Mark Bowen spoke for the first time today as manager of Reading, having replaced Jose Manuel Gomes who departed last week.
With the club 22nd in the Championship and without a win since August, the Reading board felt it was time to part ways with Gomes who was appointed in December last year.
One of the initial favourites to take over from Gomes at Reading was Mark Hughes – who Bowen had previously worked as number two to at several clubs.
But Bowen was announced as the club’s new manager yesterday, stepping up from the role of Sporting Director at the club to get his first taste of first-team management.
Speaking about Hughes today, Bowen said:
“I haven’t spoken to Mark and I wouldn’t have thought he would be joining us.
“He is enjoying his time off and playing a lot of golf but he never came into my thinking. He is enjoying the sunshine too much.”
Hughes has been out of a job since being sacked by Southampton in December of last year, but hadn’t been linked with any vacancies until the Reading rumours.
Hughes’ appointment would’ve been met with strong criticism from fans. His managerial record has been free-falling for a number of years, and he’s no longer recognised as a top manager.
How Bowen will do in his first managerial job is unknown. Reading fans aren’t too keen on Bowen either, but they’ll have to get behind him as they look to claw themselves out of the relegation zone.