Lee Hughes: AFC Telford United sign veteran striker after Worcester City exit
AFC Telford United have signed Lee Hughes following his sudden exit from non-league neighbours Worcester City.
The much-travelled 40-year-old former West Bromwich Albion and Coventry City striker had expressed interest in succeeding Carl Heeley as manager of the National League North club.
But instead he has opted to move to Shropshire for the rest of the season.
"I've always enjoyed playing Telford. I've scored a few against them over the years," Hughes told BBC Shropshire.
"I had a great time at Worcester, met some great people and scored quite a few goals, but I found out the club was in financial difficulty and that they'd got to get rid of a lot of players and I was one of them. I decided to speak to them about it and they were happy for me to go."
There is a possible option to extend the arrangement beyond the end of this season if Hughes helps Telford to stay in National League North.
The Bucks currently stand 19th, just two points clear of trouble, and a point behind Worcester in the battle to avoid relegation.
Hughes told BBC Hereford & Worcester last weekend that he would be interested in succeeding the long-serving Heeley, who stood down after 22 years with the club.
"I'd be up for it," he said after Worcester's 1-1 home draw with Tamworth. "I've spoken to the board about it and outlined my ideas to them."
But, 22 years on from his debut at Kidderminster Harriers, he also made it clear that he was keen to carry on playing, admitting: "I just love scoring goals.
"I've still got a few years left in me. I've got 14 goals in 20 starts this season. For now, I'm just looking forward to trying to keep Telford up. But, if I can keep feeling sharp, then I hope to carry on."
Hughes, who scored 203 league goals with seven different clubs, spent three years out of the game when sent to prison in August 2004 for causing death by dangerous driving.
He moved back to non-league football with Forest Green in January 2014, after which he returned to Kidderminster before, after a brief stop at Ilkeston, moving on to Worcester in September 2015.
He is expected to make his Telford debut at league-leaders Fylde on Saturday.
Hughes is now scheduled to meet up with Worcester again in a Telford shirt at the Bucks Head on Saturday, 1 April.
Lee Hughes was talking to BBC Radio Shropshire's Nick Southall.