Hull City AFC travel to Norwich’s Carrow Road on Saturday looking to build on their impressive 6-1 win over Birmingham – seems ages ago now right?
After failing to win their previous five games that result, and it goes without saying, was a real boost for Leonid Slutsky and his side.
Perspective must be put into place though as they faced a poor Birmingham outfit that came more likely to kicking their other foot, than defending their own goal, but to their credit City put them to the sword and it was very pleasing to see six different players on the scoresheet – including Marcus Henriksen.
At the risk of sounding too pessimistic it was an enjoyable afternoon and providing Alan McGregor and Sluts don’t come into direct communication, plenty more of those will hopefully follow.
At the KCOM, a venue where scoring goals doesn’t seem to be a problem, it was a fantastic home win but City’s fortunes on the road have been far from fantastic this season or last – and that’s putting it nicely.
They haven’t won an away league fixture since August 2016 and that has to change soon before the next step of Freddo inflation. Let’s not forget before the romp over the Brummies we were hovering dangerously close to the relegation zone – and we need a good run of form between now and Christmas to eradicate those nightmares of League One football. *shudders*
Our opponents Norwich are in good form having won four of their last five games in all competitions. Their most impressive results have come away from home though and they have been held 0-0 in their last two games at Carrow Road so that should give City confidence.
Gettting the right system to flourish has been the tricky part for our Russian manager – who seems content to have played a bit of roulette this season. Slutsky though has had two weeks to work with most of his squad ahead of this game and some of his troops coming back from international duty will be full of confidence.
David Meyler was instrumental in the Republic of Ireland’s win over Wales to secure a World Cup play-off spot (shoutout to Adrian Durham and his song) while Kamil Grosicki was on fire for Poland as they secured their place in the World Cup.
The flying winger scored in both of their wins and Slutsky will be hoping he can bring his international form with him to Carrow Road. When he is on song he is one of the best in the Championship and if he plays to his potential City may have a chance to halt their terrible run of away form – especially with Jarrod Bowen banging them in left, right and centre. Go on lad.
Leonid Slutsky is wary of the threats Norwich will pose and their defensive strength but feels his side will be confident of finding a way to win.
“Like always in the Championship it will be unpredictable but I hope that we can keep our level of confidence and quality from our last match,” he said.
“Norwich are a very good team, though, especially at home and I think it will be a very close game”.
Norwich are missing several key attacking players and their manager Daniel Farke alluded to that in his press conference.
“Personnel problems especially in our offensive area are not ideal but it’s quite normal,” he said.
“It will be important that we go on with our good defensive behaviour in order not to concede too many goals. When you have to do without so many offensive players, it’s not as easy to create so many chances.
“We have to do without them and we have to find some solutions. I’m confident in my guys that we are able to create chances to score goals.”
Stephen Kinglsey had groin surgery this week and will miss at least the next four weeks for City. Max Clark is expected to step in at left back.
Kingsley joins long term absentees Abel Hernandez and Ryan Mason on the sidelines. Fraizer Campbell is also doubtful after sustaining a minor knee injury against Birmingham.
Norwich will be without suspended forward Marley Watkins who was sent off in their win over Reading before the international break. He joins several Norwich players on the sidelines including club captain Russell Martin, Steven Naismith, Alex Pritchard, Matt Jarvis, Jamal Lewis, and Louis Thompson.
On a positive note for the Canaries midfielders Mario Vrancic and Marco Stiepermann could return.
FanaticHull Prediction: Confident – all bad runs have to end sometime right?
Norwich 0 City 1.