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Launch Edition! January 2013

Ten years, four divisions... Andy Dawson on a decade with the club

Where are they now?

Life after the Tigers with Stuart Green

The Season So Far... A+ for Bruce? Or “must do better”?

Transfer Talk Stuart Elliott Premier League Days


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Contents 4 10 14 23 30 38 44

January 2013

Magazine Features:

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Looking Back

Stuart Elliott looks back on his eventful six years with the club.

Where Are They Now? Stuart Green talks about his time with the Tigers, as well as his new role as a manager.

December Review We look back over the month of December and a hectic Christmas period for Steve Bruce’s men.

January Transfer Talk BBC Radio Humberside’s Matt Dean looks at some potential January targets for the Tigers.

A Decade at the KC Stadium We look back on a turbulent first decade for the club at the KC.

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Ten Years, Four Divisions Andy Dawson chats about 10 years with the club, a decade which has included playing in every division of English football with the Tigers.

Half Season Review

44

At the half way point, we review the first five months of the season.

48

The Premier League Days With the club well placed for a return to the Premier League, we reminisce about the clubs previous spell in the top flight, with Phil Brown.

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Stuart Elliott

LOOKING BACK WITH STUART ELLIOTT When Stuart Elliott first walked through the doors of Boothferry Park back in July 2002 few could have predicted the impact he would have on the club in the years to come.

B

oothferry Park may not have stood the test of time, but Stuarts career in the black and amber shirt surely will and it goes without saying that no tigers fan will ever forget the part that he played in a crucial period in the clubs history.

Despite being the second most expensive signing in the club’s history at the time, Elliott arrived in East Yorkshire something of an unknown quantity. He’d had spells with Glentoran in his native Northern Ireland, before moving onto Motherwell in the Scottish Premier League. However, from the moment he scored on his debut against Southend United, he became a massive hit with the Tigers fans. This was a status which never changed during his time with the club, with his down to earth nature and openness about his religious beliefs adding to his charm.

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Elliott maintains to this day that his arrival at Hull City was down to a message from God, and for that divine intervention, Tiger’s fans will always be thankful. His 68 goals in 211 games helped fire the Tigers from League Two into the Premier League and his miracle season of 2004/2005, where he scored 27 league goals from the left of midfield, will live long in the memory. From Boothferry to Wembley magazine caught up with Stuart recently to discuss his eventful six year stint with the club, as well as life after the Tigers. When City boss at the time, Jan Molby, brought Elliott to the club in the pre-season of 2002/2003, expectations were high. City were the big spenders of League Two and it was anticipated that a promotion campaign was inevitable. Unfortunately things didn’t go to plan, and despite Elliott impressing from the left of midfield, the rest of the team were struggling to produce the the kind of results expected of a side that would be challenging for promotion. Molby was sacked after just a few months in charge and it wasn’t an ideal start to Elliott’s time with the club.


Stuart Elliott “Jan knew what he wanted and he knew the sort of football he wanted, there were just aspects which were unfortunate at times. For example if you look back to the opening day of that season, if we’d have walked away winning that game it would have given us massive momentum. But of course losing that goal late on, that’s football sometimes, but we go into the next game with a bit more pressure being the favorites for promotion.” Peter Taylor stepped in to replace Molby and following a mid table finish that season, Taylor took City up in his first full season in charge, with Elliott playing a key role from the left flank scoring 14 league goals. City did also move into the KC Stadium at this time, something Elliott feels contributed greatly to the Tiger’s success. “A big aspect of us doing well was the brand new stadium,” Elliott admits

“The momentum that the move brought was incredible, it was a great platform for us at the time. Teams were intimidated of coming to us and playing in front of crowds of around 15-16000.”

“We managed to make our home at the KC a fortress and it was hard for teams to come and get a result. To play in a stadium like that in League Two was a dream for me personally.” One night City fans will never forget that season, was the 1-0 home win over Swansea which sent the Tigers top of the league. Elliott got the winner that night and it is a memory which he looks back on fondly, despite being somewhat under the weather.

“I actually had the flu that night and I remember thinking if there’s one place I don’t want to be right now its on a football field,” he laughs “I managed to drag myself out and it turned out to be a fantastic game. It was the night that really got our season kick started and we were flying after that.” City went on to gain promotion that season as runners up to Doncaster Rovers. Playing in League One the following season was expected to provide Peter Taylor’s side with a sterner test, and few would have anticipated that the club would go on and earn promotion to the Championship. Not only was it a season where City exceeded expectations as a team, but on a personal level it was a fantastic season for Elliott who went on to score 27 league goals, despite missing six weeks through injury. “We didn’t know what to expect going into that season,” admits Elliott “We knew we had ability, the manager actually played down our chances to take the pressure off us. We went into it quietly confident and it turned out to be another fantastic season for us.” 27 league goals for a midfielder is also a tremendous achievement, something Elliott puts down to his Christian faith. “I believe as a Christian it was a miracle. If you look at some of my goals that

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Stuart Elliott City did manage to survive comfortably in the end that season, with Elliott finding the net seven times in all competitions. His goals included a stunning 25 yard lob to give City a 1-0 win at Plymouth, as well as scoring at Bramwall Lane against Sheffield United in a fiery local derby. That summer manager Peter Taylor left the club for pastures new and he was replaced by Phil Parkinson. Things didn’t go to plan for City under the reign of Parkinson and he was sacked after less than six months in charge, a period Elliott likened to Jan Molby’s time with the Tigers. “Again I think it was just unfortunate what happened during Phil’s time with the club,” he said. “It was very similar to when Jan was in charge, in the sense that if we’d made a good start we could have pushed on with the momentum. Because we made a poor start to the season we never really got going and it was a shame things didn’t work out for Phil as he is a good manager. That’s football sometimes.”

season there was definitely some luck about them, the one that sticks out in my mind was the cross at home against Luton which ended up in the top corner.” City were promoted that year with three games to spare, but the next season was to prove a bigger step up for Elliott and his City team mates. The team’s main objective of their first season in the Championship was to stay up as City knew they were no longer a big fish in a small pond, something which could have been said when playing in League One and Two. There were much bigger clubs in the Championship than what City had previously been playing against in and Elliott admits it was always going to be a steep learning curve when making the step up this time around.

“I don’t think the step up from League Two to League One was too difficult but when you hit the Championship its a completely different level.”

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ELLIOTT FACTFILE Date of birth : 23rd July 1978 (age 34) Place of birth : Belfast, Northern Ireland Height : 5ft 10in (1.78m) Position : Left winger Current Club : Unnattached (retired)

CLUB Career

Years

Club

1998-2000 Glentoran 2000-2002 Motherwell 2002-2008 Hull City 2008 (loan) Doncaster Rovers 2008-2010 Doncaster Rovers 2009 (loan) Grmisby Town 2010 Hamilton Academical 2010 (loan) Stirling Albion

INTERnational Career 2000-2007

Northern Ireland

Apps

Gls

162 70 193 10 9 11 5 7

51 22 65 0 0 2 0 1

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Stuart Elliott

City avoiding relegation on the last day of that season meant the club was then sold and Phil Brown, who had taken over from Phil Parkinson as caretaker, was given the job on a permanent basis. This spelt the beginning of the end of Elliott’s City career as Brown began to make his own signings that summer and at the start of the 07/08 season Elliott was finding it difficult to make it into the first eleven. It is a time Elliott looks back on with some sadness, but it was always likely to happen as the club looked to take the next step move forward.

“It was a very difficult time for as we were starting to build a massive squad and my form hadn’t quite been what it was in previous seasons,” “Having said that, I did come into the team against Wigan and played well, scoring the winner, and I felt I did enough to retain my place. I was a little bit disappointed to be dropped after that. I understand though it was a new regime with new players and all good things have to come to an end.” Elliott left the club that winter and joined Doncaster Rovers on loan before completing a permanent move the following summer. With City earning promotion that season Elliott admits it was mixed emotions for himself to see the club he had only just departed to now be playing in the Premier League.

Since leaving City, Elliott has had a spells with Doncaster and a few Scottish clubs before hanging up his boots in 2010 and returning to Hull for a reason other than football. Elliott has traded his job in football to follow his beliefs in his religion by becoming a pastor at a Christian Ministry in Hull. It is something Elliott always felt he would do after football and following a difficult few years on the pitch he felt it was time to call it a day and take the next step. “Its always been something I knew I wanted to do after football and when I was invited to become a pastor in Hull it felt the right time to make the transition from football into my next step in life, which will be placing all my energies into the things of Christ.” Elliott also see’s his future in Hull and hasn’t ruled out one day returning to football in some capacity. “All the bad press about Hull as a place is nonsense. Hull is the place I call home now, my children have grown up here and it is a place I see myself and my family staying for many years. If one day I can take up a role at Hull City then that is something I wouldn’t rule out.”

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Stephen Quinn

KEEPING IT in the family A

With Stephen Quinn

s the youngest sibling in a family which included six sisters and eight brothers, Stephen Quinn never had to look far for a role model when growing up. Quinn and his family grew up on a council estate in Dublin and he and his brothers spent any spare time they had kicking a ball around in the street. It was his brother Alan who Stephen looked up to the most, and in 1997 Alan moved out of the family home, and to England, to sign for Sheffield Wednesday. Seeing his brother follow his dreams of becoming a professional footballer by playing in the Premier League for Wednesday helped Stephen decide that his only desire was to follow in his brother’s footsteps. Stephen went on to earn a bright reputation with Dublin’s famous Cherry Orchard Boys club, a team which both Andy Reid and Keith Fahey played for as youngsters. Quinn never gave up on his dream of playing

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professional football and despite leaving school and working on a building site, he finally got his chance when he was offered a youth contract by Sheffield United. Then, following Sheffield Wednesday’s relegation from the Premier League, Alan was signed by Neil Warnock and crossed the steel city to join his brother at Bramwall Lane. Keeping it in the family, the youngest brother Keith was then also signed by Warnock as an apprentice, meaning the club had a trio of brothers on the books. Unfortunately things didn’t work out for Keith and he went back home to Ireland to play for Cork City. Alan and Stephen played together for Sheffield United for four seasons, before Alan left to join Ipswich. Alan had struggled to get much first team action for the Blades towards the end of his time with the club, with Stephen managing to keep him out of the starting eleven while the club

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were in the Premier League. Stephen stayed with United during both the subsequent relegation campaigns that followed which eventually saw the club playing in League One. With City well placed this season, Quinn’s move to the Tigers back in August gives him the possibility of a return to the big time, something he will surely relish. City’s squad this season is no stranger to an Irish international or two, with David Meyler, Robbie Brady and Paul McShane all regulars for the Republic Of Ireland, however a cap for his country has so far eluded Quinn. This could be the last piece of the jigsaw for Stephen, and should the club get back into the Premier League for next season, his chances of a call up will surely increase. With the World Cup coming in 2014, it would be a great time for Quinn to get his first call up, and follow in his brothers footsteps by representing his country.


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Where Are They Now?

Where are they Now? WITH STUART GREEN

When Stuart Green left Hull City to join Peter Taylor’s Crystal Palace in the summer of 2006 many Hull City fans were disappointed.

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s an integral part of the side that had helped City gain back to back promotions, as well as survive their first season in the Championship, the fans saw Green’s departure as a great loss. The ex-Newcastle United trainee’s time with the Tigers wasn’t without controversy and as a flair player, many times his style and attitude divided opinion amongst supporters. Having said that, as all good flair players do, Green possessed a natural quality on the field in pivotal moments of games and this had a knack of winning over those who doubted his place in the team. For this, as well as his major role in helping City to back to back promotions, Green will always be remembered by Hull City fans. From Boothferry to Wembley Magazine spoke with Stuart recently, looking back on his time with the Tigers, as well as the change in direction his career has taken since leaving the club.

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Green was originally signed on loan from Newcastle United by City manager at the time, Jan Molby, in the pre season of 2002. Despite scoring on his debut it would be fair to say Green was one of the players who struggled to settle under Molby, but the introduction of Peter Taylor just three months into that season seemed to breath new life into his performances. Taylor moved Green from his wide right position he had previously been playing under Molby and into the centre of midfield, his preferred position. From here Green was able to play the classic number ten role, linking up play between the midfield and the strikers and with Green being a key figure of the team, City's performances and results improved. City were still playing at Boothferry Park at this point, a time which Green looks back on with fondness. “I remember when Peter first came in, he changed things up a bit. This was one of my favorite times at Hull,”


Where Are They Now? “Moving into the centre of midfield I was able to influence games more, and I always remember the passion at Boothferry Park. I’d never played in front of crowds like that at that point of my career and it was a real buzz.” Green soon had to get used to playing in front of even bigger crowds as City moved into the KC Stadium that winter.The KC’s first ever league game on Boxing Day drew in 22,000 fans, a day Green remembers well having scored the second in a 2-0 win against league leaders Hartlepool. “I remember that day like yesterday,” he admits. “It was a bit surreal, to go from playing at Boothferry Park in front of 10,000 people one week, to playing in a stadium like the KC in front of twice as many fans the week after was crazy “It was amazing to score as well, it was just a fantastic occasion for us all to be a part of.” Something then went terribly wrong for Green at Hull City, and by the end of February he found himself out on loan at former club Carlisle United. An argument with Peter Taylor had seen him left out of the squad for a home game against Lincoln City. Before the fans knew it Green had been sent out on loan to Brunton Park, just weeks after City had payed £150,000 to make his loan from Newcastle United permanent. Green explains his part in the drama as a mixture of being homesick, and a fall out with Peter Taylor. ”What happened was me the gaffer had a disagreement about my performance when we played Southend away.” he admits

“We are both stubborn people and neither would back down. Before I knew it I was offered the chance to go back to Carlisle, they wanted me so I went” “I was young back then and been away from home was difficult. Having said that, as soon as I got to Carlisle I realised I’d made a massive mistake and I knew from there I had to get back to Hull City and resolve things.” Green’s desperation to return from his spell at Carlisle ended with him being thrown off the team coach on an away trip to Torquay, which led to his loan spell being terminated. Although he didn’t play again for the Tigers that season, things were resolved with Peter Taylor and Green went on to play a key role in City’s promotions in the following two seasons. He also played a pivotal role in City’s survival in their first season in the Championship, scoring some important goals along the way. That following summer Peter Taylor left the club for Crystal Palace, eventually taking Green with him for a cut price deal of £75,000. Green admits leaving the Tigers was a tough decision, but he has no regrets making the move, despite not actively seeking a transfer at that time. “I was very happy in Hull,” he admits.

“It was easily the best period of my career. I had a great relationship with the fans and the club itself, so of course I was disappointed to leave” “I didn’t really want to leave but the chairman Adam Pearson wanted me out so the new manager did as he was told and I didn’t really have much choice in the matter. When your no longer wanted you move on.” Green endured a mixed time with Crystal Palace, with injuries limiting his playing time during his two seasons with club. He then joined Blackpool but only made a handful of appearances for them before Peter Taylor signed him for Wycombe Wanderers. Again injuries limited his appearances and Green left Wycombe after two seasons, playing just 15 times during his spell with the club. Having endured a tough time with injuries Green then decided to call a day on his professional playing career at just 30 years of age. He joined non league Workington Reds and spent a season playing there before eventually deciding he wanted to move into football management. “Calling a day on my professional playing career was a tough decision. I always knew that I wanted to stay in football in some capacity and after playing non league for a year at Workington I decided it was time to try my hand at management.” Green was given the opportunity by Whitehaven Amateurs and so far it has been a challenge that he has enjoyed. ”I’m really enjoying it at the moment. Its my first season in charge and we’re set for our greatest league finish in the clubs history. Hopefully we can gain promotion this season and try and do well in a higher division next season.” Having no real aspirations of playing professionally again due to his injury problems, Green is planning to get his coaching badges and become a manager in the football league. “To be a successful manager in the Football League is my plan, to manage a former club would be the dream.” issue 1

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Championship Stats Page

STATS 2012/2013 Top GoalScorers Player

Club

Glenn Murray Jordan Rhodes Charlie Austin Matej Vydra Thomas Ince Chris Wood David Nugent Marlon King Billy Sharp Sone Aluko Chris Eagles

Crystal Palace Blackburn Rovers Burnley Watford Blackpool Millwall Leicester City Birmingham Nottingham Forest Hull City Bolton Wanderers

Most Clean Sheets

Goals

Club

26 20 20 19 16 15 14 13 10 8 7

Clean sheets

Cardiff City Leicester City Hull City Burnley Brighton Crystal Palace Milwall Huddersfield Nottingham Forest Middlesborough Leeds United

12 12 10 9 8 8 7 7 7 7 6

Current Form - top 10 Pos

Team

Pl

W

D

L

GS

GC

GD

PTS

1 Leicester City 6 5 1 0 14 2 12 16 2 Cardiff City 6 5 1 0 7 2 5 16 3 Watford 6 4 0 2 14 8 6 12 4 Blackburn 6 3 2 1 11 5 6 11 5 Sheffield Wed 6 3 2 1 8 5 3 11 6 Burnley 6 3 1 2 8 5 3 10 7 Barnsley 6 3 1 2 9 7 2 10 8 Charlton 6 3 1 2 11 10 1 10 9 Hull City 6 2 3 1 5 4 1 9 10 Derby County 6 2 2 2 9 7 2 8

Team

Brighton & Hove Albion Blackpool Cardiff City Wolverhampton Wndrs Nottingham Forest Derby County Charlton Athletic Leicester City Hull City Watford

12

Top 10 Average Attendences

Total

358108 209520 308573 327791 334924 347538 276712 324775 233632 191615

Highest 26727 15907 26098 28595 28709 33010 26185 25918 23453 15957

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Average 25574 13968 22041 21853 22328 23169 18448 21652 16688 12774

Capacity 28327 16220 26828 28525 30602 33597 27113 32500 25404 19920

Pct

114.3% 86.1% 82.1% 76.6% 72.9% 68.9% 68.0% 66.6% 65.6% 64.1%

Top Assists Player

Club

TOTAL

Chris Eagles Bolton 12 Thomas Ince Blackpool 10 Bakary Sako Wolves 9 Craig Noone Cardiff City 9 Paul Coutts Derby County 8 Kieran Trippier Burnley 8 Albert Adomah Bristol City 8 Michail Antonio Sheffield Wed 7 Jay Simpson Hull City 7 Elmohamady Hull City 6


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December 2012 Review

Festive Frolics December 2012 T

he month of December proved to be a rather fruitful one for City, with the Tigers finishing the festive period unbeaten, with five wins and a draw. The clubs good form throughout the festive period also ensured that Steve Bruce’s men ended the calendar year in an automatic promotion spot something which helped Bruce pick up the manager of the month award. The fixtures for December looked tricky on paper, with away games at Nottingham Forest, Derby County and in form Watford, as well as home games against promotion rivals Leicester City and Yorkshire derbies against Leeds United and Huddersfield Town.

Nottingham Forest The month began with a trip to the City Ground to face Nottingham Forest. City have won at Forest in each the past two season’s by a goal to nil and it looked like the feat could be repeated early in the first half when Robert Koren slotted home a penalty after David Meyler had been fouled. Forest were soon back on terms with a penalty of their own though, with Billy Sharp picking himself up to score the spot kick after being fouled by Robbie Brady. Chances were scarce in the second half and City had to look to someone few would expect to score the winner - Paul McShane. The goal came about in somewhat controversial circumstances, with the Forest players claiming McShane bundled the ball over the line with his hand after getting on the end of a Nick Proschwitz flick from Koren’s corner. Despite the protests the referee allowed the goal and City held on to win at Forest for a third successive season.

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December 2012 Review

WATFORD One week on and City travelled down to London to play Gianfranco Zola’s inform Watford. The Tigers again showed good resolve and came away with another away win. David Meyler opened the scoring in the first half, heading home a loose ball after Corry Evans’s shot had hit the bar. From then on City controlled the majority of the game and they were rewarded with a second goal ten minutes from time. A foul on substitute Nick Proschwitz gave City a free kick 25 yards out. Robbie Brady stepped up and fired the ball into Almunia’s net via the crossbar. Watford pulled one back in stoppage time through Troy Deeney but it was merely a consolation as City moved level on points with second place Crystal Palace.

Huddersfield Town City’s first home game of the month was a against Yorkshire rivals Huddersfield Town. It was an early kick off at the KC and the Tigers had a chance to move into an automatic promotion spot with a victory. An early goal from Robert Koren eased any pre match nerves City fans may have had, as he converted Stephen Quinn’s low cross after just ten minutes. Bruce’s men continued to look for a second goal to seal the victory, but had to wait until the 90th minute to do so, with David Meyler scoring for the second week in a row. Excellent work from Jay Simpson down the left side of the penalty area allowed him to play a ball across the six yard, with Meyler making no mistake from close range.

Derby County City’s next fixture took them on the road again, this time making the trip to Derby County. The Tigers were looking to make it four wins on the bounce for December. Despite a good performance from the home side, City continued the winning run thanks to goals from Robert Koren and Abdoulaye Faye. Koren opened the scoring in the 25th minute, volleying home Stephen Quinn’s cross. Michael Jacobs equalised on the stroke of half time with a neat finish from the edge of the area but City retook the lead ten minutes into the second half, with Abdoulaye Faye heading home Koren’s corner. The Tigers then held on to move three points clear of 3rd place Crystal Palace.

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December 2012 Review

Leicester City Boxing day saw ex-Tigers manager Nigel Pearson bring his Leicester City side to the KC Stadium. It was a game where both sides had chances to win the game, but neither were clinical enough to snatch the three points. Jay Simpson had all of City’s best openings, having an effort cleared off the line in the first half before being twice denied by Foxes’ goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel late on in the second half. Schmeichel also got down to deny man of the match Sone Aluko from 25 yards out. Leicester’s best chance was missed by the highly rated Frenchman, Anthony Knockaert, after he fired wide from just six yards out. A point kept the Tiger’s two points clear of third place Crystal Palace.

Leeds United Just three days later City were in action again at the KC. Neil Warnock’s Leeds United were the opponents and the Yorkshire derby brought the highest gate of the season so far, with 23,456 in attendance. A near perfect month was capped in style with another three points and a dominant performance by the Tiger’s. Leeds only registered one effort on target during the whole 90 minutes, in a game where the margin of victory could have been a lot higher with better finishing. A frustrating first half in which Robbie Brady, Robbie Koren and Sone Aluko all wasted good chances came to an end with both sides level. The Tigers finally made their dominance pay after 58 minutes, with Corry Evans slotting the ball past Paddy Kenny after a clever through ball from Koren. It got even better for City two minutes later, with David Meyler heading home Brady’s corner to extend the Tigers lead. Aluko and Proschwitz came close to adding a third but the game ended 2-0.

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Back On The road February 2013

MILLWALL Location: The New Den Date: Saturday 2nd February 2013 Kick Off : 3.00PM City travel to South London to face Kenny Jackett’s Milwall on Saturday 2nd February, with the Tigers still looking for their first league win of 2013. The New Den has been something of an unhappy hunting ground for City in recent years, with the Tiger’s being beaten 2-0 last season and thumped 4-0 in the 2010/2011 season. You have to go back to 2006 to find the last time City earned even a point at the New Den, with Jon Parkin scoring in a 1-1 draw. Millwall have enjoyed a turn around in fortunes since their 4-0 defeat at the KC Stadium in September and have been on the cusp of the play offs in recent weeks. One opposition man to watch will be Millwall’s on loan striker Chris Wood, who has scored the majority of the goals during the Lions recent surge up the Championship table.

Head To Head At Millwall: (Overall 29 Matches)

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Results

Total

Millwall Hull City Draws

17 4 8

Percentage

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58.62% 13.79% 27.59%

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BRIGHTON AND HOVE ALBION Location: The Amex Stadium Date: Saturday 9th February 2013 Kick Off: 5.20PM The Tigers second ever trip to Brighton’s Amex Stadium kicks off at 5.20PM due to the game being shown live on Sky Sports. Last season’s fixture produced a goalless draw, with both sides guilty of poor finishing on the day. City’s only other trip to Brighton for a Championship fixture was in 2005 when Peter Taylor’s men were beaten 2-1 at the Gulls’ old ground, the Withdean Stadium. City’s only ever win at Brighton came in 1963. Brighton have enjoyed a mixed season so far and sit just outside the play offs at the time of writing. Gus Poyet’s side will be seeking revenge against City for the 1-0 opening day defeat at the KC Stadium back in August.

Head To Head At Brighton: (Overall 22 Matches)

Results

Total

Brighton & HA Hull City Draws

15 1 6

Percentage 68.18% 4.55% 27.27%


Back on the road CITYS LAST five AWAY days 21st december 2012

DERBY COUNTY 1-2 tigers Jacobs 45

Koren 25 FAYE 50

8th december 2012

WATFORD 1-2 tigers Deeney 90

Meyler 41 BRADy 73

1st december 2012

NOTT’h FOREST 1-2 Tigers SHARP 43

Koren 34 mcshane 69

BOLTON WANDERERS Location: Reebok Stadium

17th november 2012

Date: Saturday 23rd February 2013

Morrison 38 king 46

BIRMINGHAM CITY 2-3 tigers

Kick Off: 3.00PM City’s final game of a February sees Steve Bruce’s side take the relatively short trip into Lancashire to take on Bolton Wanderers. City beat the Trotters 3-1 at the KC back in September, but since then Owen Coyle has been replaced as manager by Douggie Freedman. City’s only visits to the Reebok Stadium were during the club’s two Premier League campaigns. City earned draws on both trips, with the first seasons encounter being the penultimate game of the season and a result which led to City staying in the Premier League at the expense of Newcastle United.

10th november 2012

CARDIFF CITY 2-1 tigers helguson 3 hudson 82

koren 90

AWAY LEAGUE TABLE 12/13 TOP 10

Opposition View - with Bolton fan Dan Scott Bolton have had a very hit and miss season and have struggled to hit any consistency. The drop down from the Premier league has been tough on our players and we are yet to fully recover. Overall our season to date has been poor and all the fans are hoping for change. Dougie has come in and made some key changes within the squad and there are signs of improvement. When we travelled to the KC earlier in the season we looked very poor, and were ripped apart by Hull City. When you visit the Reebok I expect it to be a different story, now under a new manager we seem to be stronger at the back which has given us confidence when going forward. We hope to see David Wheater and Stuart Holden back to full fitness by the time we play which will add some strength. However with Hull having a good away record this season and Bolton never reaching their ‘A’ game, I see both teams cancelling each other out on this occasion.

ALUKO 14,26 Chester 33

Pos 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10

Club

P W D L

Hull City Watford Cardiff City Charlton Brighton Blackpool Crystal Palace Leicester City Sheffield Wed Millwall

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15 15 15 15 15 15 15 14 15 15

8 8 8 6 5 5 5 5 5 4

3 2 2 4 6 4 4 3 3 6

4 5 5 5 4 6 6 6 7 5

GD

PTS

2 8 4 1 1 -2 -3 4 -2 -3

27 26 26 22 21 19 19 18 18 18

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City Independent Special: Home Comforts City independent’s Ian Farrow talks about his favourite memories watching city since moving to the kc stadium from boothferry park in 2002

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ome supporters have been heard to complain about the lack of atmosphere in the KC Stadium. Other fans grumble about the congestion they face when leaving the car park after matches. These are minor moans. Hull City and their followers have had a fantastic decade at their purpose built home, and those proffering the above objections have been more than compensated by the comfort, facilities, safety and general hygiene given at the KC. More importantly much more importantly! – the Tigers have had by far their greatest ever success since moving back to the site of their former Circle ground. We all loved Boothferry Park but, perhaps, more for the rose tinted memories of occasional successes than for the shabby almost derelict ground we eventually left. It was good to move to the KC not just because we now had plenty of clean, covered, toilets and catering facilities that were more than one man, with an urn, in a hut. These may be the reasons why crowds immediately before our move, although good for a Division Three Team, even one doing well, were attracting crowds which hovered just under an average of 10,000. There were 23,319 spectators at the new stadiums opening league fixture against Hartlepool. Attendances then steadied at an average of over 15,000. It is a really difficult task to nominate my favorite matches at the KC or even the stadiums most unforgettable goals. I can easily however give an opinion about the best ever season The KC has seen. In terms of memorable matches and famous goals with just the right amount of doubt about the campaigns ultimate outcome, the first full season at The Kingston Communications Stadium is hard to beat. This was the season, after 19 years without a sniff of success, that proved the springboard for everything that followed. It began on a characteristically sunny day. Equally typically City fans were expectant. New

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signings Dawson, Thelwell, Hinds, Price and Allsopp promised much. However, as usual, events didn’t go quite as supporters expected. We began the season against Darlington. The Quakers were the foes that defeated us in the last match at Boothferry Park meaning our tenure at the old ground didn’t end with a bang but a whimper. There was a big crowd for the game and they were soon in good voice as City attacked with pace down both wings and also looking creative and inventive through the middle. It all looked to be going to plan when, although he looked like misconnecting and missing, Ben Burgess slid the ball just inside the left hand post from 3 yards. However, against the run of play, right at the end of the half, an old nemesis by the name of Barry Conlon equalised when he was left virtually unmarked just inside the area. I remember feelings running high on the concourse at half time. The consensus among fans being that different names in the team, new stadium to perform in but the same old City. It was frustrating for fans who had been given reason to believe. Then, right at the beginning of the second period a stunning goal by new full back Thelwell who smashed one in from the right.


Ok, it might have been a cross but we’ll never know and who cares? A Jason Price strike made it 3 – 1 four minutes later, and ten minutes from the end it was mission accomplished when Allsopp completed the rout. Belief was back. The next game was even more of a proverbial rollercoaster. It was typical of the whole season in which City were often by far the better team but give their supporters – who were used to being let down by them anyway – reasons to fear the worst. City were for once a team who scored goals and this obviously always gives a team a chance in any situation but they certainly made it hard for themselves against some of the lesser teams in the league. One of those lesser teams were Cheltenham. Stuart Elliott gave Peter Taylor’s side the lead very early on, but then Damien Spencer crashed in three chances to put the visitors 3-1 ahead at half time. It was noticeable this half time break that the feeling was not totally desolate. The view this time being that we’ve played good stuff, being naive at the back, but could still get back into the game. City showed that confidence was not unfounded. Price and Allsopp bagged a goal each to give us a deserved draw and by the end only one team could have won the game. A 6 –1 victory over Kidderminster confirmed what a good side City were. City were making and taking chances. Elliott, Burgess, Allsopp, Price, Forrester and Green were all more than capable in front of goal and in this match a new signing Ryan France found the net. He had only been on the pitch eight minutes and had only been signed from Alfreton two days before. Memorable away wins during February and March at Boston and Swansea really set up the promotion feel and with City, although not looking exciting to watch

as before, were still winning the majority of games at home - surprise defeats by Torquay at the tail end of February and Northampton at the beginning of April did cause some jitters but the famous win at Yeovil (and in front of a packed indoor arena watching the match on a live link) confirmed promotion. More promotions followed with many memorable games and goals like Jon Parkin’s header that beat Leeds on April fools day 2006. I’ll also remember Frazier Campbell’s home debut, also against Barnsley, this time in October 2007. The loanee outpaced the visitors’ defenders twice to put us 2-0 up after only 18 minutes. This set City up for both a 3-0 victory and a charge up the league and into the play-offs. Of course, who can forget the play-off semi final home leg. After a 2-0 victory away win we only had to prevent Watford from scoring early to ease our way to Wembley. Unfortunately, Watford weren’t reading from that script. They came at us from the start and got the early goal, after 12 minutes, that we all dreaded. Nice inter-passing in our area gave Darius Henderson the chance he took, with aplomb, to get Watford the early goal, and make it squeaky bum time for us. However, a well won header from Richard Garcia put the visitors goal under pressure after 43 minutes. Many reports suggest that City then scored a scrambled goal. This is one of the most important goals City ever scored and wasn’t a scramble. The ball went towards the South Stand goal and might have gone in anyway but Nick Barmby wasn’t taking any chances. He only had one thing in mind, putting the ball over the line and looking at the replays he was the only player who was ever going to win the challenge six inches from the line for the ball. He did. 1-1. Halftime. Caleb Folan’s excellent header put us ahead on the night. Garcia then slalomed into the Watford area to shoot home to make it 3-1 and Nathan Doyle broke free to make it 4-1 on a night we’ll all remember. These are all great memories but merely a random recollection of so many fantastic moments during 10 years at The KC. There have been many, many, more magic moments especially from our first ever Premier League season and of course the memories we already have from the season we are presently enjoying but for me I still look back to that first success in two decades - the 2003/04 season.

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Transfer Talk

JANUARY TRANSFER TALK WITH Matt Dean

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ith the opening of the January transfer window this month comes Steve Bruce’s chance to strengthen his squad for the second half of the season. This could prove a pivotal month for City’s promotion aspirations and FBTW magazine spoke to BBC Radio Humberside’s Matt Dean about what he thinks of some of Bruce’s reported targets.

David Meyler

David Meyler has been on loan for the Tigers from Sunderland and was an ever present during December’s unbeaten run. Steve Bruce has already made it clear that should the opportunity arise he would like to sign the midfielder on a permanent transfer, it all depends on Sunderland’s willingness to sell. I’ve been very impressed with him so far. Compliments the midfield well with his work rate and passing ability. Also seems to have an eye for a goal or two!

robbie brady Robbie Brady is another man who has come in on loan and performed exceptionally throughout the month of December. Appears to have matured since his last spell at City. His crossing has improved and his focus is sharper, shrewd business to get him. The fact he’s held in high regard by his country (Republic of Ireland U21 Player of the Year) shows just what a talent he is. He will only get better. Bruce has also expressed his desire to sign Brady on a permanent basis and if a price can be agreed between City and Manchester United Brady will sign permanently this month.

Ahmed Elmohamady Elmo joined the Tigers back in September and has been a revelation for City, creating chance after chance with his excellent wing play down the right. Although he is currently tied down on a loan deal until the end of the season there is the option for Sunderland to recall him, something which will concern Steve Bruce throughout January. Such an important player in the promotion push, his mobility out wide coupled with his excellent crossing ability make him a key player. Hope he’s signed up in the summer. He looks to be enjoying his football under Steve Bruce and it shows.

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Transfer Talk

David Stockdale

David Stockdale spent December on loan at City and impressed during his spell with the club. Steve Bruce has been without a regular number one all season and after Stockdale returned to Fulham Bruce may make a bid to bring him back on a permanent transfer. Having said that it is unknown if Fulham are willing to sell and a loan deal for the rest of the season looks the most likely option. He is the right age, has experience and a goodattitude. I hope he comes back for the remainder of the season and earns a permanent deal. It’s about time that position was sorted!

Mohamed Gedo

Gedo is reportedly incoming from Egypt according to KINGFUT.COM. He is a striker who has scored 17 goals in 42 games for his country, including 10 goals in the African Cup of Nations 2010 making him the golden boot winner. Steve Bruce has admitted a move for Gedo is a possibility on a season long loan. Could well shape up to be the surprise signing of the window. His predatory goalscoring instincts are just what the side’s needed for ages and he might just be the man who gets City over the line this season.

Ahmed Fahti KINGFUT.COM also reported that City have been in talks with AhlAhly over a move for utility player Fahti. The Egyptian international has won over 90 caps for his country and has also helped his nation to victory in two African Cup of Nations tournaments. Fahti can play anywere across the back four or in midfield and any move made by City will come as a loan until the end of the season. The Egypt national Manager, Bob Bradley, told me recently he and Gedo have the qualities to succeed in the Championship. Having seen him briefly during the Club World Cup, he seems to like to get forward which will suit the playing style under Steve Bruce.

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Who’s Going Up?

Who’s going up? With the Tigers reaching the half way point of this season’s NPower Championship campaign in an automatic promotion spot, a return to the Premier League is looking a real possibility. With the promotion race set to hot up between now and the end of the season, we take a look at some of the other possible contenters who could challenge City for a place in the top flight of English football.

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Who’s Going Up?

Cardiff City League Position - 1st So far this season

Key Player - Frazier Campbell

Cardiff have been strong in the first half of the campaign and currently sit in first place with a seven point lead over the Tigers. Malky Mackay has put together a strong outfit, having spent plenty of money in the summer, and his side have shown resilience this season picking up many wins by just the one goal. It looks like the title is Cardiff’s to throw away, even with half the campaign still to play.

Cardiff signed the ex-Tigers forward from Premier League side Sunderland at the beginning of the month and he is a player who can certainly score goals at this level. If Campbell can remain injury free he could net at least ten goals between now and the end of the season. If he does that Cardiff should be a Premier League team next season.

League Position - 3rd

Leicester City

So far this season

Key Player - Anthony Knockaert

Nigel Pearson is another manager who has spent money during the summer, constructing a squad which on there day are a match for any team in this league. Having scored six goals in a game on two separate occasions this season, Pearson’s men have proved they have the fire power to get out of this league, and if they can further strengthen in this window they could be the team which stands between the Tigers and a top two finish.

Watford

League Position - 4th

So far this season

Watford have impressed many with their exciting attacking football in the first half of the season. Gianfranco Zola’s side made a poor start, but have since loaned in nine players from abroad and results have picked up. Ranked outsiders at the start of campaign, Zola’s Watford have an array of young talent and in Matej Vydra one of the deadliest finishers in the league. Having lost only once in the last 13 games, they could still yet be an outside bet for promotion. issue 1 issue 1

A relatively unknown quantity who arrived from France in the summer, Knockaert has quickly established himself as a key player for Pearson’s men and one of the best midfielders in the Championship. His creativity and dribbling skills mean he is always a thorn in the side of the opposition, and he has being one the reasons the Foxes have scored so many goals in the first half of the season.

Key Player - Marco Cassetti Cassetti arrived at Watford from Serie A giants Roma and brings a wealth of experience. The 35-yearold former Italy international can play anywhere along the back four and has brought a calming influence and solidity to the Watford backline. Zola quickly established Cassetti as his captain and if he can remain injury free he could be the difference between Watford going up or staying down.

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Who’s Going Up?

Crystal Palace League Position - 5th

Key Player - Wilfried Zaha

So far this season Palace enjoyed a great start to the season under Dougie Freedman and were in the top two for the majority of it leading up to Christmas. The loss of Freedman to Bolton seemed to slow Palace slightly, but with new manager Ian Holloway steadying the ship, the Eagles are looking more like the side that went nine home games without defeat earlier in the season. With the free scoring trio up front of Zaha, Glenn Murray and Yannick Bolasie, Palace look a sure bet for the play offs at the very least.

It has been reported that Manchester United, Arsenal and Chelsea are all interested in signing this highly rated youngster. Zaha, who came through the youth ranks at Palace, has been a consistent performer for the Eagles so far this season, scoring and assisting plenty of goals. Palace’s chances of promotion this season could hinge on whether or not they can hold onto the winger until the summer, something which could be near enough impossible if reports are to be believed.

Middlesborough League Position - 6th So far this season

Key Player - Jonathan Woodgate

Another side who had been up challenging the top two but have dropped off recently. Despite the poor run of form of late, Middlesborough still find themselves in a play off spot and five points clear of seventh place Brighton and Hove Albion. If Tony Mowbray’s side can get out of their current sticky patch with a few victories, they should still make the play offs.

Jonathan Woodgate returned to Middlesborough in the Championship after injuries and lack of fitness put pay to his career in the top flight. The ex-England international, who has played for a host of top clubs including Newcastle United and Real Madrid, is still a top defender and providing he can stay fit Middlesborough have one of the best central defenders in the division.

Best Of The Rest.....

League Position - 11th

Leeds United

League Position - 12th

Blackburn Rovers

Burnley

League Position - 13th

League Position - 7th

Bolton Wanderers

Derby County

League Position - 20th

League Position - 9th

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Nottingham Forest

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10 Years at the KC Stadium

10 years at The KC Stadium 10 seasons, four divisions of English football, three promotions and one relegation. Hull City’s first ten years at the KC Stadium has been eventful to say the least. We take a look back at the last decade since the club moved to it’s new home in what has been the most succesful period in the club’s history.

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hen David Lloyd first had the vision of a super stadium in Hull back the early 90’s, it was one which many thought would never come to fruition. The club was in a dire situation financially and many City fans did not want to leave their Boothferry Park home. Lloyd’s original plans of a new stadium involved selling Boothferry Park, brand merging City with rugby league side Hull FC and then redeveloping their Boulevard home into a super stadium with a capacity of almost 40,000. City fans were

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skeptical and they were right to be, it never happened. What did happen some years later, after much talk and speculation, was that the council agreed to invest just under 45 million pounds into developing a new stadium on the Circle near Anlaby Road. Ironically this was the site of City’s first ground before the move to Boothferry Park and with the club now under the ownership of the much liked Adam Pearson, as oppose to the crook-like Lloyd, there was a real feeling of optimism amongst the fans. There issue 1 issue 1

was a hope that that once the new stadium came along the club could finally move forward, putting the dark days of near relegation from the Football League and financial woe behind it. The KC took three and half years to build and was officially opened in December 2002. The opening game saw Sunderland visit in a friendly, a game which the Tigers won 1-0. The first league game came on boxing day against table toppers Hartlepool United and City were again victorious. Tigers’ manager at


10 Years at the KC Stadium

the time Peter Taylor said it would be a springboard to success for the club, but excluding those two opening wins, results during the second half of that season did little to suggest he would be proved correct. In a stadium which looked so out of place in the bottom tier of English football, City were struggling to play in it. Away teams relished a trip to the KC. A massive inidcation of how far the club has come since then is the fact that half the teams who came and took all three points in that opening season are now playing non league football. Fans began to worry, however having inherited the majority of the playing squad from previous managers, it still wasn’t a team which Peter Taylor had put together, something Taylor had a chance to rectify in the coming pre season. He did just that, by becoming the third manager of Adam Pearson’s reign as chairman to handed a pre season war chest. The difference between Taylor and his predecessors

was that he spent the money on players who knew how to win football matches. At the start of that season, Taylor had spent almost £1,000,000 on new players and in the bottom tier of English football that was big bucks. Many other clubs sniped at Taylor, and City, but if anything, it spurred them on. City won promotion in their first full season at their new home, losing only three times at the KC along the way. The next season would provide a similar challenge for Taylor’s Tigers with the gap from League 2 to League 1 not being as great as many expected. City would be welcoming Yorkshire rivals Barnsley and Sheffield Wednesday to the KC and fans were rightly excited. Taylor was again given funds for strengthening his squad, and by issue 1 issue 1

Christmas City were sitting second in the table and looking at a second successive promotion. Anyone who didn’t want to leave Boothferry Park two years prior would have been hard pressed to justify that now. The impact the new stadium was having was incredible, but this was only the beginning. Promotion that season was secured with three games still to play and no sooner had the season finished City fans were already looking forward to welcoming some From Boothferry To Wembley From Boothferry To Wembley

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10 Years at the KC Stadium

big teams to the KC the following season. The likes of ex-Premier League sides Wolves, Derby County and local rivals Leeds United would all be visiting next season. City were now a Championship club and had a stadium worthy of a team playing in that league. This was though, to prove Peter Taylors biggest test at the club. He knew decent players at Championship level cost a lot more than the ones he had been signing in League One and Two. City could no longer be the big spenders of the league and Taylors recruitment would be key to City surviving. Unfortunately for Taylor, the majority of his signings that summer spent most of their time out injured, but thankfully the club’s form at the KC meant they remained in the Championship for another season at least. There

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were many memorable games at the KC in that first Championship season. City beat the likes of Derby County and Sheffield Wednesday in front of sell out crowds, as well as beating relegation rivals Crewe and Plymouth in important relegation six pointers. There was, however, none so big as the clash with Leeds United in the closing weeks of the season. It was a game both the fans and players had been looking forward to all season and it also presented Peter Taylor’s side with a chance to pull clear of the relegation zone with a victory. The atmosphere was electric, one of the best at the KC to this day, and when Jon Parkin scored a header mid way through the second half the roof nearly came off. City held on to defeat Kevin Blackwell’s Leeds and City were all but safe with a handful of games still to play. It was issue 1 issue 1

a massive achievement for Taylor, who knew the importance of not allowing the club to slip back down a league. It was Adam Pearson’s long term vision to make Hull City a Premier League club and it was vital that they didn’t take a step backwards now if they were to achieve that goal. The club and fans looked ahead to another Championship season were hopeful there would a mid table finish, perhaps even some flirtation with the play offs. That optimism was soon rocked by the departure of the club’s most successful ever manager that summer. Premier League side Charlton Athletic came calling for Peter Taylor’s services and although he did eventually turn the South London side down, his relationship with City was damaged. Having committed his future to the club, just a few weeks


10 Years at the KC Stadium

KC ‘Q and A’ with David Burns BBC Radio Humberside’s sports reporter David Burns tells us his favourite game and goal while commentating on City in the clubs first ten years at the KC, as well as the role the new stadium has had on City’s success in the last decade.

Favourite game at the KC?

I’d have to say without a doubt my favorite game since the move was the play off semi-final second leg against Watford. The game had the necessary amount of tension, exultation, relief and sheer history of getting to Wembley for the first time. It was a momentous occasion for the club and it was fantastic scenes at the final whistle.

Favourite goal?

This is a difficult one for me because I’ve got a rubbish memory! I’d have to go with Jon Parkin’s goal against Leeds in the first season in the Championship. It was a sell out at the KC and everyone was desperate for City to beat Leeds. It was a really good atmosphere and when Parkin scored the roof nearly came off the place. I was particularly pleased because I’d recommended Parkin to Peter Taylor when he was playing at Macclesfield and the club went and signed him!

Importance the KC has had in City’s success?

You can never underestimate just how much the KC Stadium has done for this club or indeed the City of Hull. Without the stadium the club wouldn’t have made the Premier League and the city wouldn’t have had that world-wide publicity and confidence it brought. The council’s investment of over 40 million pounds to build the stadium was the best investment of public money the city of Hull has ever seen. later Taylor left for Championship rivals Crystal Palace and duly took with him two of City’s most influential players of the previous two seasons, Leon Cort and Stuart Green. Adam Pearson eventually got his replacement, a man who goes by the name of Phil Parkinson. Parkinson, a young up and coming manager, was to be given resources he’d never had available to him at previous club Colchester and his summer recruitment had City fans confident a play off push was a real possibility in the upcoming

season. Unfortunately that wasn’t to be the case and mid November Parkinson was sacked with the club firmly rooted in the relegation zone. Phil Brown took over as caretaker manager and in his first game City thumped Cardiff 4-1 in front of a big crowd at the KC. Phil Brown was subsequently given the job until the end of the season and his first task as manager was to bring legend Dean Windass back to the KC. Deano arrived and stated he would score the goals to save the club from relegation. True to his word, issue 1 issue 1

Deano did just that. Eight goals from Windass in the final three months of the season were enough to keep City in the Championship, with rivals Leeds United relegated on the last day of the season. That summer it was all change behind the scenes, with owner Adam Pearson selling the club to a southern based consortium, headed by Paul Duffen. Duffen, like Pearson, was an amicable character and said everything the fans wanted to hear. Brown was installed as permanent manager in the same week as the takeover was completed From Boothferry To Wembley From Boothferry To Wembley

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10 Years at the KC Stadium

and was promised the funds to take the club into the Premier League. Fans had heard much of the same the previous summer and were skeptical. After a mixed start to the campaign it wasn’t expected City would go any further than mid table. As the five year anniversary of the KC Stadium came around that December, City marked it with a 2-0 victory over Leicester to move into the top ten of the division. The Tigers surgeup the tablebegan to pick up momentum in the New Year and by mid February Phil Brown had City on the cusp of the play offs. By now the club had began its ‘Dare to Dream’ campaign and the fans were getting excited at the prospect of a promotion push. The chances of the KC finally seeing Premier League football were increasing by the week as the Tigers good form continued. Five straight wins saw City take second spot with just three games

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to play, however a run of two games without a win saw the Tigers finish second behind Stoke and West Brom. To reach the play offs was some achievement and few City supporters would have expected them to brush aside Watford in the play off semi final in the manor they did. A 2-0 away victory was followed up by a resounding 4-1 second leg win, one of the most memorable evenings at the KC to this date. A mass pitch invasion ensued at the final whistle to celebrate the club reaching the final at Wembley and it was a truly special moment in the history of Hull City AFC. The club were now just win game away from football’s richest prize, a place in the Premier League. A Dean Windass goal on a baking hot afternoon in the capital made history, as City reached the top division of English football for the first time. It was 24th May 2008 and just six years prior City had been issue 1 issue 1

playing at Boothferry Park in front of average crowds of just 8,000. The club sold 20,000 season tickets for its first in the Premier League, a remarkable turn around from the day Adam Pearson bought the club almost eight years prior. The Premier League saw sell out crowds at the KC every week and despite a remarkable start to the season, Phil Brown’s men only just avoided relegation by a single point. A defeat for Newcastle United at Aston Villa sent the Magpies down and the Tigers’ 1-0 defeat at home to Manchester United didn’t matter. The fans invaded the pitch again, as City had dramatically achieved Premier League survival against the odds and another season in the Premier League awaited. The next season began much as the second one had ended, with City being beaten on a regular basis. Adam Pearson returned to the club in October and declared the


10 Years at the KC Stadium

club’s finances to be in a state of disarray. Much of the blame was left at Paul Duffen’s feet and he was consequently shown the exit. It became imperative the club remained in the Premier League to avoid administration and as results failed to improve, Brown was the next to go. Iain Dowie was brought in as his replacement, but he failed halt the slump and City slipped back into the Championship. After witnessing three promotions, it was the first relegation the KC Stadium had seen, and with the state of the club’s finances it was a worrying times for City. Nigel Pearson was brought in during the summer as Adam Pearson began his restructuring process. The KC became a revolving door with many players coming and going as Pearson attempted to build a squad which

could compete in the Championship. It was a difficult first half of the season, as the squad struggled to gel. The club was also still under threat of administration, that was at least until Assem Allam declared his interest in buying the club. The wealthy local businessman bought the club in December and effectively saved it. Pearson was then given funds for transfers and he made a number of signings in the January transfer window. Results improved in the second half of the season and City finished mid table. The following campaign was to be another frustrating one as City missed out on the play offs again, this time by just five points. The Tigers had looked in pole position to be in the promotion race for most of the season, however Nigel Pearson’s departure back to Leicester

in November was a distraction. Nick Barmby was appointed in charge for the rest of the season but after failing to secure a play off spot he was sacked. This caused uproar from the fans and it was important the Allams made a managerial appointment which would appease them. The appointment of Steve Bruce did that. With Bruce currently guiding the side to second in the table and in with a great shout of promotion, the fans are fully behind Bruce and his team. The 10 years at the KC has seen much change within the club, with plenty of comings and goings, but the fans have seen it all. Its been a remarkable decade for Hull City, the most successful in its 108 year history, and few can question the impact the move to the KC has had on the club.

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10 YEARS AT THE KC : THe Fans views FAVOURITE GAMES

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ith the 10 year anniversary of the KC Stadium looming this month, FBTW spoke to some Tiger’s fans about their memories and favourite games over a decade at the Circle. Alex Uney, 21 years old from Burstwick - “This is a strange one to some, but I’m going to say the 2-0 friendly victory over Leeds United in the pre-season of 2003. You only had to look at the team Leeds had out that night, it was basically a Premier League starting line up and we beat them comfortably. It was the first time I saw the team that Peter Taylor had put together and it showed me that we had a great chance of promotion the following season.”

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FAVOURITE GAMES

Jamie Barwick, 20 year old from Bilton - “The Watford game in the play offs would have to be mine. It was a game that I almost missed and it was a last minute decision which led to me getting a ticket. Its a good job I did in the end because it turned out to be quite a night, what with the pitch invasion and reaching Wembley for the first time in the clubs history.”

Matthew Dale, 27 year old from Hessle - “My favourite game at the KC was Leicester City last season. It was Nigel Pearson’s return and it was great to get one over on him. The last minute goal from Koren was unbelievable and the KC erupted when it went in.”

Paul Fletcher, 48 year old from Brough - “Mine was definitely the first ever Premier League game against Fulham. Having followed City for 40 years through the lower divisions it was a game I never expected to see in my lifetime. To win the game itself capped an unbelievable day, one which comes close second to my greatest ever memory of supporting City, which was of course Wembley.”

Thomas Sage , 32 year old from Sproatley - “I would have to say mine was the 1-0 victory over Leeds during our first season in the Championship. It was an early kick off and a fantastic atmosphere, I’ll never forget how City went into the game as underdogs and scrapped against what was a promotion chasing Leeds team at the time. When Jon Parkin scored that header the place went crazy. What a day.”

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Andy Dawson: 10 Years, Four Divisions

ANDYDAWSON: ONE Man, 10 Years, Four Divisions You could easily describe Andy Dawson’s time with Hull City as a fairytale. It is very rare in modern football that a player spends 10 years at a club, never mind plays in all four divisions of English football with that same club.

Boaz Myhill, Ian Ashbee and Ryan France, along with Dawson, have all played in the four divisions for Hull City, however non can match Dawson’s feat of being with the club for 10 seasons. A series of events are now being held for supporters to celebrate Andy’s 10 years with the club and From Boothferry to Wembley Magazine met the City legend at the recent Wembley Reunion event at Willerby Manor. When Peter Taylor brought Andy Dawson to Hull City in the summer

of 2003 the club were still loitering in the Football League’s basement division. Having been the League Two big spenders that summer City’s aim was promotion, but this was just the same as any other year for City fans. The Tigers were always a big fish in a small pond in League Two and year after year the fans watched as the club failed to live up to expectations. If you’d told the fans or indeed Andy Dawson himself that the club would be promoted that season and then 10 years down the line Dawson would be

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approaching his testimonial having played in the Premier League with the club, you’d have been laughed at. Perhaps fairytales do happen? “I never expected it in my wildest dreams,” admits Dawson “To be honest, I knew I was joining a big club having played against them before for Scunthorpe, but I didn’t expect us to go as far as we did in such a short space of time.” Stepping up to the next division is something Andy has never really had a problem with.


Andy Dawson: 10 Years, Four Divisions

Each season in a new division supporters would question whether or not he could make the step up and each year he proved he could. One moment which will live long in the memories of the tiger nation was his tackle on a marauding Theo Walcott at the Emirates. City of course won that day at Arsenal and it was one of many famous victories whilst the club was in the Premier League. “That was one game that typified the way we played that first season in the Premier League. We went to Arsenal as the underdogs and attacked them. Even when we went one down we battled on and in the end it was something of a smash and grab.” Unfortunately the Tigers couldn’t hold onto that top flight status and after two seasons the club were relegated, the greatest low experienced since Andy has been with the club. “Going down that season was very hard to take, especially with the financial implications relegation had on the club. We all wanted to stay up that year for the sake of a lot of things, especially the fans, because they were fantastic.” issue 1 issue 1

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Andy Dawson: 10 Years, Four Divisions There were other times of struggle while Dawson has been at the club. One example being the survival campaign during the 2006/2007 season. Phil Parkinson had taken over from Peter Taylor during the summer leading up to it and after struggling in the relegation zone, Parkinson was sacked in December. Phil Brown took over with the club looking doomed to relegation, however he kept City up on the last day with a 1-0 win at Cardiff, a result which condemned rivals Leeds United to League One. With the lows also came great highs, none more so than the climax of the 2007/2008 season, which saw Dawson and his team mates take Hull City to Wembley for the first time in the clubs history. A 1-0 victory over Bristol City ensured the Tigers left Wembley with a 100% record which is still intact to this day. “The play off final was a fantastic day. Our instructions were to try and forget the stadium and the fact the whole world was watching and focus on the task in hand -winning the game. Handling the occasion was the biggest part but we managed to do that.” The second half of that game was spent camped in the Tigers half as Bristol piled on the pressure and it took real guts and determination to hold on to the one goal advantage.

Dawson Free Kick Specials Andy has been deadly from free kicks over the years scoring many times from the dead ball. We look back at some of his best

Barclays Premier League Hull City 3-2 Everton

An imprtant game for City’s survival hopes saw Everton arrive at the KC Stadium. An impressive City performance saw them take an early lead through Stephen Hunt and soon after the Tigers had a free kick all of 30 yards out. Dawson walked up and leathered the ball around the wall and into the top corner for possibly his greatest free kick ever.

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Coca Cola Championship Derby County 2-2 Tigers

FA Cup Middlesborough 4 - 3 Tigers

Division 3 Hull City 3-2 Southend United

Barclays Premier League Tigers 1 - 2Stoke City

In in important game aginst Derby City were trailing one nil in the first half when they were awarded a free kick 25 yards out. Dawson stepped up and from 30 yards curled the ball at pace past a despairing Stephen Bywater.

City trailed early on in this one before a howler from the Shirmpers keeper gave Danny Allsopp a tap in. Then mid way through the second half City got a free kick 25 yards out. Andy Dawson smashed it round the wall and into the top corner to give City a 2-1 lead.

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The Tigers were losing 4-0 before a header from Dawson and a Parkin penalty pulled two back. City then got a free kick and Dawson curled it in off the crossbar (pictured bottom left) give City a third goal.

Although this goal was only a consolation it was Dawsons first goal in the Premier League and in doing so demonstrated his free kick ability to the world by expertly curling the ball up and over the wall past Thomas Sorensen in the Stoke goal.


Andy Dawson: 10 Years, Four Divisions

“It was a really gutsy second half performance because I remember they were just piling the ball forward looking for an equaliser. That second half defensive show was typical of the way we played that season, there was a determination and work ethic about us and it got us through in the end.” The final whistle saw Hull City fans rejoice as the club made it to the Premier League for the very first time and it was the career highlight for many players in the Hull City squad that day including Andy himself. “It was my career highlight to date and I’m sure it was for most of our squad that day. To play in the Premier League was an amazing experience but winning at Wembley, in the Championship play off final, in front of 90,000 people was what dreams are made of and is something that none of us will never forget.”

The following season Phil Brown’s men made a fantastic start to the clubs first ever Premier League campaign, surprising teams with their attacking brand of football which brought victories at places like Arsenal and Tottenham. Chairman Paul Duffen was at one point talking about the possibility of a European adventure. Things then went very wrong and the Tigers began to slide down the table towards the relegation zone at an alarming rate. “It’s always difficult to work out what happened in the second half of that season. We were going so well, I think it may have been more about us catching teams off guard at the start of the season, but then teams saw how we played and counter acted us. Teams began to do their issue 1 issue 1

homework and it became very difficult after Christmas.” The next season City were not to survive and it was a difficult time for the club with the financial implications relegation had brought. Andy did play 60 Premier League games in the clubs two seasons in the top flight, captaining the side throughout the second season. Since relegation the Tigers are now in their third season back in the Npower Championship. Last season saw ex team mate and good freind of Andy, Nick Barmby, take over as manager, a period which Andy enjoyed. “It was good to have Nick as manager even if it was only for a few months. It’s a shame it didn’t work out for him in charge because he From Boothferry To Wembley From Boothferry To Wembley

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Andy Dawson: 10 Years, Four Divisions

had some good ideas as a manager and liked to play good football, something which I’m also sure the fans enjoyed.” Things didn’t work out for Barmby and he left the club in the summer following his side’s failure to reach the play offs. Under Steve Bruce’s stewardship this season City are well placed for automatic promotion and a return to the big time. Whilst it’s been a good season for the club so far Dawson has endured a frustrating time, starting only three league games. “It’s been a difficult season for me personally because I’m used to playing games. There was a chance for me to go out on loan but to be honest I didn’t really want to leave the club.

Steve Bruce was very honest with me, he told me what my position in the squad was this season and that was all you can ask as a footballer. As long as the gaffer is honest about these things I am happy to play for him when needed.” he admits With the club now holding a series of events leading to Andy’s testimonial in the summer, it is something he is enjoying so far. “I’ve really enjoyed the events so far. We had the race event last month and we’re having the Wembley reunion and both have been really succesful. It’s been great to meet all the fans and give them chance to meet some of the current and ex-players in a sociable enviroment.” With City currently well placed

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for a return to the Premier League, Dawson admits it is a great opportunity for City to get back in the best league in the world. “We’re in a great position at this but we’re just taking each game as it comes at this stage. There is still a long way to go and its important we keep up the level of performance to maintain our position and get back in the Premier League, thats where we all want to be.”


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Half Season Review

2012/2013 Half Season Review

With city currently at the half way mark of their npower championship season, we take a look back at the first five months of the campaign.....

W

hen Steve Bruce joined Hull City in the summer after weeks of speculation, fans could finally look forwards rather than backwards. There was much discontent amongst supporters following the sacking of hometown hero Nick Barmby in the closing stages of last season, as many felt Barmby was the man to lead the club forward. It was difficult to see who would be the next Tigers boss, with many names linked throughout the summer,

however if the Allam’s did anything by appointing Steve Bruce it was send out a signal of intent. Here is a man who has won it all as a player at Manchester United, won promotion from the Championship on numerous occasions with Birmingham and has also managed in the Premier League for many years. City fans were suddenly a lot more optimistic at the prospect of the new season, and they were right to be. Pre season saw the Allams back Bruce with money. He

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spent £2.5 million on German striker Nick Proschwitz, whilst also bringing in Eldin Jakupovic, Abdoulaye Faye, Ben Amos and Stephen Quinn. However arguably the real coup of pre season for the Tigers was former Rangers’ man Sone Aluko on a free transfer. The Nigerian international was a star player for the Scottish club the previous season and City managed to fend off interest from a host of top European clubs to land the front man.


Half Season Review

Since then Bruce has also added both David Meyler and Ahmed Elmohamady on loan from Sunderland and Robbie Brady on loan from Manchester United. It took a few games for the Tigers to find their feet, but in the first half of the season City have pleased supporters with an attractive brand of football which has seen the club sitting inside the second of the two automatic promotion slots since mid December.

Charlton and a 3-2 Capital One Cup defeat at Doncaster saw City end August with one win, one loss and one defeat from the opening three league games.

August

It all began on a baking hot August day with the game against Brighton. It was a difficult game against Gus Poyet’s men, with City eventually stealing one in the last five minutes thanks to a Jay Simpson goal. Next up was a trip to freshly relegated Blackburn Rovers, who arguably have the strongest squad in the league on paper. In a frustrating game for City a solitary second half goal from Colin Kazim Richards ensured Blackburn ran out 1-0 winners. A 0-0 draw at

September

Millwall had the supporters in disbelief. City were rampant against the Lions, scoring four times in the opening half hour. City didn’t score again in the game and Millwall did pull a goal back, however City were dominant that day and looked like they could score at any time. A midweek trip to Elland Road followed three days later and Bruce’s men again played some fantastic stuff in a famous 3-2 victory over Leeds United. City went behind early on at Elland Road but the Tigers showed character to come back and claim the three points.

After much optimism in the build up to the season a mixed month of August left City fans wondering what the campaign ahead would have in store for them. The opening three games of September then gave a good indication of what City were capable of. If beating Bolton 3-1 at the KC on the 1st of September was impressive then the week after the game against

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Half Season Review

After a perfect start to September City were then brought firmly back to earth when they travelled to the King Power Stadium to face former manager Nigel Pearson’s Leicester City. The Tigers never really got going that day and found themselves 2-1 down at half time. A goal in second half stoppage time from David Nugent condemned City to a 3-1 defeat and one week later City were again beaten by the same score line at the KC by strugglers Peterborough. It meant September ended on a sour note after what had been a brilliant start the month.

from substitute Aaron Mclean sealed the three points against Yorkshire rivals Sheffield Wednesday and the following week City made it back to back wins with a 2-1 victory over Ipswich Town. After trailing for a long period Bruce introduced Nick Proschwitz from the bench and he struck twice in the last ten minutes to complete an impressive comeback.

October

October began in the same way September ended, with another home defeat. This time it was Ian Holloway’s Blackpool who were the visitors and his team came back from being 2-1 behind to snatch a late winner in a 3-2 victory. After three defeats in a row the Tigers finally got back to winning ways at Hillsborough the following Saturday. A second half goal

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The next game was a trip to Middlesborough. Steve Bruce opted to rest key players that night and it proved a huge mistake as Boro ran out comfortable 2-0 winners. At this point of the season it was clear to supporters that City were capable to beating anyone on their day, but unfortunately there was a degree of inconsistency which would ruin any hopes of promotion unless it could be eradicated.


Half Season Review Fans remained loyal to the cause though and one week later the Tigers were in action in front of the Sky cameras in an away game against Bristol City. It was an impressive performance from the Tigers, with Bruce making changes to the side which had lost at the Riverside earlier that week. Aluko was back in the starting eleven and his opening goal set the Tigers on their way to a 2-1 victory.

November

The opening two games of November brought back to back home wins against Barnsley and Wolves. The Barnsley game saw Sone Aluko score the only goal in a 1-0 victory and he opened the scoring again in the 2-1 win over Wolves three days later, with Jay Simpson getting the second that night. An eagerly anticipated game against league leaders Cardiff City was up next. Cardiff have led the way all season and this was to be a real acid test for Steve Bruce’s men to test their promotion credentials. Unfortunately it wasn’t to be with Cardiff taking a two goal lead. Robert Koren did pull one back but the Blue Birds held on to pull further clear at the top of the table. The supporters remained upbeat despite the defeat, as City had more than held their own against a Cardiff team who had spent a lot of money strengthening that summer. A 3-2 away win at Birmingham one week later helped supporters quickly forget about the Cardiff defeat.

Unfortunately the Tigers’ problems with consistency reared again against Burnley at the KC, with ex-tiger Dean Marney scoring the only goal in 1-0 victory for the Clarets which now means that Burnley have beaten City seven times in a row, something which surely has to change when the Tigers visit Turf Moor in March. The month ended with a 0-0 draw at home against promotion rivals Crystal Palace, and Sone Aluko was named Npower Championship player of the month for November.

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December December saw City firmly put their hold on second place with five wins and one draw from their 6 games. In that period City won away at Nottingham Forest, Derby County and Watford whilst also beating Yorkshire rivals Leeds United and Huddersfield Town at the KC. The one draw came against Leicester City on boxing day. (for a more in detailed review of December see previous month recap on page 14)

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Premier League Days

THE PREMIER The 24th of May marked a momentous day for all at Hull City AFC. A 1-0 play off final victory against Bristol City meant the club would be playing in the Premier League the following season for the first time in it's 104 year history.

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t a recent Andy Dawson testimonial dinner Phil Brown spoke a little bit about leading the club into the top division for the first time and some of the highlights of being in the Premier League as manager of Hull City. When Brown took over as Hull City manager in 2007 the club were

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languishing in the relegation zone of the Championship and a return to League One looked certain. Brown somehow managed to turn it around and 18 months later City won the play off final to book at spot in the most watched league in the world. “When I came to Hull City the dressing room was full of players issue 1 issue 1

who didn’t want to stand up and be counted. That had to change and a year later we had a great togetherness. Before we knew it we were in the play off final and had a shot at making dreams come true for Hull City fans. Wembley was an incredible day, full of emotion and full of passion from my players. They gave 110% every week and it was so deserving that they won it that day. That team had probably the best spirit I have ever managed, as a unit we were unmatchable.” Going into the 20082009 season the club were looking at


Premier League Days

LEAGUE DAYS looking at a survival campaign at best. The summer had seen new players come in but the opening game against Fulham featured the majority of the team that had lined up in the Championship the previous season. Phil Brown knew he had his work cut out keeping the Tigers up, but after victories against Fulham, West Ham, Arsenal, Tottenham, Newcastle and West Brom in the opening two months of the season, City went into October only two points off the top of the table. Brown

himself admits it was difficult to manage expectations at that time with attentions already turning towards Europe rather than avoiding relegation. “We did remarkably well in those opening two months of the campaign,” he admits “We had split the season into four parts, with a points total aim for each part. By October we were well ahead of schedule and exceeding even the wildest of expectations. The fans and even the owner were talking in issue 1 issue 1

the media about the possibility of Europe, but for us it was just a case of trying to keep the players feet on the ground.” City were soon brought back down to earth with a 3-0 home defeat by Chelsea and despite a spirited performance at Old Trafford one week later, back to back defeats were confirmed for the first time that season after a 4-3 loss at Manchester United. Fans didn’t panic and a 2-2 draw at Anfield was the highlight of December. That month also saw City claim a controversial 2-1 victory From Boothferry To Wembley From Boothferry To Wembley

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Premier League Days

“There are several well established teams in the Premier League that consistently finish between 12th-16th and want to break into that top ten. We’d come along and were doing it comfortably in our first season. If

you’d said at Christmas that year that we’d only pick up one more win all season I don’t think anyone would have believed you.” Things then went very badly for Phil Brown and his team. A pitch side dressing down at Manchester City seemed to be the catalyst for all that went wrong in the rest of that season, that’s what most people outside the club thought anyway. Being 4-0 down at half time was unacceptable and Brown took the players across in front of the travelling Tigers fans and did his half time team talk on the pitch. Although it was ridiculed by the media, City actually played better in the second half and pulled a goal back. Supporters of the club and those on the inside could see there was no connection between City’s form in the second half of the season and the

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at home to Middlesbrough, but then one week later the Tigers were beaten 4-1 at home by a struggling Sunderland. Inconsistency was starting to show but the fans remained upbeat that the club would survive. After all, the club went into Christmas still in the top 10 of the Premier League, a remarkable achievement when one year prior they were 12th in the Championship, a turnaround Brown took full credit for. "Going into Christmas that year we'd done exceptionally well to be where we were.”

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team talk on the pitch, but the media continued to connect the two. All was forgotten two weeks later when Jimmy Bullard became the club’s record signing from Fulham for £5,000,000. This was another marker of how far the club had come and it was seen as quite a coup, despite the ex-Wigan man’s past injuries. Brown admits the signing of Bullard didn’t go as well as he’d hoped. “When we signed Jimmy he was a footballer who was worth what we were paying for him. It was a good deal for ourselves as we were getting one of the best central midfield players in the country, unfortunately for us he got a serious injury. It was only once he got injured it became a bad deal for us, but its always a gamble when you sign any player because of the threat of injury.


Premier League Days

Jimmy was very unlucky in the end because all he wanted to do was play and repay the club.” Bullard did eventually make his debut at West Ham, but got injured again and was out for a further seven months. City no longer had Bullard to look to for inspiration and fans couldn’t see where the next win was coming from. The gap between the Tigers and the bottom was narrowing and people began to accept that it was going to be a real fight to survive in the Premier League. Then City finally won a game. Almost four months after their previous victory, Brown’s team went to Fulham in mid March and produced a fantastic display to snatch a 1-0 win. Manucho was the scorer that night, having done nothing else of note in his loan spell with the club, his goal effectively ended up keeping

the Tigers up. The last two months of the season produced only two more points, and the club survived in the Premier League by the skin of its teeth. Newcastle went down at the expense of City, something which surprised many pundits, but not Brown. “That last couple of weeks of that first Premier League season were very nervous times. The players were working hard for each other but we were getting no breaks at all, it was as if the whole world was against us at times. "Deep down we always felt we could stay up after the start we made.”

Most of the pundits had relegated us before a ball was kicked, then they said it again at Christmas when we began to struggle but we dug in and it was a massive achievement.” issue issue 11

Survival was achieved and City supporters could look forward to another season in the Premier League. The summer of recruitment was important as Brown was keen to halt the slump that had seen his side pick up a grand total of seven points from a possible 40 in the second half of that previous campaign. A pre season tour of Asia and a place in the Barclays Asian Cup was City’s reward for a good start to the previous campaign, but having beaten a Beijing side in the semi finals, City were beaten 3-0 by Harry Redknapp’s Tottenham Hotspur. The season began a few weeks later with a difficult looking trip to Chelsea. Despite an excellent performance the Tigers were beaten 2-1 thanks to a late goal by Didier Drogba. Fans didn’t panic, as the performance was much better than From From Boothferry Boothferry To To Wembley Wembley

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Premier League Days

"Losing Jimmy again to injury was devasting for us” at the back end of the previous season. The team were competitive against Chelsea. There was soon a cause for concern four days later though, as Tottenham ran riot at the KC to romp to a 5-1 victory. There was an air of deja vu about the game, after a similar result in Asia, and fans were concerned by the ease of Tottenham’s victory. City did beat Bolton a week later, but it took until October before the club picked up another victory and by then Phil Brown’s men were firmly rooted in the relegation zone. October also saw the departure of Paul Duffen and the return of Adam Pearson. The club’s finances were a mess and with Bullard still out injured it was frustrating time. Bullard did return in November and it’s no coincidence that City picked up back to back wins for the first time in over year following his return. Finally a cause for optimism perhaps. That optimism was soon crushed again however when a week later Bullard fell awkwardly on his knee at Aston Villa and his season was set to be over again. “When he was in the side during November he won the Barclays player of the month and we were picking up positive results. Everyone

could see his influence on the side and it was such bad luck he got injured again at Villa doing something so simple as jumping to head a ball on and landing awkwardly. It was just typical of our luck that season.” The loss of Bullard meant City were again lacking a playmaker and good results were scarce throughout January, despite battling performances. Then one week into February, the Tigers first took a point from Chelsea at the KC, before beating Manchester City a few days later. These two results gave real hope to the supporters that the clubs top flight status could be retained for another season. Performances were good at home, but away from home they were the complete opposite. The 5-1 away drubbing at Everton was the final straw for Adam Pearson and after an unfortunate 2-1 home loss to Arsenal, Brown was gone. Iain Dowie was the man tasked with turning around the clubs fortunes but results were just as bad, if not worse under Dowie. It seemed a bizarre time for Brown to be sacked, a decision which disappointed many fans, especially with the appointment of Dowie as his replacement. Relegation was

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confirmed with two games still to play and the Premier League dream was over for the Tigers. It was a fantastic two seasons for all involved at the club and despite the financial mess that came out of it was a fantastic period in the clubs history. The Premier League is the place to be and this season there is a real possibility of a return. With new owners City wont make the same mistakes again and it is sure to be very different to the last spell in the top flight. Brown has watched City a few times this season and he also feels that this could well be the club’s year under Steve Bruce. “I think its set up very nicely for Hull to go back up. Steve knows what he’s doing and he’s been in this position many times before. He’s also got a very good squad at his disposal and they’ve given themselves a great chance. Whether it’s this season or not, it won’t be long before Hull are back in the Premier League that’s for certain.”


Coming soon FEBRUARY 2013

EXCLUSIVE! Bullard : The TRUTH

ex city star opens up about his time with the club

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