Richard Hughes : Liverpool’s new Sporting Director

Richard Hughes is a well known commodity among Hardcore British fans of yesteryears and some senior scouts in Italy. He played in the Atalanta youth team for about about a year and 5 years in the famed Hale End youth setup at Arsenal. Though he turned up primarily for Portsmouth in the Premier League and the now high flying AFC Bournemouth who were a League 1 side back  then while also adding 5 full Scottish caps to his name.

Richard Hughes (Credits- Anfield Watch)

On 20th March it was announced that Richard Hughes will join the Liverpool Staff as their Sporting Director as of 1st June  after departing from AFC  Bournemouth. After initially joining their recruitment team under the now high flying Newcastle United boss Eddie Howe working his way up eventually becoming their technical director which has eventually led them to become what some might argue as the surprise package of the season.

Richard Hughes(Left) Michael Edwards(Right) (Credits-GiveMeSport)

He is part of the restructuring of Liverpool’s  backroom staff  which is being masterminded by none other than their former sporting director Michael Edwards, who is going to have a second stint with Reds, only this time as their CEO. Behind the scenes, he might have to carry out one of the most difficult jobs in their recent history which is to find a suitable replacement for their legendary manager Jurgen Klopp who is departing Anfield after 9 years of glory .

Having a competent figure to seamlessly ensure the said transition from Klopp to a New Manager which would also mean a complete shakeup in their both long term vision and mission as well as their day to day working  means that if they get it right, it would seem like nothing has changed. 

Though things can also go out of hand as Manchester United fans will tell you their ordeal after Sir Alex Ferguson left and they could not replace the Scottish Legend for the longest of times and are still figuring it out to this day. Richard Hughes has been brought in to avoid such a fate and instead carry on the good work upon the foundations laid by Klopp and Co. but with their own twist and Edwards has vouched that he is the right man to do so as per reports.

Liverpool sporting director Julian Ward to leave at end of season
Julian Ward (Credit -

It is to be noted that Liverpool have been without a permanent Sporting director since Julian Ward left them last summer. In the meanwhile,  the club decided to enlist the support of German football executive Jordi Schmadtke to help out Klopp during the summer transfer window, which witnessed the arrival of notable signings such as Alexis Mac Allister, Dominik Szoboszlai, Wataru Endo, and Ryan Gravenberch among others. 

Hughes would hope to carry on their legacy of making smart, shrewd signings and build upon a sustainable model which can ensure that the likes of current legends in Mo Salah and Virgil can be adequately replaced at least on the pitch even though their wealth of experience and their presence and aura would not be possible to replicate. 

Though with some shrewd signing of senior players taking Wataru Endo for example, such signings may miss the eye of a normal football fan. But a sporting director like Richard Hughes can ensure that systems are put into place so that maximum output can be achieved on and off the pitch alike.

Klopp (Credits- Sky Sports)

As a current Premier League gaffer once quipped that Eras do come to an end, it is also important to note that he done a rebuild job under far worse circumstances and fewer resources at his disposal so competence or lack of thereof is clearly a non issue. The only possible worry could be that these boots might be to big to fill, but unless you end up stepping into those boots you would never be able to find out. Hindsight is a wonderful thing.

Cover Credits - The Times

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