Forest Green owner Dale Vince hits out at Portsmouth after Richard Hughes move


Forest Green chairman Dale Vince has hit out at Portsmouth after director of football Richard Hughes left to join Pompey.

The 34-year-old will become Portsmouth’s new sporting director next month after almost five years at the New Lawn.

Portsmouth had initially tried to sign Hughes in May before he stayed at Rovers and Vince is upset with their Sky Bet League One rivals’ conduct.

“This is an opportunity Rich wanted to take and we never stand in the way of our people’s progression, staff or players. We appreciate all that Rich has done in his time here and wish him well on this next step,” he told the club’s official site.

“However, this is the second time that Portsmouth have made an approach and the second time they have done so in breach of EFL regulations. We expected better.

“The rules are clear, clubs must not approach staff or players of other clubs before having written consent. Portsmouth disregarded this rule again. They approached Rich before asking for permission let alone before getting it. This aspect of football needs to change.”

Hughes will have responsibility for recruitment and football operations at Fratton Park.

Pompey chief executive Andrew Cullen said: “We’re delighted to have appointed Richard as the club’s sporting director.

“This role is crucial for our longer-term football strategy and provides an oversight for all our football operations, easing some of the day-to-day operational pressures on Danny and Nicky (Cowley).

“He has a history of identifying emerging talent who have gone on to enjoy success in the professional game.”

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