Things We Think We Think #9

1. Tom Cairney’s return to prominence is a welcome one – his talent is unquestioned and it was a shame to see him go backwards last season, however he has the potential to be one of the division’s best players

2. With two goalkeepers on the books at last, it’s notable that one is a bright young thing with massive potential and the other is an experienced old head who knows this division well. Most useful.

3. That said, having Boaz Myhill playing in the Championship this season for a club other than the Tigers will be a very odd sight, especially when the greatest City custodian for a generation visits the KC with his new (temporary) club Birmingham City in October. We’d still have him back like a shot.

4. Some clarification on Richard Garcia’s situation would be appreciated.

5. We were really positive about the new season until we went and won all five pre-season games, because that rarely bodes well.

6. Seeing Stoke City – promoted from the Championship with us, lest we ever forget – playing a European match this week (and winning it 1-0) is a worthy, discomfiting reminder of what we could have achieved as a top-flight club in the absence of morons and shysters making the decisions.

7. And Jonathan Walters scored their goal. It’s almost on the verge of the inexplicable, really.

8. ESPN are again badgering managers for comments while the game is actually being played this season – it’s fortunate for their reporters that City are unlikely to feature on that channel, as we suspect it’s an innovation Nigel Pearson would have little patience for.

9. Amber socks work much better than black hose with the new home kit. Black and amber stripes is our favoured style of City shirt, but it makes for a very dark kit if paired with black shorts and black socks. Amber socks brighten up the whole outfit, so we were pleased when they were used in the Bradford friendly (the Bantams tipped up wearing pink, and some say our sky blue away kit is effeminate!) but oddly not at Chesterfield.

Amber socks were part of the original design from adidas, use them whenever we wear the home kit please John Eyre. Ideally, City would use hooped socks, but in their prolonged absence (we last wore hooped socks in 1987) amber hose with striped shirts will do nicely.

9a. Anyone thinking a sky blue football shirt is effeminate or gay has some serious egodystonic issues and should seek therapy.

10. Many folk have howled this is the worst home shirt ever, but it really isn’t, it’s better than last season’s for a start. What people object to is that hideous sponsor patch, and they have a point, but remove that and it’s a fairly nice kit. The shirts are delivered to the club plain, and they send them off to have the patches heat bonded on. Tiger Leisure could sell them sans sponsor if they wanted to y’know.

Things We Think We Think #8

1. Now that the only man at the club with experience of properly running one also owns Hull FC, things could become very int-er-es-ting at Hull City, and not in a good way. The Allams have said in their own words that football isn’t their game, their knowledge of how the football side of the business should be run is almost non-existent, so the appointment of whoever fills the Pearson void when he inevitably severs ties will be a pivotal moment.

2. When Adam Pearson sold the club to Messrs Bartlett and Duffen, it was reported he’d stay around for six months to advise – he was gone in under half that time. Now that he’s bought Hull FC, we don’t believe he’ll be around much longer, despite assurances to the contrary in the media.

3. Would Adam Pearson really have bought a rugby league club, which can only ever be a lesser outfit than a Championship football club, if all was well at City?

4. That said, would YOU want to work under Mark Maguire, who thinks Cash Converters is an acceptable sponsor?

5. Mark Maguire’s most notable contribution to the running of Hull City, beyond signing that nauseating sponsorship deal, has been to provide ‘jobs for the boys’. Backroom staff, local and loyal servants of the club, have been let go in a publicised, ostensibly cost-cutting move, but the arrival of several of Maguire’s mates from Stockport has not been publicised. That’s because their sizeable wages, company cars and company houses proves the ‘cost cutting’ exercise to be a lie. The Allams have stated they wish to give something back to the people of Hull, Maguire seems more concerned with diverting monies to Greater Manchester.

6. It was only a friendly, but it was still nice to beat the Scousers, just to stick it to the Hull born arseholes who parade around the city in Liverpool shirts. Imagine how smug the plaggy-Scouser at work (and there is one in every workplace, as if filling an EU quota) would have been today had they won?

7. Funny how those who were bemoaning a lack of decent signings and slagging Nigel Pearson off as negative a day or two ago now think City will win the Championship, FA Cup, Strictly Come Dancing and The X-Factor.

8. On Saturday, North Ferriby United held a kit launch at Princes Quay. They didn’t ask fans to search the city centre for the new kit and take low-res photos in the rain, they just showed it off, took orders and sold merchandise. An amateur club can organise a kit launch better than Hull City at present.

9. What’s happening in the boardroom and club offices is a little unsettling, but what’s happening on the pitch is a source of real hope and belief. Nigel Pearson is an excellent manager, he and his staff are doing a fine job transforming the club, moving on overpaid underachievers and fashioning a side that is hardworking and hungry and evidently has team spirit in abundance. Nigel Pearson has methodically made City better, piece by piece, and has our total confidence. Adam Pearson buying FC rather than Barnsley or Sheffield United removes the worry of him taking our boss with him at least.

10. If you think a player’s talent entitles him to repeatedly flout the club’s conduct policy and set a poor example to young professionals, and that he should be foremost in the manager’s plans for the team, you need to take a long, hard look at yourself.

PS

10a. We’d be remiss if we didn’t mention Hull FC’s crowd of 9,496 for a Challenge Cup quarter final on the same weekend City drew over 20,000 for a friendly (albeit against reasonably glamorous opposition). Yet we continually hear how Hull is and will always be ‘a rugby town’. If it is, it’s to the city’s shame, given the Hurley Berds’ feeble crowd and Hull KR fans kicking off in St. Helens.

Things We Think We Think #7

1. The club have taken a ‘novel’ approach to marketing the new away shirt, asking fans to hunt around the city centre for someone wearing it in order to post blurry phone camera pictures on Facebook. We don’t appear to be using adidas to market this shirt, which is an odd decision given that they know a thing or two about promoting sportswear. Oh and that sponsor patch is not the work of adidas if you’re looking to blame someone.

2. Speaking of sponsors, is this the most dismal, soul-destroyingly corporate-speak-bollocks-riddled assembling of words in the history of language?

3. Having a picture of the longest ‘serving’ supporter on the season passes is, however, a really nice touch.

4. The club should not, even idly, consider changing the crest.

5. Home friendlies are largely rubbish anyway, but replacing a game against former European Cup and UEFA Cup winners Feyenoord with one against a Fourth Division side? Pfffffffft.

6. It is going to cost £31 to watch Ipswich v City. Thirty-one pounds. Further comment seems entirely superfluous. Except…

7. … the person writing entry #7 is now not going to Ipswich.

8. Liam Cooper will be one of the best defenders in League One next season.

9. We’ve sent a Freedom of Information request to Humberside Police asking exactly why the Feyenoord friendly was cancelled. Legally they must reply by August 8th; it may be interesting to see what they come up with.

10. Jozy Altidore’s nomadic existence has now taken him to Holland. Can’t help but think that he’d be magnificent in the Championship though…

The club have taken a ‘novel’ approach to marketing the new away shirt, asking fans to hunt around the city centre for someone wearing it in order to post blurry phone camera pictures on Facebook. We don’t appear to be using adidas to market this shirt, which is an odd decision given that they know a thing or two about promoting sportswear. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Having a picture of the longest ‘serving’ supporter on the season passes is, however, a really nice touch.

The club should not, even idly, consider changing the crest.

Home friendlies are largely rubbish anyway, but replacing a game against former European Cup and UEFA Cup winners Feyenoord with one against Bradford? Pfffffffft.

Things We Think We Think #6

1. With a company that exchanges stolen goods for smack-money and East Yorkshire’s foremost ambulance-chaser on board, when can we expect Mark Maguire to announce that News International are to sponsor the manager’s programme notes?

2. City fans had better bloody not “do the Poznan” next season  – not because it’s not a decent spectacle, but because when you see even Castleford eggchasing fans doing it, you realise it’s become the Soccer AM “easy easy” for 2011

3. Paul Duffen plans to release an autobiography, supposedly warts and all. The ‘warts’ of his tenure as chairman are surely his, but given the man’s shameless attempts to pass the buck since his departure, we can expect so many pages of revisionist drivel that it should appear in the fiction section of any stockist that would sell it.

4. We haven’t had any ludicrous transfer rumours doing the rounds in a while, and that’s a good thing. You know the sort, “My mate has just fitted a Sky dish for Paul Scholes in Brough.” Yes, because he’d have bought a house and moved in already before any deal has been announced, obviously. “Someone said Michael Owen’s helicopter has landed at St. Stephens, he’s in TK Maxx right now.” Riiiiiiiiight.

5. The news of financial trouble at North Ferriby makes for some sad reading. They’re a wonderful little club and the annual trip to Church Road is one of the best away games of any year. City’s recent ‘success’ may have been to Ferriby’s detriment, as those Tiger Nationals who’d go to Ferriby when the Tigers were away had the option of watching the City game on an internet feed or on Albanian TV in a pub instead. Ferriby are charging £9 for a home game this coming season, a move designed to reduce the shortfall but one that may backfire and deter floating fans. City should fine Jimmy Bullard a weeks wages for having crap hair and channel it to Ferriby.

6. Alleged landlord on landlord violence could reduce the option of pre/post home match drinking hostelries by two. Both The George and Halfway House are currently boarded up.

7.  City going off to Slovenia to train is all well and good, but it’s a shame there isn’t a friendly there.

8. Thanks for cancelling our only decent home friendly, Humberside Police.

9. Lazy news editors, randomly pick one of these Jimmy Bullard quotes for an easy news piece, there’s one for every weekday: “I’ll take a pay cut to play for Ipswich”, “I’ve no problem with playing for Nigel Pearson”, “I respect the contract Hull City were stupid enough to give me”, “I just want to play football”, “Ouch, my knee!”

10. Why on earth did Tommy Docherty wear a Porto away shirt in our 1971-1972 team photo? Yes, yes, he’d managed the Portuguese club for four months prior to becoming assistant manager to Terry Neill, but it’s still an odd choice of garb given the circumstance.

Things We Think We Think #5

1. Once upon a time, playing Liverpool in a friendly would have been something to genuinely look forward to; this time it feels a bit “meh”.

2. Dele Adebola won’t score many but his potential to assist others in doing so could prove invaluable.

3. City should clarify the Richard Garcia situation immediately now that the player’s deal has officially ended.

4. If Tomasz Kuszczak does go back to West Brom, as has been heavily reported, then it’s even more of an opportunity for City to try to organise Boaz Myhill’s rightful return home to the Circle.

5. The FSF’s campaign for the return of standing at football is a highly commendable one.

6. While looking for their take on why the proposed friendly at Grimsby was cancelled, it was quite something to read that they’ve so far sold 550 season tickets – and are quite pleased by this.

7. It seems unfathomable now that we spent so many seasons below Grimsby, one Fishpackers fan once emailed us offering to send pictures of Wembley so we knew what it looked like. Heh.

8. Championship promotion campaigns are largely built on loans from high ranking Premier League clubs these days. Given our financial status, taking young talented players on loan, something we did very effectively last year, is probably the way we’ll go again. Given that most loans are concluded near the end of the transfer window, when it’s clear no club wants to permanently sign the player, we shouldn’t expect to have all of our signings in place now. The unending refrains of “when are we going to sign someone good?” from fans who should know better are the most tedious aspect of the close season.

9. It would be great if the club sold some sans-sponsor replica shirts for those who are Cash Converters conscientious objectors. It won’t happen, but it should, and would net the club money from those who like the shirt but loathe advertising a hock-shop.

10. That sponsor is going to tarnish a really lovely away shirt. Bah.

Things We Think We Think #4


1. A re-acquisition of Boaz Myhill would genuinely be more about being sensible than sentimental, and his return would be a no-lose situation for absolutely everybody involved with the club. Club legend adored by supporters – tick. Not needed where he is – tick. Never wanted to leave in the first place – tick. Club can afford him – tick. Club urgently need quality goalkeepers – tick.

2. This is perhaps the dullest pre-season in recent memory –  it’s possible to completely forget the existence of City for days at a time.

3. Why can’t the North Ferriby United friendly be on a Saturday? Sometimes it’s the most enjoyable fixture of the year, but isn’t as much fun on a schoolnight. Hostelries in the village, and presumably their own clubhouse, would probably prefer 2,000 City fans rocking up for a Saturday 3pm kick-off.

4. Similarly, having the first game of the season on a Friday evening promises to be a disconcerting experience, and probably a disappointing one given that night matches at the Circle are often quiet, dull affairs and making a full day of the opening day is part of the fun of football.

5. With Messrs Kilkenny and Danns apparently going elsewhere, Nigel Pearson needs to stop chasing midfielders called Neil.

6. Have City really let physio Simon Maltby go for “financial reasons” – and if so, is that wise? It doesn’t sound it.

7. Any idea why City weren’t involved in the Masters this year? It isn’t something to lose sleep over, but seeing Justin Whittle kick people up the arse while Leigh Jenkinson skewed shots against the Sheffield Arena’s ceiling was a great wiling away of a summer’s afternoon.

8. The reaction from the Scottish and Welsh FAs to the possibility of their players competing for a mooted Team GB at the Olympics is hysterical and narrow-minded, and goes a long way towards explaining why the only two halfway decent teams in Scotland are mired in sectarian bigotry in a fast-declining league, and why Wales’ only two decent sides would rather play in England.

9. Did you know that it’s Hull City’s 107th birthday tomorrow?

10….is the maximum number of pounds that can justifiably be charged for City v Macclesfield

Things We Think We Think #3

1. We note with no real surprise the lack of coverage and condemnation of rugby hooligans causing trouble in Leeds eight days ago.

2. It’s sad to see the club making long term backroom staff redundant. In terms of cost savings, the effect of this measure is surely minimal, as those going are on £12,000-15,000 a year, whereas there are unwanted players picking up £28,000-45,000 a week. If the club need to be ruthless in driving down spending, that’s understandable given the profligacy of former owners, but they appear to be killing the mosquito while leaving the bear to roam free.

3. It would be good to know the respective stadium valuations of both the Council and Club owners. Rumours persist that there is a vast chasm between the figures, and until one or both sides publicly state what they think is a fair price, rumours are all there is to go on.

4. At this time of year, every year, there is wailing and gnashing of teeth from some fans who imply City are doing nothing to bring in new players while claiming rival clubs are behaving like a hungry man at a buffet, snapping up prized signings left, right and centre. Neither statement is true.

5. If Allardyce whips the defence into shape…if they start well…if their new signings gel quickly…West Ham could be just about unstoppable next season

6. The League Cup draw is so unspeakably vile it makes you want to punch kittens.

7. Drawing 3,000 at home against Macclesfield is so 1997.

8. Nice to see Steve McClaren in a proper job again. He was a fine footballer for City, still talks the club up and maybe he ought to receive a warm reception when Forest visit the KC in the new season.

9. Yes, it’s not ideal playing Leeds home and away on Tuesday nights. But it’s still better than 12 noon on a Saturday or Sunday, which the gendarmes on both sides of the East-West divide would probably prefer.

10. If we’re lucky, one of the highlights of the new season’s opening weeks will be the Rotherhams and Swindons of the world trying to play Barcelonaesque tiqui-taca, until a string of defeats brings them to their senses some time around late September

Things We Think We Think #2


1. Assem Allam said last week that the reason he wants to own the KC is so he can use the freehold to get a mortgage and build the planned sports village. If he does that he’s risking Hull City’s home in the hope that a sports village brings in enough money to pay back the mortgage, and later make him/the club profit. Is it worth the risk? The reason swimming pools and squash courts tend to be run by local authorities is because they don’t bring in that much money. Why would Allam’s complex be different? Allam describes the proposed sports village as a gift, but if he plans to pay for it with a mortgage taken out on the stadium it’s not a gift at all, it’s a leveraged purchase.

2. Allam also said he thinks football clubs should be owned by their communities. The stadium is already publicly owned, but he wants to change that.

3. When asked what value he puts on Adam Pearson’s continued involvement, Allam said Pearson was a good man but the club would go on without him. Of course it would, but it would leave a dearth of experience in running a football club.

4. This is an excellent piece on great Tigers teams down the years, but if we have to have a ‘winner’, then the 2008 team of bonafide achievers, that made our dreams come true, must be it.

5. Discussing who we’d like to get on the opening day of the season is futile and pointless. The only surefire thing about next season’s fixtures is that both games against Leeds will be deliberately planned to inconvenience the many.

6. He wasn’t universally popular despite successive promotions, but seeing Peter Taylor on Sky’s coverage of the U21 tournament prompted warm memories of the happy days during his reign.

7. Those club emails, full of “OMG! LOL! Look at this funny YouTube video” stuff are pretty cringeworthy. Communicate better please.

8. Whoever digitally altered the picture of Liam Rosenior modelling the new kit went a bit overboard on the colour saturation, to the point where Liam looks to have changed race. Also, the socks are the same as last seasons, odd given that they’re being sold at a knock-down price of £2 in Tiger Leisure. Maybe they aren’t the socks to be used, amber hose would look better with that kit.

9. City should offer Richard Garcia a one-year deal with incentives while he recovers from a bad injury. He deserves it and they can afford it.

10. Nottingham Forest have joined Cardiff in rewarding their managers for a play-off finish by sacking them – would we show similar ingratitude to Nigel Pearson next summer if we lose in the play-offs?

Things we think we think… #1


1. Adam Pearson’s lack of a stake in the club makes us worry he’ll want total control of someone else. It can’t be fulfilling to ask permission to do things that previously he’d sign off as owner/chairman, or to merely be a salaried employee when you have the talent/know how to be in charge. He was rumoured to be interested in Barnsley in the national media, is it just a matter of time before he goes or could the Allams sell a small stake to Pearson to hold on to such a valuable asset?

2. Neil Danns would be an excellent signing.

3. Cash Converters isn’t the most prestigious sponsor for a football club, but City fans going apoplectic, writing to the club to complain about a deal not yet announced, really need to get a grip. Football club’s sponsors do not reflect on the city the team play in one little bit, if you think Geordies are ardent savers because their jersey has Northern Rock’s logo on it, or that the burghers of Blackburn all have immaculately painted walls because of Rover’s association with Crown Paints, you’re a foolish knave.

4. Sponsor aside, that adidas shirt alleged to be our new strip was quite nice. Yes, it’s the same template as Stoke once more, but bold stripes (and on both sides) and more amber than black is our preferred style of City shirt..

5. Argentina blue is a nice colour for an away shirt.

6. Paul Duffen’s Twitter account, if it’s real, highlights a familiar self awareness deficit.

7. For an end of season showpiece event with real drama, the Championship Play-off final shits all over the FA Cup final.

8. The League Cup draw is next week. Unless this produces a tick ground for the nerd community, the competition should be scrapped.

9. Some egg-chasing fans have complained that Sky Sports didn’t televise the derby this weekend. They don’t seem to realise that what they see as ‘Rugbygeddon’ and the most important sporting event in history is of little interest to people outside of East Yorkshire, and not that much within.

10. The Hull Daily Mail’s new website is really, really, REALLY shit.

The idea for this feature is shamelessly stolen from Peter King of Sports Illustrated.