London (AFP) – Mark Hughes revealed that he apologised to his daughter after he abandoned plans to watch her play hockey for Wales at the Commonwealth Games when Premier League club Southampton came calling.
Xenna Hughes is in the Wales hockey squad for the Games, which open later Wednesday on Australia’s Gold Coast, and her father was all set to jet over and watch her in action.
But just weeks after getting the sack at Stoke City, the 54-year-old Hughes last month was suddenly back in football management at Southampton, who along with Stoke are mired in the Premier League relegation zone.
“If I’m being honest, I didn’t anticipate getting back in (management) until maybe next season. I had lots of plans, things we were going to do,” Hughes, a former Wales boss and Manchester United striker, told the BBC.
“I’m supposed to be in Australia as we speak because my daughter’s in the Commonwealth Games playing hockey for Wales so that was my big plan, I thought, ‘Oh yeah, I’ve got an opportunity to go there’.
“But there you go, I have apologised to her.”
Hughes faces a fight to keep Southampton in England’s top flight, and under Hughes they were beaten 3-0 last weekend at fellow relegation candidates West Ham United.