Things We Think We Think #264


1. Where on earth to start with the Derby debacle? Oddly enough, it wasn’t that bad for the first half hour or so. City trailed, with Aina and McGregor about equally to blame for Derby’s opener, but we were in the game. Until Larsson missed a penalty. How does a professional footballer, whose actual job it is to direct a football in a particular direction, MISS a penalty? Having one saved is almost understandable, though still unimpressive when there are parts of a goal that a keeper cannot reach available for the taker. But to fail to steer a stationary football with no accompanying opponents into the available 192 square feet from a mere twelve yards…it’s baffling.

2. There are no excuses for what followed. 1-0 down having just missed a penalty isn’t a great situation. 4-0 down at half-time is impossible to salvage, yet that’s what City’s total capitulation following Larsson’s error ensured. It was as appalling a quarter-hour as you could ever wish to see at this level of football.

3. But how? Well, Leonid Slutsky erred with his team selection. Unless David Meyler was either injured or exhausted following international duty, his benching was a decision that’s tough to understand. So is the inclusion of Markus Henriksen, who offers disappointingly little when things are going well and virtually nothing when they aren’t. City were often overrun in the first half, and the team selection needs questioning as much as the application of those who were selected.

4. Kudos to Curtis Davies for not celebrating his goal (though we’re not fragile or juvenile enough to be emotionally scarred forever if an ex-player larges it a bit when putting one over on us) and bigger kudos to Davies and Tom Huddlestone as well for making a point of applauding the 1,054 City fans who made the journey. They never got chance to say goodbye; and neither did we. And they deserved applause back because they were and are excellent footballers and good professionals, and worthy of our continued respect.

5. Two big games this week. Going to Fulham is aesthetically pleasant but seldom easy; playing Sunderland at home is often vociferous and not always pleasant. It’s about time City decided what they are going to be – capable of swatting away distracted opposition at the Circle while grinding out agreeable performances and results on their travels? Currently it’s one and not the other.

6. And the Derby horror show reminded us of just how awful we have actually been away from home for a very long time. It’s not new territory, of course; our first relegation from the Premier League was aided emphatically by a winless season away from home, and there was joy and relief usually associated with last day escapes when that came to an end a few games into the next season at Norwich. But being so dreadful on our travels is embarrassing and must come to an end quickly.

7. We wouldn’t ordinarily concern ourselves with Ehab Allam’s utterances on Friday. They’re as banal, wrongheaded, self-serving and cretinous as you’d expect from him or his father. But…wasn’t it interesting that the club issued them on Friday, a day when the club was being lambasted by two different football authorities. It could be coincidence rather than distraction. Or it could not be.

8. Either way, having already secured for themselves a place in the gutter, it’s clear that the Allam family are now intent on establishing an even more subterranean position for their shattered reputation. Firstly, the club was censured by the Premier League for failing to offer concessions last season. The club misled us when saying concessions still existed, and have now been reprimanded for not doing so. Furthermore, City’s assertion that the rules were “ambiguous” is not true. They’re explicitly clear. City were unaware of them when acting to spite their own fans, and when the magnificent Hull City Supporters’ Trust began their determined campaign to reverse this assault upon our future fanbase, they simply hoped they’d get away with it. That’s evidenced by their refusal to implement concessions even now that their malpractice has been exposed, and as the Upper West Stand lies empty, no-one with an ounce of integrity or intelligence could contend that they’ve had a positive effect.

9. Friday didn’t get much better for City, when the Independent Football Ombudsman issued scathing criticism of the club for having chosen “not to co-operate” with an investigation into alleged mis-selling of these godforsaken memberships. It was, in their view, “unacceptable and unprecedented” for a club to not co-operate. Just think about that. It is literally without precedent that a professional football club in this country should choose not to assist into an investigation launched for the benefit of one of their own fans. It’s a squalid new low.

10. But it’s explicitly the wishes of Hull City AFC. The owners enact policies that intentionally harm the supporters of the club, which are then carried out (with varying enthusiasm) by employees at all levels. Be in no doubt: our owners viscerally loathe City supporters, and haven’t bothered hiding it for some time. Well, it’s mutual. But don’t for a second think you’re going to win, because you aren’t.

8 replies
  1. Jon Tennison
    Jon Tennison says:

    As I trotted my way round the Great North Run yesterday, spying the occasional flash of black and amber hoops of Blaydon runners’ vests, and the odd runner or two with flashes of amber and black, I thought back to the simpler times when such a sight left me looking forward to seeing my favourite team in action. That feeling of being part of a group pulled together by the common cause of Hull City AFC. I want that back, and we will get it back when we have driven the Allams and all that is associated with their misrule, away from our club.

  2. Davicus
    Davicus says:

    As I have commented previously, and been denied by HDM censureship, it is not wrong to point out that one of the most important matters in the minds of middle easterners is that of never losing face. It is simply a national trait. The Allams have lost face on several occasions including their plans to develop the land around the KC stadium, twice in their attempts to change the City name, and the criticism of their ill fated membership scheme. I no longer believe that they have any of the interests of Hull City at heart except insofar as to how much money can be extracted before the club’s descent into league 2 when they can leave us as they found us.

  3. Michael Coates
    Michael Coates says:

    Great well written article, unfortunately our owners never learn. They just continue showing their contempt for fans.
    They think the fans won’t grasp, that with them being business owners, accountant! they can just pull the wool over the eyes of ” punters”.
    Back to the Derby match none of the players put a shift in I’m afraid.
    I personally think our weakest link is the goalkeeping position!
    McGregor & Marshall are both too frail, so give Mannion a chance.
    We seem to be in need of a leader on the field.
    But finally give the Derby manager credit because he planned for the way he knew we would play.
    I really hope Leonid gets the fans backing still, and can progress onwards

  4. John
    John says:

    Thanks Guys, once again you hit the nail on the head with your reporting. Amber nectar continue to be the real voice of Hull City fans. Like Davicus my comments on the HDM have been censored and I am not allowed to say anything now. Please keep the reports coming as we really appreciate them.

  5. gjhdurham
    gjhdurham says:

    Haven’t seen much of Henricksen personally but comments on the web are not good. Casting around for reasons for this selection at Derby then and played out of position it seems. Brain fart by Slut or is Hendricksen part of the brethren, in the same lodge, golf club, owes Roman money or what. 7/10 needs to be downgraded to about 5/10 on this game, but shouldn’t be a surprise as our previous managers were prone to such! Away we need grit which Grot doesn’t give…he’s a homer like Snodgrass. Late sub maybe.
    Always thought Davies was a better captain than Dawson who should be kicking bottoms out there! Bruce fcuked that up though. On the Ch5 replay McG seemed to go for the free kick with his arm bent and seemed to pull his hand away. No wonder he missed it! Someone with a recording might care to look at that. If this continues, I’d play Mannion too. There may be cash there! EA please note…
    21 away games with no win? Middlesbro broke through that at the weekend. We need to improve away, but not sure this and the last manager realised what’s needed. Weds will be interesting. Has the Meyler punishment for tweeting and speaking out of turn lapsed…

  6. Mark bell
    Mark bell says:

    Wow what a lot of wind I can honestly say that hull city fans are beyond saving people have become so bitter now were back to blaming the goal keeper for our device at derby please see all of the picture. Our keeper was not to blame for any of the goal at derby he should not be the one that takes the flack just think of the way he feels when you guys slate him every game .

  7. Blackadder
    Blackadder says:

    The sad thing is that even if Slutsky could work a miracle with this squad and get promotion what then? Another seven loaners brought in, one or two players bought for peanuts and another season of loss after loss and the inevitable relegation to follow. Being a yo yo club can be a good thing if you have good owners who are prepared to invest the Sky money on improving facilities for the fans, giving basic things like concessions for young and old and improving the squad, paying decent wages and giving players incentive to stay with the club after relegation. But we don’t have any of that, we have the Allams who are only interested in lining their own pockets and selling off as many players as they can. If we are not promoted in the next two season (highly doubtful) they will have pocketed the parachute money and left, selling the club for peanuts. By then we will probably be in League 1. I suppose they might sell the club while there is parachute money to make it worthwhile to buyers but there has been zero talk of any such sale for quite a while. So much for Assem Allam “I’ll give it away, out means out, have I ever said something and gone back on it?” “I am a man of principles, money doesn’t come in to it”. Yeah right Assem, where are those principles now? We have the owners from hell and they won’t leave until they’ve extracted every available penny.

  8. Jtiger
    Jtiger says:

    Here’s the tragedy with the Allam’s and it goes to the last line of point 10 above. “Winning” for them should be using the opportunity they have to make people’s lives better. This isn’t liberal cr@p, but they are from Hull, clearly care about it as a place (hence other philanthropic acts) and they have the opportunity to make a difference to a great place/area where the people who live there deserve it more than most other cities. People of Hull aren’t greedy, grasping or demanding – but generally they see through bs and fake promises more than most! The city deserves (again more than most) a club that reflects what they are, it’s not being the best – silverware we really don’t care – we don’t demand or need to be top of the prem or part of any other plastic brigade or fan base. The last 10 years – those guys lucked out. Others gave them two doses of premier league money and parachute payments. For those that can’t figure it out – here is why they didn’t sell last year – there will probably be a 80-90m surplus this coming year, in addition to taking their 8 per cent interest on a paper (ie accounting entry not real) loan/guarantee from the parent Allam company, they’ll simply dividend out this surplus at the end of the year. They may then sell it…but in any event it’s the easiest and most risk free 80 million anyone can make. And btw Ehab if you are reading this – am a lawyer and if this ain’t so at that point – happy to message you privately with my contacts and let’s go with a libel action.
    Here’s the thing – if you were straight and said you were doing the above or part of the above or didn’t flat out lie/bs – then fair enough. You’d be a sad loser – but at least an honest sad loser.
    Life’s achievements aren’t measured in pound notes – it’s how many people you touch – wrong sport, but Arthur Bunting passed away recently – when he croaked his last I hope he had the feeling that his life made others lives better. As a family – the Allam’s had the chance to touch so many lives and help an area and city that again deserves it more than most – and to make it worse an area and people you said you wanted to benefit/improve in this way. Instead when you go, people won’t care enough to dance on your grave or show emotion – people of Hull don’t do hate – instead there’ll be a shrug of the shoulders and in a heartbeat you’ll be forgotten. I can think of no greater waste of life or derogatory statement than that. Plus of course while you deliberatley continue to mislead (and we all see it) and walk around with the additional millions amassed on a false prospectus, the people of Hull will see you for what you are. Again can’t think of a greater waste of life than that. It’s maybe trite to say when you have enough to live a decent life (so forgive me if this offends) but money really doesn’t buy happiness.
    Live with that – silverware, we really don’t care. We view with pity.

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