Bradford City AFC is delighted to announce the appointment of Mark Hughes OBE - as the club’s new first-team manager.
The former Manchester City, Southampton, Stoke City, Fulham, QPR, Blackburn Rovers and Wales boss arrives at the Utilita Energy Stadium on a deal until the summer of 2024, having taken charge of over 450 top-flight matches.
With over 150 Premier League victories and eight top-10 finishes, Hughes boasts a record of having managed the seventh-highest total of Premier League fixtures in history.
The 58-year-old Welshman guided Rovers to a sixth-placed Premier League finish in 2005/06, reaching two FA Cup semi-finals and a League Cup semi-final over three-consecutive years at Ewood Park.
He then took the Cityzens to the UEFA Cup quarter-finals and League Cup semi-finals, before achieving three-straight ninth-placed finishes with Stoke from 2014 to 2016.
As a player, Hughes began his professional career with Manchester United in 1980, scoring 163 goals in 473 appearances across two spells and winning the Premier League (twice), FA Cup (three times), League Cup, European Cup Winners’ Cup and Super Cup.
Having also served spells at Barcelona and Bayern Munich, the English Football Hall of Fame inductee and two-time PFA Players’ Player of the Year then spent three seasons with Chelsea, scoring 39 goals in 123 games and adding another FA Cup, League Cup and Cup Winners’ Cup trophy to his cabinet.
He will observe training at the club’s Woodhouse Grove base this morning, before taking his first session tomorrow (Friday) and being in the dugout on Saturday for the Bantams’ Sky Bet League Two visit of Mansfield Town.
Hughes said: “I am really pleased to be here and am looking forward to the role, and the job in hand. It has been an exciting few days.
“It is maybe a little bit of a surprise that I have come in, but do not be put off by that!
“I am here for a reason: to make Bradford City a team people want to come and watch - and are proud to watch.
“The supporters come in their numbers, and that is the thing I have missed since being out of management. I am looking forward to the matchday, getting that adrenaline flowing and interacting with the crowd.
“Certainly, from now until the end of the year, we just want to finish strongly and see where that takes us.
“We want to move the club and everybody with it forward, and hope we can have the success everyone wants.”
City’s chief executive officer, Ryan Sparks, said: “We are delighted to have secured Mark’s services, and I am looking forward to working alongside him.
“His record and stature in the game speaks for itself, and he has achieved a great deal. To have him in our dugout is representative of the club’s ambition and desire to be successful.
“Mark expressed an interest in becoming our manager and, following talks between he, myself and Stefan (Rupp), we are today thrilled to be in a position to unveil him.
“This is without doubt one of the most significant appointments in the history of our football club. Mark recognises our true potential - and has the desire to ensure we fulfil it.
“Mark will be provided with the tools he requires in order to achieve our goals - be that in coaching, recruitment, sports science, medicine or any other area.
“He is relishing the challenges ahead and has repeatedly proven himself to thrive at elite levels of the game, in high-pressure situations.
“I hope you can join us on Saturday, when we face Mansfield Town, so Mark can be given a proper Valley Parade welcome as he leads us into the closing months of the season and beyond.”
To book your place at Saturday’s game, and see Mark Hughes take charge of the Bantams for the very first time, please CLICK HERE.