Mark Hughes confirmed as new Queens Park Rangers manager
Mark Hughes has been confirmed as the new manager of Queens Park Rangers on a two-and-a-half-year deal.
The Welshman was made the favourite to take the job at Loftus Road after the sacking of Neil Warnock on Sunday.
"I'm fully aware of the challenge in the short and long term and I am genuinely excited about the ambition of the owners," Hughes said.
HUGHES' START AS QPR BOSS
- 15 January v Newcastle (a)
- 17 January v MK Dons (FA Cup third round replay, (h)
- 21 January v Wigan (h)
- 1 February v Aston Villa (a)
- 4 February v Wolves (h)
- 11 February v Blackburn (a)
"The immediate priority is to consolidate our place in the Premier League. The future is very bright."
The 48-year-old, who will lead first-team training later on Tuesday, added that the role filled him with "great enthusiasm".
Hughes, who has has previously managed Wales, Blackburn Rovers and Manchester City, left Fulham in June citing his desire "to further my experiences" as "a young, ambitious manager".
QPR lie 17th in the Premier League and have gone eight league games without a win, last picking up three points with a 3-2 win at Stoke on 19 November.
Club chairman Tony Fernandes, who completed his takeover in August, believes Hughes' desire to prove himself makes him the ideal appointment.
"Mark has a proven track record in the Premier League, bringing a wealth of experience at both club and international level," he said.
"He has a great passion to achieve as a manager and has already been hugely successful in his career.
"His ambitions match those of the board and we are delighted to have him at the helm."
QPR were promoted back to the top flight last season under Warnock and made an encouraging start to the season.
They were ninth after the victory at Stoke but have failed to win since then and have slid to within one point of the relegation zone.
They also needed a last-minute equaliser from Heidar Helguson to avoid an FA Cup third-round defeat by League One side MK Dons on Saturday.
Hughes' first managerial role was with Wales, taking them to within one game of qualifying for Euro 2004.
The former Manchester United and Barcelona striker subsequently took over at Blackburn and, after avoiding relegation in his first season, managed three successive top-10 finishes, attracting the attention of Manchester City in June 2008.
After the Abu Dhabi Group's takeover of the club three months later, Hughes oversaw a spending spree that included the recruitment of Brazilian playmaker Robinho for £32.4m, a British record at the time.
The likes of Emmanuel Adebayor, Joleon Lescott and Carlos Tevez followed, but Hughes' results failed to match the owners' expectations and he was fired in December 2009 with City sixth in the Premier League.
QPR striker Tommy Smith told BBC Radio 5 live that he was delighted with the club's choice of manager.
MARK HUGHES' CAREER
- Playing career takes in spells at Manchester United (twice), Barcelona, Bayern Munich, Chelsea, Everton, Blackburn, Southampton and Wales
- Scores 163 goals in 606 club appearances. Wins 72 caps for Wales, scoring 16 times
- Appointed part-time Wales manager in 1999
- Becomes Blackburn manager in 2004
- Appointed manager of Manchester City in 2008
- Sacked by Manchester City in December 2009
- Appointed Fulham boss in July 2010, leads them to eighth in Premier League
- Announces resignation from Fulham in June 2011
- Appointed QPR boss in January 2012
"We are very pleased," said Smith. "We were shocked to hear of Neil Warnock's departure on Sunday. It came slightly out of the blue but after that everyone wanted a quick appointment.
"To get someone of Mark's calibre, and to get him so quickly, is great news.
"Mark popped into the training ground this afternoon for a meeting. He sat us down, and introduced himself and his backroom staff.
"He talked about the challenges ahead, what he is going to bring to the club and what challenges he is going to set us as players.
"To get a manager who has played at the highest level and managed big teams is great for everyone concerned, particularly the players.
"We signed a fair bit of Premiership experience at the end of August but a lot of the players haven't been at this level for too long.
"So to work with someone like Mark every day, with the wealth of experience he has…it is exciting times."