Tag: Hull City

There Are No Prizes: The 200% End Of 2013 Awards

It’s the time of year when handing out awards for things that have happened to people and organisations over the previous twelve months or so comes into vogue, and even though the football season somewhat inconveniently doesn’t pay too much attention to the machinations of the Gregorian calendar, we’re going to give it a go anyway. (For those of you that are interested in such things, my review of 2013 can be found here – it was written a couple of weeks ago, but I don’t think that an enormous amount has changed since then, apart from Manchester United starting to win matches) But anyway, I’m usually pretty uncomfortable in a tuxedo and tie, all the more so when I’m dressed like this in a room on my own with my cat staring at me as if I’m on the precipice of a nervous breakdown, so… on with the show! Team Of The Year: Leyton Orient – To build a winning team is one thing. To build a winning team on a shoestring budget is another. To transform a team that looked likely to struggle against relegation into challengers for promotion is a mighty achievement indeed. At the end of October last year, Leyton Orient FC was in twentieth place in League One, just one spot above the relegation places in that division, but just six defeats in the...

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On Coventry City, Cardiff City & Hull City’s Winter Of Discontent

There are three football clubs at which the Christmas period may well prove to be a period of reflection. The circumstances that have engulfed these three clubs over the last few weeks and months have come to act as something of a barometer for the state of professional football in this country at the moment. None of them are sufficiently insignificant as clubs to be easy to sweep under the carpet – two of them, for goodness’ sake, are in the Premier League – and the behaviour of their owners have heaped shame on what used to be a game, as well as causing thousands to start reconsidering whether this “game” is even worth bothering with any more. It used to occasionally be said that, over the course of your lifetime, you were statistically less likely to change your bank than you were to change your husband and wife. I’m not entirely sure whether this situation is still the same but I’d say with a degree of certainty that, even in the footloose and fancy-free twenty-century, when we’re all encouraged to treat every interaction in our personal lives as consumers, that we’re still less likely to change our football team over the course of our lifetimes than just about any other aspect of our lives. It’s only through this prism of attachment and self-identification can the decisions of those...

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Hull City’s Assem Allam Is A Symptom Of A Broader Problem

There’s an attempt at a coup d’etat going on in football in this country at the moment, and it feels as if point is rapidly approaching at which supporters of all hues will draw a line in the sand and say “enough.” Indeed, that point may already have been reached this week with the confirmation that, having originally promised that there would be a period of consultation with supporters and then apparently going back on this by stating that protestors “can die as soon as they want”, Dr Assem Allam’s Hull City has submitted a formal proposal to the Football Association to change the club’s name to “Hull Tigers” from the start of next season. Allam’s overwhelming desire to desecrate Hull City AFC has publicly been reported as being related to a belief that the use of the name “City” is “common” – he might have preferred to use the word “commonplace” there lest his words be left open to misinterpretation, but that’s by the by – but it has also been reported that this move may be due to something a little more prosaic, that being the local city council’s refusal to sell him The KC Stadium and land surrounding it. To be clear, the KC Stadium is a community asset in the most obvious of respects. The local council paid more than £42m towards the cost of...

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Dr Assem Allam Writes His Own Legacy At Hull City

Dr Assem Allam is not a young man. At seventy-four years old, we might have expected him to start taking things a little easier at his time of life, to spend a little more time with the Daily Telegraph’s cryptic crossword, tending to his garden and feeding the birds in the park, but one of the more unfortunate traits of the sort of capitalist baron of which Allam is a prime example is that the pursuit of money, status and respect never seems to have a retirement age, and in the case of Allam this seems to be married to an unshakeable desire to get his own way and say exactly what he’s thinking at any given time. Allam now seems to consider himself to be only true voice of Hull City AFC, but his absolute and utter contempt for anybody that intends to stand in his way with regard to the rebranding of the club that he purchased in December 2010 has plumbed new depths this morning with an interview in the Independent on Sunday in which he described supporters protesting against his plan to change the name to Hull Tigers as “hooligans”, warned that he will put the club up for sale if supporters do not accept what he apparently seems to be believe is his “authority”, and stated that supporters who are vociferously protesting against his...

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Hull City Supporters Make Their Voices Heard

Football clubs have always, in the main, been run as fiefdoms. From the late Victorian era and the likes of John Houlding at Liverpool through to his obvious descendents, such as Doug Ellis and Ken Bates, there has always been an element of ‘my way or the highway’ about club owners, but in the twenty-first century, when we demand greater transparency, in particular with regard to clubs being run for the benefit of their supporters, examples of true autocracy have a tendency to look all the more jarring. Indeed, perhaps the only thing more jarring than this is the sight of those who accept the edicts of those who are richers and betters – which seems destined to become this century’s equivalent of ‘elders and betters’ – without question. Over the last couple of seasons, this sort of absolute rule has made something of a return in professional football after a few years on the wane, most notably at Cardiff City, where an entire soap opera could be based upon a combination of what we know for sure and conjecture which doesn’t sound as ridiculous as it should do. There remains a protest at Cardiff City, of course, against the debasement of the club’s identity and about the increasingly freakish rumours concerning the actions those running the club, but the sheer white noise that comes with merely being in...

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