Hull City 2 Liverpool 0
|TIGERS CLIP KLOPP’S WINGS WITH FINE DISPLAY|
Two nil to the Tigers. A packed house at the KCOM cheered the Tigers to a famous victory over Jurgen Klopp’s freefalling Liverpool side. One win in ten now for the Reds, but this was Hull City’s day. An unrecognisable City side, with new boy Ranocchia partnering Maguire at the back, and N’Diaye and Hernandez upfront. A home debut for Grosicki saw him put in a promising performance wide on the right. All City’s players enhanced their reputations in a fascinating first half. Liverpool were menacing on the flanks, but the heart of City’s defence was solid, despite the absence of Dawson.
Both sides created chances, with Milner threatening for Liverpool, and Huddlestone at his imperious best for the Tigers. Jakupovic made his by now customary string of fine saves as Liverpool bossed possession. A classic counter-attacking performance by the Tigers kept the Liverpool back line on its toes, and just as half time approached City went ahead. A blunder by the Liverpool keeper saw the ball drop kindly for N’Diaye who smashed the shot home. One nil at half time.
The second half saw Liverpool come more and more into the game, as a score of fifteen to one in corners might suggest. The Tigers defended tenaciously, aided once again by superb saves from Jakupovic. Every player defended heroically, blocking shot after shot, then, just when you thought Liverpool must score, a brilliant through ball from Ranocchia landed right at the feet of Oumar Niasse, who collected it, powered forward and slid the ball home. A final onslaught from Liverpool left the Tigers two nil winners, and worthily so.
Mario Silva must be delighted with successive clean sheets against Liverpool and Manchester United, but it was his tactical awareness that was key. This was no fluke. City were exceptional, and on this form, thoughts of relegation will soon be a distant memory. The great escape is very much on. Now for Arsenal, and another upset? Why ever not? Brilliant.
By David Osgerby