Tuesday, 8 November 2011

A Day in Hull with the Tigers

Last Saturday I watched a foreign satellite broadcast of the Hull City v West Ham match but David Gold confirmed that 5,000 supporters made the 300 plus mile round trip to the City of Hull.

Two of these fans were Ben and James who filed match reports for MooreThanJustAPodcast West Ham podcast http://moorethanjustapodcast.podbean.com

Both Match Reports are below:

Ben Surdeau's Report

Hull City v West Ham

First Half:

From the kick off Hull City looked more likely to score although we did create a couple of half chances.  It was clear that Carew wasn't having a good day. His hold up play wasn't what you'd usually expect and there was at least once chance where he should have troubled their goalkeeper (in the end I think he fell over to try and buy a penalty).  Baldock seemed to be playing out on the wing.  Sam Baldock is not a winger and we looked exposed when they were in possession. We rode our luck throughout the first half with Faye and Green making some crucial blocks.  Faubert looked okay at right back but got caught out on a couple of occasions.  We were wasteful with our possession.  Nolan didn't support Carew properly and nor did Baldock because he was out on the wing. Overall we were quite solid defensively and survived the half.  We had a couple of chances but 0-0 at half time was the best we could have hoped for.

Second half:

Carew unsurprisingly didn't emerge for the second half and was replaced by Carlton Cole. We also seemed to alter our shape somewhat. Nolan played deeper with Diop and Noble pushed forward. Baldock also seemed to get infield more from his wing.  The change in shape improved us immediately - it was great to see Big Sam applying some tactical nous and changing it at half time - it was a positive early substitution that our previous two managers would have bottled out of making.  Baldock won the corner that set up his goal. Brilliant to see him dropping off his marker at the back post in anticipation of a flick on. He looks like a great poacher.  For the second goal it was nice to see the West Ham old school combine for a very tidy goal. Carlton beat his man neatly and played the ball through for Collison who was steaming in from midfield.  Collison had actually been pretty quiet for the game but that was a great way to add to his contribution.  We looked to hold onto the lead from that moment.  After the 2nd goal for the vast majority I thought we restricted them to shots from distance which was pleasing.  There were a few opportunities but Rob Green made 3 world class saves and we saw out the game.

We were well worth the win overall. MOTM is a toss up between Green and Faye who were both outstanding against what is a very good team at home. Honorable mention to Carlton Cole for his impact.  He looked quality and played to his potential.  I understand some peoples frustrations with Carlton but on his day he can run rings round the opposition.  Today he got the support he needed to do just that and wasn't expected to hold up high balls all afternoon (although actually his hold up play when it was required was brilliant).

Worst player: Kevin Nolan. We carry him and for me, Mark Noble does Nolan's job as well as his own.  I want nothing more than for Nolan to play to his potential but it's not happening yet.

We haven't lost a league game in which we've scored a goal this season. We're no longer the team who goes 2-0 up and Wigan and then loses 3-2. I for one am grateful to Big Sam for giving us a bit of grit. We've won 5 on the road, thats the sort of thing that makes driving home from Hull a lot more bearable!

All in all a quality day, very friendly locals who let us into the Walton working mens club before kick off and even played Bubbles for us on the stereo.

Atmosphere first half was useless, Hull were louder than us by a long way.  It got better after half time when we scored.  It's almost like the away fans this season are quieter because we are expecting to win a few this season...very odd.

Bizarre moment of the afternoon*:  2 Hull fans were near to the away end with their baby in the pram at the front so some of the West Ham started singing: 'That baby's not yours, that baby's not yours, who is the father, that baby's not yours'.  This was followed by 'does she take it up the a**e?' sang to the baby's mother at which point the guy went up behind her and mimed having sex with her whilst she was looking in the pram.  For some reason the stewards then threw the bloke out and the mum followed, giving the away end the finger on the way.  Charming couple, I'm sure they will be very proud telling their child about their first Hull City match...

James Catlin's Report on the Cost of an Away day in Hull

I am West Ham fan originally from Romford but now live in Liverpool. 

Left my house with my mate (also from Romford) at about, 10.30 am Stopped of at a 'Welcome Break' on the M62 for 10-15 mins then carried on to Hull. Got to the Stadium around 12,30. Parked up at a local Car park which cost £5. Found a Local fish and Chips bar, which cost £6 each for Large Fish Chips and a Drink.

As the first was playing I didn't think we played too well only created the odd chance and could of gone in 1 or 2 down easily. I think Hull was the better side in the first half, and we didn't like the way they played. They made it very difficult for us. Kevin Nolan was anonymous in the first half and didn't lead the team by example. John Carew also didn't perform as well as we've seen him. His first touch was awful.

The second half was more brighter, we created more, and we didn't play 'Long Ball' as much, we passed it around and it was good to watch. The atmosphere in the away end didn't seem as good as it has done, but when Sam Baldock broke the dead lock it gave all the fans a lift, and the atmosphere was suddenly great. The second goal was fantastic, a proper team goal, and the build up to it was immense. Great finish by Jack Collision.

We looked tired towards the last 15 mins, and we went back to defence football. If your 2-0 up away, the home team will put huge pressure on your defence with 15-20 mins to go. We was playing too deep, and they was taking advantage of that, and if it wasn't for Green's save in the last 15-20 minutes could of easily been a draw. 

I'd give the overall performance a 6/10 by the team 

Unless its because the 'Expectations' are high this year, the atmosphere at games dont feel the same as last year, I remember Birmingham, West Brom, Blackburn, Tottenham, Sunderland, Blackpool, Stoke, and Wolves away last year and the atmosphere was rocking. This year it seems a bit different! If it is because of the 'Expectations' then it must be boring to be a Man Utd fan ha. 

Ticket - £15
Petrol (full tank) £68.79
Food - £6
Bet - £3
Programme - £3

Total - £95.79 WELL WORTH IT :) 

Thanks to Ben and James for their reports.

I did an interview on Sports Tonight TV on the game which can be found below:

We also covered the game on episode 11 of MooreThanJustAPodcast which can be found below.

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