Hughes insisted he had no qualms about recalling Ireland for the suspended Jon Walters amid on-going talks over a new two-year contract before he becomes a free agent in the summer.
"This was always a game I felt he could do well in," Hughes explained. "He could have scored on a couple of occasions and always gives you that threat.
"Maybe because his career hasn't gone as well as he would have always liked people are too quick to question him as a player and a person.
"But when you see him play like that you understand why I appreciate him so much."
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