Peter Johnson of Tigerlink ponders the issues affecting City over the next few weeks.
Wembley 28 May 2016 was an uplifting experience for fans of Hull City AFC. Mo Diame’s goal made him a hero forever in this corner of East Yorkshire. The 2017 City of Culture will have a top tier football team to display to the world.
A return to the Premier League provides glory, excitement and brief respite from our suffering at the hands of the Club’s owners who for almost 3 years now seem to have been hell bent on antagonising and driving away fans.
Empty seats at Wembley Stadium grabbed some headlines in the Championship Play-Off Final. But if truth be known the huge turnout of the Black and Amber nation was a remarkable one given what fans have had to endure. Hull City supporters have been remarkably patient and resilient. The glorious era of success at the KCOM has been tarnished by the hurtful ramblings of an ageing but powerful man and some bizarre antics from the Allam family behind the scenes. We wish Assem Allam a swift recovery from his poor health, but his family’s legacy may not quite be what he intended. We wanted to make him a hero, but he pushed us away.
So we reach the end of May with Hull City AFC apparently on the verge of a takeover from a US based buyer (with buyers from China and Thailand also reported to be showing interest), having been allegedly up for sale since the FA rebuked the owners’ ridiculous name change request two years ago and more. But typically, and suddenly, we have a less than clear statement from Ehab Allam concerning their motivation to sell. Uncertainty and confusion amidst a glorious return to the Premier League. Yes, it’s the sort of situation that Hull City fans have grown accustomed to over the years. But it’s gone too far this time and the fans deserve better.
All this with the manager considering his options. Steve Bruce probably doesn’t know who to talk to at the KCOM if he wants to discuss his future. But after months and months of displaying admirable dignity and professionalism, he may just have had enough of it all. One suspects that despite his public face to the media, working with the current owners has been a nightmare few would have endured for as long as he has. There’s a lot to be said for quitting whilst you’re ahead and whatever happens he will surely remain a legend in these parts and Hull City’s finest and most successful manager.
And amidst all of this, don’t forget we still have a discredited Membership Scheme on the table which penalises both the elderly and the young, contravening official Premier League guidelines. Is this Scheme just an instrument for Hull City’s owners to challenge the football authorities? Are they still smarting from having the name change request rejected, and are they still suffering from wounded pride? Either way we’ve had enough of it.
So let’s hope for a swift and successful resolution to these matters. Distractions off the pitch won’t be helping the players and will hardly encourage them to stay. We need to give ourselves the best chance to succeed on the pitch in what will be an incredibly tough Premier League in 2016/17.
Most City fans see us on the verge of a bright new dawn. It’s a massive opportunity. Let’s bring back the fun and happiness to all aspects of being a Hull City fan. Let the Hull City Supporters’ Trust do their job, the Club need to reconnect with fans. We’ve had enough of hitting the headlines for the wrong reasons, we’ve had protests galore, let’s hope we can start 2016/17 with joy in our hearts. We want peace and to enjoy our matchday experience to the full. The Tigers are rampant and we need to capture the momentum of a wonderful Wembley victory.
www.tigerlink.co.uk supports Hull City, a Premier League team for a Premier League city and proud home to the 2017 City of Culture. We will regularly be a focus of national attention so let’s celebrate our history, heritage and culture and make sure we make the most of the opportunities 2017 presents to boost our local economy and perceptions of Hull.