Hughes set to appointed Saints boss in EPL

Mark Hughes has been appointed manager of English Premier League club Southampton

Mark Hughes is set to be appointed manager of relegation-threatened EPL club Southampton, Press Association Sport understands.

The Saints sacked Mauricio Pellegrino on Monday with the side languishing 17th in the Premier League after an embarrassing 3-0 loss at fellow strugglers Newcastle.

The club should have their new manager in place before Sunday's FA Cup quarter-final at Wigan, with ex-Stoke boss Hughes returning to the club where he was once a player.

Discussions are well under way and Press Association Sport understands an initial deal until the end of the season is likely.

The plan is for Hughes to take training for the first time on Thursday ahead of the trip to Wigan.

The Welshman has been out of work since January when he was sacked by Stoke after four and a half years, having previously managed Wales, Blackburn, Manchester City, Fulham and QPR.

Ex-Manchester United striker Hughes played for Saints between 1998 and 2000, making 52 appearances in the Premier League.

His former Southampton team-mate Matt Le Tissier wrote on Twitter: "Whoever takes over I'd just like to see a bit more positivity in our play."

Asked about Hughes, Le Tissier said: "I think he's a very good manager and hopefully he'll do well for us."