Sven-Goran Eriksson's Departure: Worst-Kept Secret in Football

Barney CorkhillSenior Writer IJune 2, 2008

Today Sven-Goran Eriksson has been shown the door, put in the car, driven to the airport, and flown all the way to Mexico.

That's right, Thaksin Shinawatra today confirmed what everyone had known since he sensationally announced he would be review Sven's performance as manager.

Everyone was amazed when he said this, as it was most people's opinion that Eriksson had worked wonders at Eastlands.

They had been transformed from the most boring team in the league to, on occasions, one of the most exciting.

Of course, results such as the 8-1 drubbing by Middlesbrough didn't help his case, but Shinawatra is partly to blame for that as well. His revelation disrupted the team without a doubt, and, had he not said that, I am confident that Manchester City would have had a better end to the season.

And if the players didn't know that the match against Middlesbrough was to be Sven's last competitive game in charge, they would have played it like any other, and wouldn't have got so soundly beaten.

But he's gone now, and looks set to become manager of Mexico, another line to his already impressive CV. I can see Mexico sneaking into the top ten in the FIFA rankings under Sven.

But as for the replacement for Manchester City, one name has dominated it: Mark Hughes.

The more I think about it, the more it doesn't make sense. Mark Hughes has transformed Blackburn from boring 14th place finishers to exciting Europe contenders. He is, without doubt, a very good manager.

So it makes sense why City want him, but why would he want them? He has reportedly asked to be allowed to speak to them. Again, why?

He is at a better club at the moment, with a better chairman.

I have no doubt that in the coming years Man City will pose a real threat to the top four. Shinawatra seems willing to splash the cash, and after being linked with big names such as Deco, Ronaldinho, and Eto'o—it's just a matter of time before they challenge.

So they have bags of potential. Is that the reason Hughes wants the job then? Well, recently he has been linked with Chelsea, a team who have fulfilled the potential, have even more money than City, and have a ready-made title challenging squad.

And, within the next three years when Sir Alex Ferguson finally packs it in, he will be heavily linked with the Man United job, another team who are title challengers every year, and who still have potential to fill with the young players coming through.

Also, Manchester United is his old club. Hughes managing at Manchester City would be like Kevin Keegan going to manage at Everton. Some of the fans wouldn't forgive him, and the years of goal scoring he achieved for them would be overshadowed.

Mark Hughes has to take a risk whatever he chooses to do. Either risk not being offered the Man Utd job in the future, for the sake of the Man City job, in the hope that City could fulfill their potential and Shinawatra remains loyal to the club.

Or, stay at Blackburn in the hope that a Chelsea job or a Man Utd job comes knocking at his door in the future.