Mark Hughes addresses Bradford City future amid links to Birmingham City | OneFootball

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Football League World

·22 May 2023

Mark Hughes addresses Bradford City future amid links to Birmingham City

Article image:Mark Hughes addresses Bradford City future amid links to Birmingham City

Bradford City suffered heartbreak on Saturday as they were beaten by Carlisle United in the League Two play-off semi-final.

It was an end-to-end game between two sides that didn’t have much separating them in the regular season. Bradford took a 1-0 lead into the second leg but the Cumbrians were able to turn the tables.

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The game ebbed and flowed, with Carlisle opening the scoring early on, and that was it until extra time, which saw three goals scored, and it was Carlisle who ran out eventual winners, 3-1 and 3-2 on aggregate.

Mark Hughes on his Bradford City future

Ahead of these two crucial games, it had emerged that Birmingham City were interested in appointing Mark Hughes as manager.

The Blues are in the midst of a takeover by American businessman Tom Wagner, and it is believed he could decide to part ways with John Eustace.

Wagner is believed to be keen on bringing ex-Man City chief executive Garry Cook to the club once the takeover is complete, and this is where the possible talk of Hughes could have come from.

So, with Bradford yet to start another season in League Two, Hughes was asked after the game if he had the appetite to continue in England’s fourth division.

He told Sky Sports, via Stoke on Trent Live: “Well, yeah! I'm still contracted unless you know any different.

“We'll go again, we'll look back on this. We've not got too many fond memories of this immediate game but of the season in its entirety I think there's a lot to look back on and be proud about, so we'll see how we go.

"That was the goal, I didn't shy away from that. I never said that we started out at 15th last year so let's go for progression, I wasn't prepared to do that.

"People think you're taking them for fools if you underplay your possibilities. The expectation is something I've always worked with, so I wasn't going to downplay our chance this year.

"I think we've gone close, everyone has seen that, we're in the play-offs and the club hadn't been in the play-offs for years. We've made progress but clearly it wasn't the end goal that we wanted."

Should Mark Hughes stay at Bradford City?

It was clear to see that once Hughes stepped into the Bradford hot seat, there was instant expectation at the club that promotion would and should be achieved.

However, football doesn’t work like that, and Saturday showed that you can have a manager who, in many people’s eyes, shouldn’t be at this level, but that doesn’t mean you're automatically going to win every game.

The Bantams made good progress this season, and with more additions and some tweaks to the team, there is no doubt the club will be back at the top end of League Two again next season. So, with what he is building and what they’ve done this season, it seems best for Bradford and for Hughes that they continue their partnership heading into next season.

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