LEE Hughes revealed how conflicting feedback over Worcester City’s plans for next season had rubber stamped his decision to quit as joint-manager.

The 41-year-old ex-West Bromwich Albion striker, who netted 15 goals in 23 appearances for City while in charge alongside John Snape this season, stood down from his first senior management post on Tuesday to join Halesowen Town in a playing capacity.

The move came hours after chairman Anthony Hampson had told the Worcester News that City could be forced to go “fully amateur” as early as next season due to the need to finance a proposed new stadium at Parsonage Way.

Hughes explained the first he had heard of that possibility had been through the press with the differing accounts from board members in the aftermath proving decisive when Halesowen made an approach for his services.

He insisted there had been “no hard feelings” over recent events but he “might have felt differently about taking over” had he known the club’s promotion ambitions could be put at risk.

“With the money situation, last year’s losses and finding out through the paper that we might not be getting a budget, I felt I needed to think about my own career,” said Hughes.

“When Halesowen came in I thought it could help me moving forward, especially on the playing side. Scoring a few goals will put me back in the shop window.

“I want to progress. If another management position comes up in the future, I think playing at a higher level will benefit me more.

“I scored 18 goals in National North last season and felt I could be effective at that standard. I felt comfortable and the only reason I stepped down so many leagues was to manage as well as play. It was a great opportunity to learn the ropes alongside Snapper.”

Asked when he had been told about the prospect of cuts, Hughes said: “It was after (Hampson’s interview in the Worcester News). I phoned to find out what was going on.

“I got told a couple of different things by different people on the board. From there you have to think about what could happen in the future.

“One board member said the budget might get cut a little bit next season. Then I got told by another board member it could get cut drastically. That made up my mind.

“We had a board meeting about a month ago when the budget was looked at. It was said that it would be okay as long as we were in contention.

“It is understandable. They are looking to get a new ground and have to do what they think best but had I known from the start I might have felt differently about taking over.

“This is not a decision I have taken lightly. John and I get on really well and I get on with the board too, there are no hard feelings.

“I have had some great years at Worcester and made friends with some great people. I wish the club all the best and hope they sort out the mess they’re in.

“I would like to thank all of the supporters and Snapper too. The amount of work he does behind the scenes is unreal.

"I think people know that but I just want to say what a pleasure it has been to work with him and the rest of the staff. They have been first class.”