Hull City finally ended their worrying streak of losing matches by securing their first victory in five Premier League matches, but the draw caused Tottenham to be unable to move closer to the top 4 spots.
Hull haven’t scored a single league goal in 2014, but it seems as though all they needed was to make some smart moves in the transfer window as new signing Shane Long just took 12 minutes to change that. The player scored on his home debut after calmly sending the ball past Hugo Lloris. It seemed as though Hull were going to take all three points from the game but for a good goal from Spurs summer signing Paulinho. Tottenham dominated possession in the second half but Hull looked equally threatening on the break and Jelavic went close a couple of times, which required saves from Lloris to deny him the goal. Tottenham had two penalty appeals turned down as they looked for a response but Hull were comfortable during the first half.
The credit for Hull’s brave display must go to former Lilywhite Tom Huddlestone, as he played a key role in the first chance as well as the new front two of Long and Jelavic as the duo showed signs of a promising partnership that definitely possessed more firepower and threat than the Tottenham attack.
Spurs defender Michael Dawson was skeptical about the match beforehand and had spoken about Hull City doing well at home and Tom Huddlestone being their key man:
“When you play Hull it’s a big, big test. In the two games at home they set up and made themselves hard to beat and worked their socks off. With the quality that they’ve got that we know about with Tom – and obviously they’ve made some good signings in January – it’ll be a tough game, but it’s about us.
Hull would have been disappointed by not getting the three points as it would have lifted them to the 10th place, however Steve Bruce’s side sits in the 13th spot for now. Another positive for Bruce would be that his Tigers have now ended their four match losing streak.
For Tottenham, the scoreline would have been very disappointing as a win would have got them closer the fourth spot competitors Liverpool and ahead of Everton. However, the draw keeps them in the sixth place and they are now four points ahead of Manchester United and one behind Everton. Question marks were again raised on Soldado, who failed to impress and create any sort of attacking dominance for his side. Sherwood had made two changes after Wednesday’s 5-1 thrashing by Manchester City as Jan Vertonghen and Paulinho came into the starting line-up.
Manager Steve Bruce thought that the result was a fair one and spoke later:
“I thought a draw was a fair result. There was an element of luck with their goal with Danny Rose smashing a shot, but to be fair to Paulinho he finished it well. We had arguably the better chances but we have got off 23 points and we were on that for a long time”.
The manager was also mightily impressed with new winter signings and his strike partnership:
“Shane Long is a player we have not had before because of his pace, which gets him away from defenders. His goal summed it up, he got the flick on and burst through.
“He will give us what we have lacking before. I was also delighted for Nikica Jelavic, he could have scored and could have scored against Crystal Palace and he has only been with us 10 days.”
Tottenham boss Tim Sherwood acknowledged Hull’s resilient display but felt that his team deserved a victory at the KC Stadium:
“We thought we should have won the game.
“There was a period in the second half where we had Hull where we wanted them and we could have taken maximum points, but we didn’t take our chances and unfortunately we are only coming away with a point.
“But you have to give Hull credit. They dug in, they are fighting for their lives at the bottom of the league, and everyone has their needs.”
Sherwood spoke about Shane Long’s early goal in the match and clarified that he did not panic because of it:
“It was bitterly disappointing but I wasn’t panicking at that stage. I thought it would be tight and we could work it out in the end, and I thought we played well today.
“You need to create chances and I thought we created a lot more in the second half. We caught them a few times and stretched them, but we never took our chances and we are only coming away with a point
“But the pleasing thing is that, if we weren’t going to win, we definitely weren’t going to lose.”
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— TheHardTackle (@TheHardTackle) February 1, 2014