Another interesting week for Hull City AFC. Harry Drew summarises.
Despite being in the Championship City’s squad still boasts a number of internationals, many of whom featured for their countries during the week. Mo Diame started and scored for Senegal in a 2-0 win over Niger last Saturday and also featured in the return fixture on Tuesday, which Senegal won 2-1. Adama Diomande, a player who has yet to make his mark with City, played 45 minutes in Norway’s 2-0 win over Finland on Tuesday.
Elsewhere David Meyler started in Ireland’s win over Switzerland; McGregor, Robertson and Snodgrass all started as Scotland beat the Czech Republic, while Shaun Maloney played 68 minutes in the win over Denmark on Tuesday; and Chuba Akpom scored in England U21’s one-all draw with Switzerland last Saturday. Frustratingly, Abel Hernandez travelled 14,000 miles to play precisely zero minutes of football for Uruguay.
There was a potentially significant development for fans on Friday as news was leaked regarding changes to City’s new membership scheme. To say that the new scheme has had a mixed reception is an understatement, so we should perhaps be cautiously optimistic that the club is considering alterations. However, City have released nothing official, and the details remain elusive.
On Tuesday the inevitable happened as Remi Garde left Aston Villa following a miserable five month tenure. This has renewed speculation about Steve Bruce’s future with City, with several news outlets reporting that Bruce is on Villa’s preliminary shortlist. Bruce said during the week that the thought of leaving the club before the end of the season makes him feel “physically sick”, virtually ruling out an immediate departure. Bruce’s long-term future is surely dependent on whether or not City return to the Premier League next month.
Back to on-the-field matters, and City returned to winning ways with a thumping 4-0 victory over Bristol City on Saturday. The Robins did not look like a side who had won four of their last five away matches, but the inadequacy of the opposition should not detract from what was a cracking City performance, the likes of which we haven’t seen for a long time. Diame and Aluko looked sharp up front and the back-line was only sporadically threatened by the away side.
Where does this leave City’s hopes of automatic promotion? Just about intact. The Tigers remain four points behind Middlesbrough following their victory over QPR, while the deficit to Burnley is now seven points after they drew at third placed Brighton on Saturday. City do have a game in hand over the league leaders, however, and have the easiest run-in of the top four teams on paper. The hardest looking game is tomorrow night at Derby, who are themselves scrambling to get into the play-offs having been chasing the top two for much of the season. At least a place in the top six now looks assured for City.
Harry Drew @hdrew95