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Hughes hangs on as QPR face United test

QPR have given the clearest indication yet that Mark Hughes will be in charge for their away game at Manchester United by announcing that the under-fire manager will hold a Friday media conference.

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Rangers, who lost 3-1 to Southampton at Loftus Road on Saturday, are bottom of the Premier League with no wins in their 12 league matches.

Reports, denied by QPR, suggested the club asked Hughes to resign in the aftermath of that defeat.

However, ESPN understands Rangers are engaging in a thorough review of the situation before making any decision on the Welshman's future at Loftus Road.

"Mark Hughes is still manager of QPR, but anything can happen within 24 hours in football," a source said.

Hughes held talks with chief executive Phillip Beard on Monday night, after which Rangers were forced to deny rumours that he had been dismissed.

Harry Redknapp has failed to deny that he wants the QPR job if Hughes is sacked, while Rafa Benitez would also put himself in the frame - although his first choice would be to take the vacant post at Chelsea, even on a short-term deal.

ESPN understands that the QPR hierarchy are split on whether to sack Hughes, on whether Redknapp would be the right choice and on whether it may already be too late to avoid relegation.

Owner Tony Fernandes has been staunch in his support of Hughes despite a growing backlash from fans against the manager.

But after the Southampton defeat, Fernandes tweeted: "Let me tell you, fans come first. Everyone, including me, let the fans down. Many of us need a hard look at ourselves. QPR has amazing fans. They deserve better."

The attitude of co-owner Amit Bhatia might prove pivotal, as EPSN revealed recently that the club's wealthiest backer would consider his position if QPR go down.

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