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Player revolt over Hughes sacking

A potential issue for Roberto Mancini to contend with:
Craig Bellamy and Shay Given led a six-man delegation after axed Hughes made an emotional dressing speech telling them he was being replaced by the former Inter Milan boss. There is a huge amount of loyalty towards Mark, the players respect him as a manager and as a person and they can't believe he's being treated as shabbily as this.

"This has been done without any class whatsoever. The players were getting messages on their mobiles telling them what was going on and they decided they had to do something. They know who is behind this - Gary Cook and Brian Marwood. Six of them decided they had to say and do something so they went looking for them after the game.

"Perhaps it was a futile gesture but they had to do something because they were so furious."

It is no surprise that the likes of Given, and particularly Bellamy, would have expressed their loyalty to Hughes over the decision to sack him and it will be an early test for Roberto Mancini to ensure a squad that Hughes very much attempted to mould in his image does not fragment.

Whilst there are question marks over some of Mancini's attributes, at Inter he was in charge of a very high profile squad (with plenty of ego's to match ) but by and large kept them united.

Doing the same in the early days of his City tenure will be equally as important.