Hughes believes Liverpool are vulnerable in the Premier League and City have a chance to take their place in the top four.
He said: “One team (out of the top four) is usually deemed as the most vulnerable – and currently that is Liverpool.
“It is highly unlikely to change now.
“Teams won’t be challenging for the top two or three. That is not going to happen this year.
“It probably means only one club is going to get into the top four. Maybe it will change in the future. But this season fourth place is one that is up for grabs.”
He added: “I am sure Rafa Benitez would argue about it. The game is all about opinions.
“But if we benefit from other teams not being able to get positive results then hopefully we will take the opportunity that presents itself.”