Hull City’s performances so far have been typified by their captain and leader at the back Curtis Davies. The 31-year old Englishman has been one of the best players in the Premier League so far and has led by example and has organised his backline against the so called big teams to perfection. Makeshift centre-back Jake Livermore seems inspired playing alongside his captain and has himself performed wonderfully well against some established center forwards.
Manchester United suffered a lot to break down the dogged defence of the Tigers, and Arsenal sure won’t also have it easy. After all, with 31 interceptions,11 blocks and 43 clearances Hull do have at the moment the best defender in Europe in their ranks as their captain.
They Have Nothing To Lose
Mike Phelan was under huge pressure at the start of the season considering the dire fitness situation of his players, the lack of cover and resources to compete in the league. Most pundits even identified, very rightly, the Tigers to be the first team to be relegated this season. The paradox of the team being branded as losers and inferior to their opponents, have worked in their favour. The players rallied for the manager playing freely without any pressure to perform brilliantly so far causing a few upsets and collecting a very promising 7 points from a possible twelve.
For all the reasons mentioned in the above paragraph, Hull City players seemed to have come together to form a great bond amongst themselves on the pitch which is reflected by their displays on the pitch.
On the opening weekend, Hull City produced a thoroughly professional performance to outfox champions Leicester and followed it up with a brilliant performance against Swansea. Their best defensive performance came against Manchester United where Marcus Rashford scored to give the Red Devils a win in the dying seconds of the match at Old Trafford. After that heartbreak, the team showed real character in their next match against Burnley where Steven Defour’s exceptional strike gave the Clarets the lead but Phelan’s men never gave up and got their reward in the 95th minute via Robert Snodgrass.
The never say die attitude and determination has proved vital for the Tigers so far, against Arsenal they will be in that same frame of mind as they will step on to the field as the underdogs and that is where they are at their most dangerous.
Arka Tarun Mukherjee
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