Who are you? We’re Hull, Act 1 scene 2

Gary Clark continues his entertaining look at Hull’s Premier season ahead of our vital clash this weekend…

The Premier League experience has been beyond my wildest dreams and at times and like a kick in the bollocks cruel at others.

To watch my team play on an equal footing at places like Old Trafford, Anfield, The Emirates and Stamford Bridge has been a dream come true.

It’s what keeps football at grass roots level going and I do seriously believe Hull City FC have been the football story of the decade, a modern day Wimbledon.

I do not like sharing the experience with some of our brand new supporters, the ones who have as much right to an away ticket to the places mentioned above as me, I love sharing it with the faces I travelled to mid week games at Southend and Cardiff with when the only hassle we had was getting enough bodies together to fill a mini bus, sometimes a car!

Now every glamour game is a lottery for tickets although obtaining them has got a lot easier as we slip on the table.

I spoke to a young lad at Middlesbro’ last week who had seen 200 consecutive City games home and away, which started at the bottom of the old Fourth Division and he was unsuccessful in applying for tickets for the Manchester United away game.

My own brother, who up to this season couldn’t talk to me about my local team without laughing, he “supports” Liverpool, was isssued two tickets for Anfield, I was turned down. He had never seen City play away before in his life, he hasnt been away since, it was the first time he had seen Liverpool in the flesh (hes in his 40s, not six) and he and his Manchester United supporting mate occupied two of our seats at Anfield.

That has been the worst thing about the Premeir League. My club needs to sort out the away ticket allocation for next season because it has been a nightmare obtaining tickets for some games this season. Hull suddenly have 21,500 season tickets holders, mine is number 610, thats how many we had when I first could afford to buy a pass, yet passholder number 21,499 has as much right to an away ticket as I do. Do you think it a fair way of allocating tickets for away fixtures we could only dream about even a couple of years ago?

Before our game in December Phil Brown was linked with your vacant manager’s position because he was born in South Shields.

Which is the only qualification you need according to some newspapers. Look at Newcastle (tee hee) if you played for them your bound to be a great manager. At the time I thought it was the usual lack of respect shown to my club by some sections of the media.

“He’s too good for Hull” etc etc. We’ve had it for years down here, our local newspaper were the worst offenders, mind you the City reporter is a Sunderland fan, they were saying the same about Peter Taylor the first time he strung a few results together.

They had him linked to every vacant manger’s job down South, even though we were top of the league, they thought the likes of Charlton and Crystal Palace were a better career move and almost campaigned for him to leave!

Which in itself gives all the ammunition to our knockers the first time we hit a bad spell it’s “He should have ****** off to where ever!”

Hull is a funny place as the Chelsea match programme reminded us when they dragged up a newspaper article from 1966 “the forgotten city at then end of a 60 mile railway siding”

We have no close rivals. I’m banned from the Scunthorpe rivals site if that counts? No
one see’s us as rivals. Perhaps Scunthorpe do which is bit humiliating. We dont like Leeds, they don’t consider us, that comes from the number of locals who jumped on the “Champions of Europe” bandwagon when our own club were on its knees which was for most of the 80s and 90s.

Our biggest rivals share our ground with us. Hull FC which stands for “Football Club”.

When in fact they are actually a rugby league club, that’s the game you play at school when you are not good enough to get into the football team around here. I would sooner have another football club in the city to compete with because it would be at least a fair competition.

Rugby League is concentrated along the M62, go ten miles either side of it and nobody knows what you are talking about. They have no relegation for example and only 14 clubs in the league, and two of those are from Hull. We are in a cut throat competition with clubs that make our annual turnover look like a corner shop in comparison to Tesco’s worldwide, as you are well aware yourselves, they are competing with Celtic Crusaders?

Try and find it on the map. They get to Wembley by playing maybe three teams from thier own league, usually small West Yorkshire market towns and a couple of pub teams.

Yet that is comparable to anything in football, or “soccer” as they call it. I call it diluted glory, if you like attaching yourself to a trophy winning sport then try rugby league, or the best dart team in your area, go and “support” them because they are on par with each other. We have to compete with them for everything from media coverage down to sponsorship.

And if we get a second longer on the local radio the rugby league fans are ringing up complaining “What about us”? Also football is always portrayed locally as a game infested with hooligans, cheats, nancy boys and is money mad. Where as rugby league is whiter than white, a family sport and everybody takes thier dear old gran to games. Absolute bollocks.

1 thought on “Who are you? We’re Hull, Act 1 scene 2”

  1. What a refreshing post to read Gary. A breath of fresh air. I recognise so many aspects of what you say there about the “new breed” of supporters. When we moved to the SOL from the grand old lady of Roker Park, we were subject to a massive influx of this “new breed” too. They wouldn’t have been able to find Roker Park with a GPS, let alone recognise players (or even know who they were) from a few seasons previously. The attraction of football based on where you were watching it eluded me then and it’s eluded me since. Probably the same as you I cared little about who we were playing, or which division we were in.

    Good luck to Hull for the rest of this season. The PL has been a long time coming!

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