a real pre-season.

"So this time we will have that, and we will do so with a year's experiences behind us. That will make us stronger. I think next year is going to be better than this one. The club has a lot more stability."



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see also
Tottenham 2-1 Man City
16 May 09 |  Premier League
Hughes makes light of Raul rumours
08 May 09 |  Football
Man City discuss Eto'o with Barca
01 May 09 |  Man City
Robinho wants to stay at Man City
22 Apr 09 |  Man City
AC Milan 'bottled Kaka transfer'
20 Jan 09 |  Man City


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