Richard Hughes named new Liverpool sporting director

Richard Hughes spent a decade as Bournemouth's technical director

Liverpool have appointed Richard Hughes as their new sporting director; the 44-year-old will start his new role on June 1; first task for Hughes will be to find a successor for departing Reds manager Jurgen Klopp, who leaves Anfield at the end of the season.

Richard Hughes has been confirmed as Liverpool's new sporting director and will start his new role at the end of this season.

Hughes, 44, spent a decade as Bournemouth's technical director, before recently resigning from his role and is Michael Edwards's first appointment since being named Fenway Sports Group's [FSG] CEO of Football.

Hughes replaces Jorg Schmadtke, who took on the role last May, but only in a short-term basis before leaving after the January transfer window.

Edwards has had a long-standing desire to work with Hughes and they have a professional and personal relationship spanning over 20 years having previously worked together during Hughes's playing career at Portsmouth, when Edwards was the south coast club's head analyst under then manager Harry Redknapp.

Hughes arrives at Liverpool with a proven track record of signing young players - he brought the likes of Nathan Ake, Dominic Solanke, Callum Wilson and Aaron Ramsdale to Bournemouth - while he also speaks three languages and has good contacts in both France and Italy, where he grew up.

Intriguingly, Hughes knows the agent of reported Liverpool managerial target Xabi Alonso having brought another of his clients, Andoni Iraola, to the Vitality last summer, while he was also reportedly keen for Roberto De Zerbi - another man understood to be on the shortlist to replace Jurgen Klopp - to manage Bournemouth.

It is understood when Julian Ward left his role as Liverpool's sporting director last summer, Edwards was surprised Hughes was not one of the candidates to be interviewed by club owners FSG.