Mark Hughes

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Mark Hughes
13th April 1997
0Full Name Leslie Mark Hughes
0Date of Birth 1 November 1963
0Place of Birth Ruabon, Wrexham, Wales
0Position Striker
0Chelsea career 1995-1998
0Debut 19 August 1995
0Games (goals) 123 (39)
0Other clubs Manchester United
Bayern Munich (loan)
Blackburn Rovers

Mark Hughes is a former striker who played for Chelsea from 1995-98. A strong, committed and skilful centre-forward who excelled at holding the ball up, Hughes played an important part in Chelsea's success in the late 1990s.


Before Chelsea

A boyhood Chelsea fan, Hughes had a successful career with Manchester United, winning two Premier League titles, three FA Cups, a League Cup and a Cup Winners' Cup (scoring both United goals in the final). He scored 163 goals in 467 games for United, and was named PFA Player of the Year in 1989 and 1991. In between his two spells with United, he also had brief stints at FC Barcelona and Bayern Munich.

Chelsea career

Hughes joined for Chelsea in 1995 for £1.5million on the same day Ruud Gullit signed for the club. Hughes scored 12 goals in his debut season, including the only goal in a 1-0 win over Arsenal, Chelsea's last league win against Arsenal until 2005, and a hat-trick against Leeds. Despite the addition of Hughes, Gullit and Dan Petrescu, Chelsea's Premier League form remained inconsistent and they finished 11th for the third time in four years, though they did reach the FA Cup semi-finals, losing to Manchester United.

The summer of 1996 saw Gullit appointed manager and the recruitment of players such as Roberto Di Matteo, Gianluca Vialli and Gianfranco Zola; Hughes would form a sparkling strike partnership with the latter. Chelsea's league form improved and culminated in a 6th place Premier League finish, but it was in the FA Cup where he was to have his biggest impact, in particular a fourth round tie against Liverpool, in which Hughes was the catalyst as Chelsea overturned a 2-0 half-time deficit to win 4-2. He also opened the scoring in an emphatic quarter-final win over Portsmouth and hit a brace against Wimbledon in the semi-final at Highbury to send Chelsea into the final, where he helped the Blues secure their first major silverware since 1971. In doing so, Hughes became the first player since the 19th century to win the FA Cup four times. He was voted Chelsea's Player of the Year for the 1996-97 season.

In 1997-98, Hughes' biggest contribution was once again in the cups. In the first leg of a League Cup semi-final, a 2-1 loss against Arsenal, he scored with a late header to keep Chelsea in contention and then opened the scoring in the second leg as Chelsea overturned the deficit to win 4-3 on aggregate. Similarly, with Chelsea trailing on away goals in the Cup Winners' Cup semi-final against Vicenza, Hughes came on to score with a spectacular left foot volley to send Chelsea into final. He ended the season with a brace in a 4-1 win against Liverpool, his final goals for Chelsea, and then collected his third winners medal with the club in the Cup Winners' Cup final. That proved to be his Chelsea swansong, as during the close season he moved to Southampton for £650,000.

After Chelsea

Hughes stayed with Southampton for two seasons, before moving on to Everton and then Blackburn Rovers, where he collected another League Cup winners' medal in 2002. Hughes finally retired from playing in July 2002 at the age of 38, having made some 700 first team appearances and scored over 200 goals.

Hughes took his first managerial job when he was appointed manager of the Welsh national team in 1999. His tenure saw Wales beat teams such as Italy and Germany, and they narrowly missed out on qualification for Euro 2004. Hughes resigned in 2004 to take over at Blackburn. Under Hughes, Rovers finished 6th in 2005-06 and 7th in 2007-08. Hughes was linked with the vacant Chelsea job in the 2008 close season, although ultimately joined Manchester City. He was sacked in December 2009 after a poor run of results despite a substantial transfer outlay that summer financed by City's new Abu Dhabi United owners. In July 2010, Hughes was appointed manager of Fulham, but lasted just one season before resigning, citing the club's lack of ambition. In January 2012 he became manager of Queens Park Rangers.

Chelsea statistics

See also: List of Mark Hughes goals
Season Prem FA Cup League Cup Europe Other Total
Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
1995-96 31 8 6 4 2 0 0 0 0 0 39 12
1996-97 35 8 7 5 2 1 0 0 0 0 45 14
1997-98 29 9 1 0 6 2 3 1 1 1 39 13
Total 95 25 14 9 10 3 3 1 1 1 123 39

Player of the Year
1967: Bonetti | 1968: Cooke | 1969: Webb | 1970: Hollins | 1971: Hollins | 1972: Webb | 1973: Osgood | 1974: Locke
1975: Cooke | 1976: Wilkins | 1977: Wilkins | 1978: Droy | 1979: Langley | 1980: Walker | 1981: Borota | 1982: Fillery
1983: Jones | 1984: Nevin | 1985: Speedie | 1986: Niedzwiecki | 1987: Nevin | 1988: Dorigo | 1989: Roberts
1990: Monkou | 1991: Townsend | 1992: Elliott | 1993: Sinclair | 1994: Clarke | 1995: Johnsen | 1996: Gullit
1997: Hughes | 1998: Wise | 1999: Zola | 2000: Wise | 2001: Terry | 2002: Cudicini | 2003: Zola | 2004: Lampard
2005: Lampard | 2006: Terry | 2007: Essien | 2008: J.Cole | 2009: Lampard | 2010: Drogba | 2011: Čech | 2012: Mata
2013: Mata | 2014: Hazard
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