Richard Hughes appointed as Liverpool sporting director

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Liverpool have confirmed the appointment of Richard Hughes as their new sporting director from the end of this season.

athletic It was reported earlier this month that Hughes was set to move to Liverpool, after it was announced that he would be leaving his post as Bournemouth’s technical director at the end of the season, following reports from his assistant and former club captain Simon. Francis will replace him.

Hughes was discovered by Michael Edwards, who had a long-standing desire to work with Hughes and held him in the highest esteem after watching his career and his reputation grow.

The pair have a professional and personal relationship dating back more than 20 years, dating back to when they were together at Portsmouth, when Hughes was a player and Edwards was an analyst.

Edwards was impressed when Bournemouth were able to identify and attract young talents such as Tyrone Mings, Lewis Cook, David Brooks (Liverpool watched Brooks extensively before his illness), Lloyd Kelly and Philip Billings to the south coast.

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Edwards, left, playing a senior role at FSG

“I am extremely proud to have been given this opportunity,” Hughes said. “Liverpool FC is a unique club and I am grateful for the opportunity to serve it in this capacity.

“People rightly talk about the rich history that this organization can boast, but it is the present and future that really excites me. Jurgen Klopp is leading an excellent team and squad as well as his commitment to young players and their pathway to the first team is excellent.

“I am fully aware of the expectations and responsibilities that come with holding this position. That will be my job, to work with Michael (Edwards) and lead the wider AXA Training Center staff alongside the football operations team already in place to make good decisions.

Edwards said: “I have known him professionally and personally for half my life and he is absolutely someone who embodies the best values ​​of Liverpool FC. I have full confidence in him.

“He has a track record of excellent judgment and making smart decisions that benefit the organizations he represents.”

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Transfer suitors and Edwards bonds: Why Liverpool have named Hughes sporting director

Liverpool is going through a big change Manager Jurgen Klopp’s decision to step down this summer, His closest staff are also scheduled to leave Interim sporting director Jörg Schmadtke has already left.

Edwards, however, agreed to join Liverpool owners Fenway Sports Group (FSG) as football CEO and was seen at Old Trafford for the Merseyside club’s 4-3 FA Cup defeat against Manchester United on Sunday . The former Liverpool executive will oversee the club’s football operations in his new role. FSG is also working on the transfer of Benfica technical director Pedro Marques.

Hughes’ appointment has always been dependent on FSG securing Edwards and, after giving Bournemouth notice some time ago, the ex-Scotland international has held discussions with a number of suitors since the January transfer window closed.

Edwards is known for Hughes is recognized as one of the industry’s leading operators and his gait To install Andoni Ierola as Bournemouth head coach last June Underlined his credentials.

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Although Hughes had long been seen as a potential candidate, it only became a concrete direction of travel after FSG made progress during talks with Edwards.

Since his retirement in 2014, Hughes – who played for Bournemouth between 1998 and 2002 – was part of the club’s recruitment team and was later promoted to the role of technical director.

The 44-year-old player spent time in Italy as a youth player atlanta And his knowledge of Italy and ability to navigate that market aided Bournemouth’s efforts to sign several Serie A players. Hughes is well known in domestic and overseas recruiting circles, can speak other languages ​​and has been praised for his recruitment of Bournemouth in recent years.

Hughes oversees data-driven approach to transfer Ilya Zbarny, dominic solanke, nathan ake And Aaron Ramsdale Joined the club in recent years.

His Liverpool predecessor Schmadtke was appointed by the club on an initial short-term contract last June, following the departure of previous sporting director Julian Ward, who himself had replaced Edwards just a year earlier.

Richard Hughes: a background

Hughes (centre) joined Liverpool from Bournemouth (Photo: AFC Bournemouth)

Hughes, 44, spent a decade as Bournemouth’s technical director.

He was appointed to the role in 2014 due to the strength of his relationship with former manager, Eddie Howe, whom he knew as a teenager after breaking into the club’s first team together.

after they both moved portsmouth Within a few months of each other in 2002, they met Edwards a year later when he moved to Fratton Park as a performance analyst.

Howe spent most of his two years at Portsmouth injured and this caused him to consider where his future might lie after his career ended. Both he and Hughes became close to Edwards. Although their paths diverged in the coming years, they remained connected due to the nature of their work.

As Liverpool’s sporting director, Edwards subsequently sold Jordan Ibe, Brad Smith and Solanke to Bournemouth, who were managed by Howe and installed Hughes as technical director, for considerable sums. harry wilson Also enjoyed a year on loan at the South Coast club.

After Howe left following relegation from the Premier League in 2020, Hughes remained. Since then it has been working rapidly in the European market. Some of his recent lucrative recommendations include recommendations for Dynamo Kyiv forcibly and ez alkmaar Milos KerkezPlayers who were of interest to some of the continent’s leading clubs.

(Top photo: AFC Bournemouth)

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