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Football: City still searching for first win
Hull City 0-1 Blackburn Rovers (Saturday August 18)
Bradley Dack scored the only goal of the game just before half time as Rovers’ unbeaten start to the new season continued. For the Tigers, the wait for a first league win continues.
Nigel Adkins made two changes to the side that started the Tigers’ last league game against Sheffield Wednesday as both Reece Burke and Dan Batty missed out. Angus MacDonald and Jackson Irvine were their replacements with defender Adam Curry included amongst the substitutes after his impressive senior debut in the midweek Carabao Cup win against Sheffield United.
There was an early set-piece opportunity for the Tigers when Evandro was brought down around 30 yards from goal. A ball was floated into the box and when Jordy de Wijs couldn’t quite guide it goalwards, MacDonald did with a decent volley but Rovers’ goalkeeper David Raya was equal to it.
Dack headed onto the roof of the net at the end of a quick Blackburn attack sparked by a generous free kick before David Marshall needed to be off his line quickly to deny Adam Armstrong.
The same player was denied again by Marshall in the tenth minute with the keeper getting down to keep out a low shot, while Jarrod Bowen saw an effort blocked at the other end of the field. Marshall had to be on top form again with 13 minutes played to stop Dack giving his side the lead after wriggling through a number of challengers inside the box, the final chance for a while as the game began to settle down.
A nasty clash of heads between Stephen Kingsley and Kasey Palmer led to a lengthy stoppage and saw Kingsley come off worst. Thankfully neither player needed the stretcher, but Kingsley’s afternoon was over and he was replaced by Jon Toral. Eric Lichaj switched to left back, with Todd Kane filling in at right back.
Markus Henriksen sent a shot wide as play resumed but it was Blackburn who took the lead two minutes before half time. A low cross from the right by Elliott Bennett was perfect and Dack was there to guide the ball into the net from six yards.
Former Tiger Corry Evans was booked early in the second half for a challenge on Henriksen that left both players needing treatment, though both were fine to continue.
Evans was soon followed into the book by Darragh Lenihan when he took out Irvine in full flight, and Irvine would have the first real chance of the second half but a weak shot was saved by Raya, while a third Blackburn yellow saw Ryan Nyambe booked for a shove on Toral.
The theme of yellow cards continued as Evandro picked up the Tigers’ first of the afternoon for chopping down Evans before Blackburn somehow failed to make it 2-0. First Armstrong was denied by another great save from Marshall before Bennett placed the rebound wide of an open goal.
A double home change followed as Nouha Dicko and David Milinkovic replaced Fraizer Campbell and Bowen, with the Tigers then awarded a free kick for a foul on Toral just over 20 yards out. Evandro took the set-piece but a low shot was blocked by the wall.
Marshall was back in the action to push substitute Danny Graham’s header away with a little over ten minutes remaining before the Tigers almost drew level with a Jordy de Wijs header from Evandro’s corner but Raya reacted well to keep it out.
That proved to be the final chance, despite more than six minutes of added time, as Blackburn headed home with the points.
Hull City: David Marshall, Eric Lichaj, Angus MacDonald, Jordy de Wijs, Stephen Kingsley (Jon Toral 29), Markus Henriksen, Jackson Irvine, Jarrod Bowen (David Milinkovic 72), Evandro, Todd Kane, Fraizer Campbell (Nouha Dicko 72).
Subs Not Used: George Long, Kevin Stewart, Will Keane, Adam Curry.
(Report courtesy of www.hullcitytigers.com)