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Aston Villa cool on Mark Hughes move

Villa will not rush to appoint a new manager as they cooled their interest in Mark Hughes who had been strongly linked with the vacancy after he quit Fulham.

Villa will not rush to appoint a new manager as they cooled their interest in Mark Hughes who had been strongly linked with the vacancy after he quit Fulham.

The odds on Hughes joining Villa were dramatically slashed after a bizarre chain of events yesterday which saw him exercise a break clause in his contract at Craven Cottage.

Hughes was considered one of the main candidates to fill the position when Martin O'Neill – now favourite to replace Hughes at Craven Cottage – resigned from Villa in August last year but he had already committed himself to the London club.

But Hughes' decision to leave Fulham 24 hours after Gerard Houllier's departure from Villa was wrongly perceived as him being promised the job.

In fact, it appears that the two events were entirely coincidental and the Villa board plan to undertake a comprehensive selection process to find a replacement for Houllier who left after his health problems.

The club plan to interview several candidates and although Hughes has not been completely discarded by owner Randy Lerner, he is not necessarily the front-runner.

[24link]

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