My views on the Premier League are rather well known (see previous blogpost).
Most seasons, it’s there in the background to my real love, non league football and Hampton & Richmond Borough. Something there to pass the time, something of not much relevance to me.
This only changes when Hull City make an appearance in the competition. That’s it. Only because they are my hometown club, a club I followed since being a teenager.
I saw the team at Boothferry Park (loved that old ground), I saw the new stadium go up and supported them there too.
I have seen managers come and go, I have seen the team at Wembley, I have seen them come within inches of turning over one of the games iconic clubs in an FA Cup Final.
I have seen them almost go out of existence, I have seen them locked out of BP and grubbing for money to pay the players.
In short, I have really seen them through thick and thin. This summer though, the definition of ‘thin’ in this context has been given new and horrific depth by the actions of the current owners.
This is not to talk about them.
This is to praise the players, 13 senior professionals who have been let down by the owners, and dropped in ‘it’! 13 professionals who, under caretaker coach Mike Phelan, have banded together with a siege mentality to still fight for the club, and yesterday against the current league champions, those 13 players, bolstered by a handful of under 21 players, put in one of the most amazing performances you will ever see.
No being overrun, no being second best, they stood toe-to-toe with Leicester and snuffed them out of the game. They still had pride, they fought for each other, Sam Clucas and Andrew Robertson were immense and each man played his part.
Mike Phelan. The perennial assistant to bigger names came out of the shadows yesterday with a gameplan for the game which worked, showing that in all those years under Sir Alex Ferguson and Steve Bruce, he was a manager in waiting. The players have shedloads of respect for him, and would probably run through walls if asked.
Hull City may well lose their next match, and without players coming in and a permanent manager appointed, you would think its still likely. But this performance against Leicester City will go down in the memory for years.
Let’s hope the new owners see the club for what it is, not what the current owners tell them it is. Its a club with a proud history, supported by fans that love the club, and want to see the club do well under people that share the same values and ideals. They want owners that listen to the fans (who will be there when owners have passed on), and have respect for their passion.
Hull City fans will always support the players, no matter who’s in the boardroom. That’s the important thing, and will never change.
Hull City fans. Some of the best you’ll find anywhere. I know, I’m still one of them…