Bayern Munich eye up old boy Mark Hughes to replace Louis van Gaal as manager

17 March 2011 08:49
Mark Hughes has emerged as a target for Bayern Munich after being included on theirshortlist of contenders to replace the outgoing Louis van Gaal.

Hughes forged a close relationship with Bayern president Uli Hoeness during his stintthere as a player in 1987-88 and has caught the eye with the way he has the steadied the ship at Fulham this season in the Barclays Premier League.

As an added attraction for Bayern, Hughes is out of contract at the end of the season and could be lured away as a free agent.

Then and now: Hughes patrols the touchline at Craven Cottage (left) and appeals during his Bayern pomp

Another candidate is Bayer Leverkusen coach Jupp Heynckes, who has receivedstrong support after reviving the 2002 Champions League finalists' fortunes and steering them into second place behind leaders Dortmund. 

Hughes signed a one-year deal when he replaced Roy Hodgson at the helm at Craven Cottage last summer.

And Bayern are said to be exploring the possibility that Hughes can can depart at the end of this season without compensation being paid.

All change: Bayern, who crashed out of the Champions League last week at home to Inter Milan, are looking for a new boss

Hughes, 47, has long been mooted as one of the potential successors to hiss former Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson at Old Trafford when he retires.

He began his managerial career brightly and during a five-year spell in charge of Wales in what was his first job as boss, he came close to leading his country to Euro 2004 - only to lose in a play-off to Russia.

Hughes then moved onto Blackburn, consolidating them as a Premier League club and guiding Rovers to three semi-finals before he quit for Manchester City in 2008.

Going places: Hughes is highly admired across Europe for his coaching work

But after just over one year in charge at Eastlands, having arrived when the club was taken over by oil-rich Abu DhabiUnited Group and granted him millions to spend on new players includingRobinho and Carlos Tevez, Hughes was sacked and replaced in December 2009 by Roberto Mancini.

He has since rebuilt his reputation despite a rocky patch before the New Year and has lead Fulham to 11th in the Barclays Premier League and in with a chance of Europa League football next season.

Bayern are keeping a close eye on the situation ahead of what could be a bold move to appoint him at the Allianz Arena this summer.

 'Bad' idea or Thriller for Fulham? Club announce plans for Michael Jackson statue at Craven CottageGolden Oldies: Why are goalkeepers playing well into their 40s?All the latest Fulham news, features and opinion

 Explore more:People: Louis Van Gaal, Mark Hughes, Alex Ferguson, Carlos Tevez, Roy Hodgson, Roberto Mancini Places: Wales, Russia

Source: Daily_Mail