Hull City 1-1 Preston North End

Match pictures - here

The first half against Hull City is best forgotten from out point of view. We were prepared right, we had got there early but when kick off time arrived it just didn't happen for us. Hull's five minute group hug before the game had given us a clue to what this game meant to them and it showed. They were quicker to the ball, their two centre backs were strong, their full backs pushed on but it was their two midfield players who were doing the most damage. They were picking the ball up deep from their center backs and hitting long diagonal ball between our centre half’s and our full backs causing us all sorts of problems.

It meant we were constantly on the back foot and when we did get it the ball we were usually too deep to support our front lads. In games like this you have to hope your back four stay strong and try to stop your opponents getting into areas that can really hurt you. I thought the lads at the back did that and kept Hulls real chances down to a minimum. Saying that I thought their goal when it did arrive was a poor one from our point of view (but as Manager I would say that lol). I thought we could have been stronger in stopping the guys run and from his angle it should not have meant us conceding but it's a lead Hull did deserve and took us in to half time 1-0 down but at the same time thankful it wasn't more.

Half-time we had a chat and we all new we would have to improve. Every player was asked to look at his own performance and to be honest with himself. As manger I also felt we had to try and make things happen instead of waiting for them to happen. I also felt our midfield had to wrestle the initiative of Hull by being more aggressive and letting them know that they were in a game.

Second half started much the same with Hull still having time on the ball and as a consequence they were still hurting us but as the game wore on, we at last, began to make our presence felt. Johnny PNE and Andy Dodwell were begging to get at them down the flanks, Chris Chambers our centre forward was coming off their back two and picking the ball up deep and going at them drawing them out of position giving more room for our wide men to step inside their full backs and our midfield lads were at last getting hold of the ball.

Hulls number 11 who had run the show in the first half was now being closed down a lot more meaning he had to go deeper into his own half to try and find the space he was getting in the first half and this meant he was not causing us as many problems. Preston continue to ask more and more questions of the Hull team and the introduction of the Preston sub Peter Heaps gave Chambers the support he was looking for as it added more weight to the Preston attack (LOL) as Preston continued to ask more and more questions of the Hull team.

When the equalizer did come I don't think anybody can argue that it was not deserved. The all team had worked their socks off in the second half and just when we thought it wouldn’t come we finally got a break! Great work by Peter Heaps and Chris Chambers found us inside Hull's penalty area and as the ball broke to a Preston player and he didn't hesitate has he smashed the ball into the back of the Hull net.

It was no more than Preston deserved and it was Preston now who had their tails up as they went in search of the winner. Atky coming on to replace Stuart Bolton nearly gave Preston a famous victory. Superb work by Andy Dodwell on the left flank saw him cut the ball back to the onrushing Atky but his snap shot was beaten out by the desperate Hull City defence. They game continued to ebb and flow but Hull were not out of it and only a match saving tackle by Preston left Back Howard Chats stop Hull City’s number 11 bursting through in the final minutes.

The final whistle finally went and there was strong handshakes and mutual respect from both sets of players as they left the pitch. Both sides now get ready to lock horns once again in next weeks 3rd round cup tie. I would like to thank all MY SQUAD for the efforts on and off the pitch yesterday none more so than Matty Higgins who really geed us up for that second half. We had to work hard for that draw but it was great effort by everybody and that includes the lads on the sidelines


Chris Hall

Chats - Alex H - Martin - Howard

Jonny - John - Steve - Andy

Chambers - Stu

Subs: Jimmy, Pesch, Atky, Pete, Des






Red = man of the match

= goal





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