In recent years, Hull City have certainly had their fair share of exciting seasons, toying with promotion to the Premier League a number of times. However, in the run up to the opening day of the 2018/19 season, even a passing comment regarding a potential Tigers’ promotion would’ve been laughed at.
I think it’s safe to say that at the start of the season, City weren’t exactly the bookies’ favourites to return to the Premier League, through automatic or playoff promotion. In fact, the Tigers were backed by many football fans to be relegated, after only just maintaining their Championship status at the back end of last season.
With Adkins’ men sitting rock bottom of the table in October, it seemed it was going to be another long campaign for the Tigers’ faithful, yet in the last few months something has begun to change on the pitch.
After enduring an outstanding unbeaten streak over the festive period, City found themselves sitting in mid-table, after successfully climbing out of the relegation zone in stylish fashion, beating local rivals Leeds United along the way.
Currently, with eleven league games remaining, Hull City are four points away from the playoffs. Tigers’ fans have certainly found themselves showing a surprising amount of optimism with regards to this City team, as the end of the season looms.
Hull city fan Aiden Beswick (@ABeswickSport) provided his opinions on a promotion push for the Tigers, saying: “Our form towards the back end of November really got me believing that ‘with a few more wins, we could be in with a chance of the play-offs’.
“It was vital we kept hold of Bowen and Grosicki in January, otherwise I don’t think we’d even be in the top half.
“The defence has been a key factor to results too – Burke & De Wijs look like a comfortable partnership and if kept fit could steer us up the table.
“I feel a play-off spot is possible if we keep these four players fit and we play the way that we know we can.”
Of course, Tigers’ fans have never fallen short with their praise directed towards City boss Nigel Adkins, and many fans believe that the gaffer is the key to footballing success in Hull.
Hull City supporter Cammy Tulloch (@cammytulloch1) agreed with this, stating: “Nigel and his players have done incredibly well under the circumstances around the club, to give us fans the thought of promotion.
“Personally, I’d love to scrape the play offs and I do think that there is a slim chance if our key players stay fit.”
Although there is still a huge sense of uncertainty surrounding the club with regards to ownership, it seems that the Tigers’ performances on the pitch couldn’t further contrast the issues going on behind the scenes.
Daniel Francis (@LVDaniel13) gave his opinion on the current situation from a fan’s perspective, explaining: “With the current run city are on, the playoffs are definitely still a possibility, although I think it might be a little bit of an ask for us this season.
“Hopefully if we start pushing closer, fans can put the ownership issues aside for a couple of months and really get behind the team.
“We all know that city love the playoffs, so anything is possible!”
This inspiring sense of optimism seems to be a common factor amongst the vast majority of Tigers’ fans, which is baffling considering where the club was in October.
Another Tigers’ fan, Ryan Gilbey (@gilbeyrm) gave his views on the Tigers’ form, saying: “Results away from the KCOM will be crucial if we are to make the playoffs. We look solid at home and I can see us winning the majority of the remaining games there.
“Fair play to Adkins, he’s found a balance that suits us, and I think our starting eleven is as good as anyone’s in the league.
“I fancy us to sneak into the top six, which would be remarkable considering where we were back in December.
“We certainly have the attacking options to turn it on if we do make it to the play offs… so as always, dare to dream!”
Whether Hull City manage to sneak into a promotion spot or not, I think every Tigers’ fan would agree that it’s been a remarkable season. With this club, you just never know what’s going to happen, so daring to dream really does become a force of habit.
[Alex Thurston – @althurstonsport]
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