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Hull City vs. Burnley

KC Stadium

Saturday 10th April 2010


A Burnley Win or it is Hull Over

The Clarets are currently second from bottom in a perilous situation and already four points adrift of fourth from bottom club, West Ham. We now face the third from bottom club, Hull City at the KC Stadium on Saturday in a game that is clearly a vital six-pointer for both clubs. This really is 'last chance saloon` time for the Clarets with Hull three points ahead of the Clarets with a game in hand. They also now have a superior goal difference after our awful display against Manchester City at Turf Moor last week. We suffered a 6-1 tonking but the club would have been more concerned by the anger and frustration shown by the fans. Burnley had conceded three goals within the first seven minutes and some fans were already making a beeline for the exits. With the Clarets 5-0 down at half-time, a dejected and bedraggled looking Brian Laws had to run the gauntlet of jeering fans as he walked towards the tunnel with torrential rain now falling from the storm clouds above. He got a similar treatment at the end of the game and things simply don`t seem right at the club at the moment. Dark days indeed and Clarets fans badly need a tonic. We truly are playing woeful football currently though with just one win in 14 games for Brian Laws and his men. It is not so much their losing at the moment; it`s the manner of their losing! They seem to look clueless in defence, midfield and attack and there is an apparent lack of passion and commitment not to mention a complete lack of quality. That simply has to change at the KC Stadium if we are to stand any chance of avoiding what looks like almost certain relegation. A defeat would not confirm our relegation but most Clarets fans would see it that way with just four games left to play and the two home games remaining being against two clubs fighting for that 4th place spot and qualification for the Champions League (Liverpool and Spurs)

Predicted Team Sheet

The team selection could be a dilemma for the gaffer, does he wring the changes or does he stick with a basic eighteen that has simply failed to deliver in the last few games no matter what the tactics and formation?

I think he may be tempted to play Steven Caldwell in the back four. The skipper is now chomping at the bit for a start after recovering from a persistent groin injury. Caldwell may well be selected more for his captaincy and motivational qualities than his ability as a defender. You could probably argue that Duff, Carlisle, Cort or even Bikey might be better options in the centre of defence but maybe we need some influential leadership to get this team playing to its full capacity again.

Brian Laws has strenuously denied this week any falling out with players following speculation that he had allegedly had a bust up with Kevin McDonald, Clarke Carlisle, Andre Bikey and Robbie Blake The bust-up was allegedly precipitated at half time following that grim performance against City last Saturday. McDonald was substituted at half-time against City with the Clarets already 5-0 down and after a shower he took it upon himself to bomb off down the road to a local boozer and watch the second half on the telly with his dad. His actions led to a fine by the club and a profuse apology from Kev but is all adds to the feeling that all is not well at the club. Blake was another casualty at half-time and he too was allegedly not happy about the situation. Who knows what is really happening. We might get a clue from Laws team selection for Hull and most Clarets fans will be eager to see whether the above mentioned players feature in the eighteen. Laws has certainly made it clear that the incident with McDonald is now fully resolved and that he will be in contention for a place in the squad to face the Tigers.

This is such an important game for the Clarets, I think Laws will stick with experience rather than risk further experimentation with fringe players. He will have to hope the players find that extra something in terms of grit, determination and passion. We certainly can`t afford and will not accept another performance like the last two home games.

I would go with this line-up below with either Nugent or Fletcher playing a wider role with the other upfront. If that is not working then we need to move to 4-4-2 or even 4-3-3 and we have plenty of options in attack. I have kept Fletcher in the starting eleven because I don`t think Laws would consider dropping the striker. There is an argument to suggest that Fletcher has been the weakest of the strikers in recent games and certainly Paterson looks to have more bite and passion but only if we play him as a pure striker in partnership with another striker. He is wasted on the wing

Jensen, Mears, Duff or Cort, Caldwell, Fox, Alexander, Eagles, Cork, McDonald, Nugent, Fletcher,

Subs: Weaver, Duff or Cort, Bikey, Elliott, Blake, Paterson, Thompson

Hull City Team News:

Ian Dowie does have a couple of injury concerns.

Dutch international midfielder George Boateng has been given a 45% chance of playing. He was carried off on a stretcher in Hull`s defeat to Stoke last Saturday after being hit in the face from the boot of Tuncay during the Stoke striker`s overhead kick attempt. Dowie is waiting to see if he shrugs off any sign of concussion after scans and x-rays showed no serious injuries.

Republic of Ireland winger Stephen Hunt is almost certainly sidelined. He is still struggling to shake off a foot injury.

Centre back, Ibrahima Sonko on loan from Stoke however looks set to return after missing the defeat against his parent club and defender, Andy Dawson is also in contention to start after returning to the bench at the Britannia Stadium following a hamstring injury.

Player to watch: Jimmy Bullard

Jimmy Bullard seems to be a motivational type of player that can inspire his team mates. He has been plagued with injuries at Hull but they always seem to play better when he is in their side.

Bullard signed from Fulham for a record fee of £5 million in January 2009. The 31 year old midfielder does seem injury prone though and in his debut for Hull he picked up a knee injury that would later prove to be cruciate ligament damage; an injury that would keep him out for the rest of the season. He returned in October 2009. In a game against Villa though in December Bullard went up for an aerial challenge against James Milner and landed awkwardly, injuring his left knee. A scan revealed he would be sidelined again this time for six-eight weeks but he is now back in the team. Bullard also has the knack of scoring scores although mainly from the penalty spot. In 11 appearances for the club this season he has notched up 5 goals.

Burnley Team News:

Stephen Jordan picked up a knee injury in the derby against Rovers and missed the 6-1 shocker against City last Saturday. He looks doubtful for the Hull game and with Kalvenes` contract terminated early this week, it looks likely that Danny Fox will keep his place at left back.

Skipper, Steven Caldwell is also in contention for a return after recovering from a persistent groin and abdominal injury that has kept him sidelined for most of the season. He last played against Wolves at Molineux just before Christmas. Caldwell came through his second Reserves game this week without any problems and Laws could take the view that his captaincy could be vital in motivating the players to succeed against Hull.

Our only other injury concern is Chris McCann who recently had surgery to repair a slightly torn cartilage. He will probably play no further part this season with the recovery period expected to be four-six weeks.

Player to watch: Kevin McDonald

After being disciplined by the club this week, Kev needs to show he has put all this behind him by putting in a good strong performance assuming Brian Laws gives him the chance to redeem himself. He let himself down against City both on and off the pitch last Saturday and Clarets fans will be looking for a vast improvement. McDonald can look very effective and solid setting up an attack but he also has to track back more and help out the defence instead of ball watching.

Back to the Future

In the 1975-76 season, the last time the Clarets were in the top flight, Hull City were a struggling side in the old Division 2 and finished 14th that season. In the following season, with the Clarets now relegated we could only salvage a point at Turf Moor in a 0-0 draw and got thumped 4-1 at Boothferry Park.

The last time we played them of course was earlier in the season at Turf Moor at the end of October last year. We won 2-0 and indeed that was our last victory in 2009 and we have won just once since against West Ham at home in February this year. Graham Alexander scored a brace that day. A controversial penalty was awarded to the Clarets after 20 minutes after Hunt was adjudged to have brought down Mears although the video footage later showed Mears may simply have slipped. Grezza made no mistake with his spot kick. In the second half Hull were reduced to ten men after a double-yellow for Geovanni. The Hull midfielder had earlier been frustrated after he scored a goal which was ruled out by the referee after spotting an infringement in our area. He protested so much he picked up his first yellow card and two minutes later he fouled Fletcher to earn his second and receive his marching orders. On 77 minutes the Clarets put Hull out of their misery. Fletcher and substitute, Kevin McDonald were both involved in the build up. It was the Scottish under 21 international though who passed the ball square to Graham Alexander who driving forward then decided to have a go himself. He let rip from 22 yards out and the ball sweetly found the back of the net making it the perfect day for Grezza and all Clarets fans.

In Hull`s Championship promotion season during 2007-8 both our games against them are instantly ones that Clarets fans will want to forget. We lost a dire game at Turf Moor 1-0 in November 2007; a result that was the death knell for former gaffer, Steve Cotterill. That was to be Cotterill`s last game in charge before he left by mutual consent. It didn`t get much better against the Tigers under new manager, Owen Coyle. We lost 2-0 in the return game at the KC Stadium in March 2008.

I mention that season as it potentially contains some interesting parallels. Brian Laws has been under some pressure recently and has had to deny player unrest and bust-ups in the dressing room. The media too this week have been baying for blood with both the Mail and Mirror suggesting Laws could soon be sacked. Could a game against Hull once more dictate the fate of our manager?

Ref Watch:

Experienced Yorkshire referee, Martin Atkinson is in charge of this relegation battle. He was appointed to the Select Group Referees list in 2005. A year later, in 2006, he was appointed to the FIFA International Referees list. In 2008-9 he took charge of four UEFA Champions League games which included FC Zurich versus Real Madrid at Letzigrund and Inter Milan versus Dynamo Kiev at the San Siro. We will have to hope this appointment is not a bad omen for Burnley. Atkinson has refereed just two games involving the Clarets this season, both of them away and both of them involving fellow strugglers trying to avoid the drop. We lost both games too first to Wolves at Molineux and then to Bolton at the Reebok! Clarets fans will be praying for third time lucky at Hull.

Match Prediction:

Hull City have struggled badly this season and are desperate to stay up knowing that relegation could put the club in severe financial difficulty. Manager, Phil Brown has already paid the price for failure and is now on 'garden leave` with Iain Dowie brought in to try and rescue the club. The Tigers have managed just two wins in their last ten league games plus two draws but that is still a better record than the Clarets. They did win their last home game albeit against a weakened Fulham team but suffered a 2-0 away defeat against Stoke last Saturday so once more their confidence may well have been dented. Mind you they didn`t get tonked 6-1 at home! Hull`s home form is inconsistent to say the least. They have won six, drawn six and lost five at the KC Stadium this season. We all know realistically this is our last throw of the dice to try and stay up. I have no option but to predict a Clarets victory and our first away win of a long, hard season which has deteriorated badly since Coyle left. I have no rationale to back up the win other than blind faith. Clarets fans could probably take defeat and be resigned to the drop but only if we put in a good performance and can truly say at the end of the match that we gave it all we got. Burnley have to dig deep on Saturday and find something special, something which will lift demoralised Clarets fans. There has been plenty of talk from the gaffer this week; it`s now time to 'walk it`. Come on you Clarets let`s get our first away win of the season and our biggest, most important win! We need something to cheer about in 2010; a year which so far has truly become our annus horribilis Hull 0-1 Burnley!

Next Match

It is another tricky game away with the Clarets travelling to the Stadium of Light to play Sunderland on Saturday 17th April (Kick-Off 3pm). This could be an intriguing game if we manage to beat Hull the week before. A victory against Hull would have rekindled our hopes of avoiding the drop and Sunderland are already effectively safe with nothing to play for but pride.

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The Journalist

Writer: turfmanphil Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Friday April 9 2010

Time: 11:12AM

Your Comments

I just want one simple thing, our first away win of the season. Is it really asking too much? I know this, if we lose and show no passion or determination whatsoever, I am sorry but its time for Laws to go. He will be in an untenable position in my opinion and will have proved conclusively after all his hype this week that he simply can't motivate this team, even with the help of a Sports psychologist (Shish are things that bad?)
Passion and determination, how do you define that Phil. Thats not a trick question, because at Wigan I thought they showed both, against Stoke and Man City in the 2nd half of both of these games they showed both. I don't want 3 players sent off and us then debating if that was passion and determination or complete stupidity. Work hard. close them down, break in numbers, get back, track back and above all elese concentrate from the first whistle to the last.....and like tmp says just please win for us....please
Can't add much to Vin's words. A win, a win, my kingdom for a win !
The phrase clutching at straws comes to mind VR! ;-) I wasn't one that booed when Laws walked off the pitch at half-time and full-time but I bet those fans can define passion & determination better than I can!
Passion and determination? If I wanted advice on anything from the boo-squad on things beginning with p & d, it would be poor attitude and defeatism.
Couch Potato
Burnley in a cake walk! Come on Clarets!
Although I dont condone what they did, i can fully undersatnd why they did it and maybe it is about time we accepted that quite a lot of fans are hurting deeply inside and expressing those feelings in different ways. Passionately Disappointed would be another P&D acronym and who are we to say they are wrong after such a pathetic 6-1 tonking! Thats not defeatism that ism defeat on a large scale and one that every fan has a right to be disgusted about. [Edited by turfmanphil]
I would never boo the players or manager, but at the same time if they were within hearing distance I may shout somthing.
Grimsby Claret
Well I often wonder being close to the Directors Box in Bob Lord Stand whether some verbal shouts of disapproval will be going their way soon if this continues. They were all on Easter hols though at City game so it wouldn't have made any difference! Kilby at the Rovers game though looked both speechless and furious. Surprised there has been no announcement from them this week, Kilby was in Florida I think but it's still easy to send over electronic messages. [Edited by turfmanphil]
To be honest - I just want a performance of passion and commitment ( as has been mentioned above) and if it isnt good enough for a win - then so be it. The last minute defeat to Wigan, well, I was gutted - but I was proud of the way we played. In other games ( Rovers, City 1st half and more) it was almost as if the white flag was up. Yes we will probably go down, but lets show some fight about it. They worked hard to get here, dont give it up without a fight! As for Laws leaving if we lose, I am not sure what benefit that would have TMP? As we stand, Is their any difference between now and after the season? Would that not be a better time to take stock?
I certainly don't agree with the booing of the players and manager having said that I do think Laws needs to go sooner rather than later. However it is catch 22 I desperately want a win at Hull, but I also want Laws to go.
If Laws went what backroom staff have we got.....none. Back to Dobbo and Vince to see out the season? Lets face it unless he walks by his choice he will be here till the end of the season.
And I dont see any benefit from anything else happening VR.
Agree Dale, he just has to see out the season and who knows if we have the result we all crave this afternoon he could yet end up as the 2nd coming!!! I know I am clutching at straws but whilst I can clutch I will!!! Only an hour drive to Hull, closest game for me all season, not sure what to do with myself this morning!
Poor performances, dressing room bust-ups and all kinds of stuff being reported in the press. Is this all down to Laws then ? I don't think so myself, more the result of a slow descent into lack of self belief by the team as a whole, and not helped by injuries to key players, loosing matches that we could have won, appalling referee decisions etc, etc. It could all be turned around by one good performance , and this match against Hull is the match to do it in. There's nothing else to say really is there? Their performance today will answer a lot of questions concerning self belief and the dressing room. Come on you Clarets , this is the one to win.
I wonder what Caldwell and Grezza are doing? The club Captain and player coach, how hard are they working to unify the squad? We need leaders in the dressing room with experience, not petulant school kids. I would want to be asking both of these players what they are doing to unite the players in our hour of need?
Grezza is certainly doing his bit with the players and has been spending the week telling everyone to get more aggresive and competetive right from the start. In his words . ."training has been a bit tasty" . He's been highly critical of himself as well as the whole team and has warned Hull to expect a "fired-up" Burnley side. I sincerely hope for all our sakes that he's right.
Jack Cork, Martin Paterson and Wade Elliott all return to the Clarets' starting line-up for this afternoon's crunch game at relegation rivals Hull City. Burnley: Jensen, Mears, Fox, Duff, Cort, Alexander, Elliott, Cork, Paterson, Fletcher, Nugent. Subs: Carlisle, Caldwell, Blake, Bikey, Thompson, Eagles, Weaver. Hull: Myhill, Mendy, Dawson, McShane, Sonko, Mouyokolo, Boateng, Bullard, Altidore, Fagan, Kilbane. Subs: Barmby, Geovanni, Folan, Marney, Vennegoor of Hesselink, Cairney, Duke Read more:
Hull take the lead Kilbane ffs 2 mins gone Hull 1-0 Burnley
Just seen the team Laws has Picked - rubbish! No Blake or Eagles but Patterson in midfield! the same rubbish defence. Crap!
1-0 down already, absolute4ly no bloody defending. We should have played our old team - Carlisle, Caldwell etc. I could pick a better team than Laws. No defence and an attack that's like jelly. Whoops - nearly a second - no guts, no committment. Laws has to go NOW.
Well done Beast but Bullard should have scored. We are awful. Absolutely nothing creative at all in the final third. Why is patterson playing instead of Blake. Laws hasn't a clue. Hull are poor but are outplaying us.
E I E I E I O BACK TO THE CHAMPIONSHIP WE GO when we get demoted this is what we will sing thank you owen coyle thank you for not a f-ing thing! Sorry its all I could make up on the spur of the moment!!
Get in there Burnley get one back Paterson Hull 1-1 Burnley Come on now Burnley!!
Very good SC ;-)
Goal - well done Pato. At least he tries very hard and he's a grumpy little ant! C,mon you Clarets!!
1-1 at the break Come on Burnley at least get one win away from home!!
Free-kick Burnley Mears over the bar, Burnley plying the pressure Duff just misses noooooo!!!!
Penalty for Burnley Alexander scores Laws is god ;-)
Another Penalty!!! great work from Nugent Alexander scores Hull 1-3 Burnley
What a great penalty Grezza. 2-1 c'mon!
Just maybe we ain't going back just yet get in there BFC
Another great penalty. Is Grezza the best penalty taker ever? I think he's the best I've ever seen.
Well done Duff, Caldwell replaces him! and Fletcher off too Bikey on
Wade Elliott free-kick sails into the net Burnley 4-1 Hull full-time our first away win brilliant
Saw the whole game on pc we deserved it well done burnley.
Grimsby Claret
Well done you Clarets! We may well still go down but at least we showed spirit and guts and we won away! My vote for man of the match goes hands down to Duff. Had an average game last week along with everyone else but has been great since he came back in and his game tonight showed the strength of character that has been missing. He was getting stuck in with blood on his head and it was him in the penalty area that got us the first penalty, Brilliant. It's not just skill but application that gets you through and that's what makes Rooney so good and Berbatov so average.
well earned and well deserved
:) :) :) brilliant performance in the second half from the clarets! Watched the whole game online and had my claret pants on supporting you lol! It didn't loook good after 10 minutes but hey, 4-1 - brilliant!!! How are you all feeling now? I told you weeks ago, you still have a great chance of staying up :)
What did I tell you... Burnley in a cake walk! Well done gentlemen.
What a game, felt like we had won promotion again and not just an away game. I am a bit hoarse. When first one went in thought he we go again but lets be fair pulled it back and we did well. Grezza was awesome, he was sshouting and screaming throughout and had so much passion. However my star man has got to go to the fans, they were awesome. One nil down all you could hear was us singing 'we are the longside burnley na na na na...' They were fantastic throughout, got behind the lads and I think we made a difference come on. "Were winning awaaayyy, how S*** must you be, were winning away!"
Agree Skutter, we just sang and sang. I think it is just our mentality and we were all together. We know the score and at one nil down we can moan or get behind the team........ozjean...some of your posts above need deleting. Wade Grezza and Cork did the trick. Pato Nuge and Fletch will always have trouble with the defending part of playing out wide but give credit were credit is due.....LAWS PICKED HIS TEAM THAT WON 4 - 1 AWAY 2 points more away from home than Coyle and a monkey off our back. THANKYOU...more to follow when I calm down!
Easy to say so with hindsight but thought the team selection was right today. Little wobbly after that early goal but much more solid look to the side with a good balance of defence and attack in the whole unit. Credit to the manager and players - they took stick last week but deserve a pat on the back today.
Whether or not they were before this match is another matter, but make no mistake these boys were playing for Laws today. What a result, let’s hope the self belief takes them on from here. Come on you Clarets. . . . . Feel . . . so good . . . . just like I knew that I would now . . . . .so fine . . . .so fine . . .
Hey a chelsea fan here askin how did our boy Corky play? and i wish u all good luck with ur fight to stay up and i really hope u do.
Great result for you today. Still a very hard ask but at least you showed the desired fight.
SFC Forever
Cork had a great game, he has a lot of energy and skill and imo was our best midfielder. He needs more games like this where he can show how good he is, would take him on a season loan for next year right now. I was at the game so able to see his work rate both up and down the pitch and across the midfield which impressed yet again, often you don't see that work on the TV.
Just shows that some Icelandic types need a boot up their backsides. Great result. Brilliant! Hope MUFC flogg Ba***rd Rovers.
Can't delete VinRouge, they were what I was thinking at the time (after a bottle of vin rouge!) when our pathetic defending after 2 minutes looked like Man City was to be repeated. Fair enough we showed a lot of fight, which has been missing, and deserved the win which I enjoyed as much as anyone but the defending is still awful and a slightly better side than Hull would have carried on with it. What it does do is give us hope for the future and perhaps show that the club isn't in the complete disarray we thought. It does not cover up the deficiencies however and Hull were truly bad. Like TMP, I have a right to say what I feel at the time, especially in a moment of severe stress! I didn't believe the end of the world was nigh when we kept losing but neither do I think all is now rosy, and Laws a genius, after a win against a side who are level with us.
Spot on ozjean, I guess its no different to me having my head in my hands when we conceded and saying oh dear me! You just typed it. Its a really hard call Paterson and Nugent or Blake and Eagles and yesterday Laws got it right. MOTD was interesting when the commentator said he thought we should take our keeper off after 17minutes......But thats another good debate.
Great result for the clarets - really hope you can do the Houdini act this season, especially by beating Tottingham. Best of luck.
VR - Yes that made me laugh about subbing Jensen. Mind you, I have been randomly laughing for the past 16 hours or so :-)
Great result lads and what a comeback after last week - well done.
Let's hope you have an off day like usual on Saturday against us at the Stadium of Light.
Still keep pinching myself to make sure it hasn't all been a dream and we did win away and we did do the double on a team.
And a double double for Grezza!
Not only a brilliant result at last, but also excellent to hear that the players are all behind Laws. Grezza : "The manager, the staff behind him, the fans and the players, we're all one group and we don't want to let anyone come in between that" , and Duff states that the dressing room is 100% behind Laws. It's still a long shot to say the least, but if they can carry the self belief and team spirit into the remaining matches, then who knows what might happen?
We are 16 - 4 up against Hull, I watched it for the 2nd time on Sky the whole 90 minutes last night, then I did MOTD, awoke a bit like Dale chuckling randomly so I watched the rerun of MOTD this morning.....I am in training now for MOTD2 which could see us go 20 - 5 up against Hull. Then back to the Golf. What a weekend for chuckling....
Had a brilliant day yesterday - we should win away more often! - went with a good mate who is a Hull fan and great to catch up with the Sheffield Clarets for that wonderful second half. The players, manager and fans deserve great credit. As do Hull fans who were unbelievably courteous in defeat, will always have a soft spot for them for that. While one swallow does not make a summer and all that, everything I asked for in the preview came to fruition, we got a PERFORMANCE we could be proud of, and the manager got his team selection right - the decision to give the defence a chance to redeem themselves particularly paid dividends. Graham Alexander should be awarded a testimonial season next season in my opinion, ideally shared with Robbie Blake.
Yep great day out and at last summat to cheer about on the road. Really impressed by the effort they put in despite it looking like another bad day at first with Hull scoring in 2nd minute. We were really dodgy for first 15 mins and then we got into it more and the rest as they say is history. It will be really frustrating if we go down for the sake of about 3 points but let's hope for the great escape to continue. Yep Hull fans surprised me too, first time I had been to KC and heard they can be a rough lot but all I saw was appreciation and clapping,
Cuban you weren't in Row G or H near the stewards? If so we may have been sat near each other. I had my nurse with me if you were sat in that area if not glad you had a brilliant day like me.
Match Report will follow tomorrow. Exhausted, was an emotional day yesterday
First half I might have been VR then I moved towards the back when I spotted Crosspool. By the way Crosspool, with Torres and Fletcher both putting in no-shows today, Grezza comes in to my fantasy XI after all, so maybe our little battle ain't over yet :) :)

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