Hull City 2-2 Ipswich Town - Match Report
Saturday, 18th Nov 2017 17:18
Jordan Spence netted an 88th minute equaliser as Town drew 2-2 at Hull City, their first draw for 25 matches. The Blues got off to the perfect start when David McGoldrick put them ahead in the sixth minute but the Tigers levelled through Jarrod Bowen on 34, then went in front via Nouha Dicko six minutes after the restart. McGoldrick missed a penalty in the 75th minute but Spence’s third goal of the season grabbed Town their first draw of the season with two minutes remaining.
Boss Mick McCarthy named an unchanged side with the Blues again lining-up in their attacking 4-2-3-1 system with McGoldrick, Martyn Waghorn and Bersant Celina behind Joe Garner.
Callum Connolly again joined Cole Skuse, who was over the injury he suffered in the 3-0 victory over Preston before the international break, in the deeper midfield roles.
There was no place in the 18 for Emyr Huws, who was in contention to return to the squad for the first time since joining the Blues on a permanent basis in the summer after recovering from his achilles injury.
Hull made four changes, Michael Hector, Kevin Stewart, Markus Henriksen and Dicko coming into the side for Max Clark, David Meyler, Jackson Irvine and Fraizer Campbell.
Town started brightly, Henricksen blocking Waghorn’s 30-yard freekick in the second minute.
And four minutes later, the Blues went in front. Hull keeper Allan McGregor impressively tipped Garner’s header over but Town scored from the resultant corner.
Waghorn played a quickly-taken short flag-kick to Celina, who returned the ball to the former Hull loanee, who crossed to the edge of the box. Skuse turned into the area and, after Jonas Knudsen had mis-kicked a loose ball, McGoldrick hit his eighth goal of the campaign into the corner of the net.
Having got their noses in front, the Blues continued to look the better side with the home team unable to make an impression on the game, much to the frustration of the home fans, already in a fractious mood due to their team’s 20th position in the table going into the game and their unpopular owners.
On 17 Garner tried an ambitious chip from not far inside the Hull half which McGregor was able to watch loop wide of his goal.
The Tigers struck their first shot of the game in the 22nd minute but Bowen’s 25-yard effort was straight at Bartosz Bialkowski in the Town goal.
As the game moved towards the half-hour mark Hull put the Blues under pressure for the first time with a number of balls played into the box but the Town backline remaining resolute.
However, in the 34th minute the Tigers levelled. Kamil Grosicki cleverly turned his way past Connolly as he broke into the area on the right, his cross hit Adam Webster, wrong-footing his team-mates and falling to Bowen at the far post and Bialkowski could only palm his shot and ninth goal of the season into the roof of the net.
The goal gave the home side increased impetus and on 40 Webster was forced to pull back Henriksen as he broke away towards goal after the Blues had lost possession and the former Pompey man was shown the first yellow card of the game.
Grosicki saw a strike blocked as the Tigers ended the half on top having grabbed their equaliser, deservedly on the balance of the first 45 minutes as a whole, Town having been the better side earlier in the period when they should have made more of having gained the lead.
Hull midfielder Seb Larsson was booked for a foul on Celina in the first minute of the second half.
Three minutes later, the Kosovo international unleashed a strike from the edge of the box but McGregor saved.
But in the 51st minute the home side went in front. Skipper Luke Chambers initially failed to deal with an aerial ball from deep, Dicko then held him off and ran through one-on-one with Bialkowski before beating the Blues’ keeper.
Town boss McCarthy will have been frustrated by the manner in which the goal was conceded, hardly the first poor goal shipped by his side this season.
Grosicki shot wide for the Tigers, now with their tails very much up, when he might have done better, then Bowen and Connolly had their names added to referee David Coote’s book for fouls.
Having made such a disappointing start to the half, the Blues started to come back into the game, Hector making an important interception ahead of Waghorn as Celina cut back.
At the other end, Dicko shot wide from 25 yards on the hour, then Garner was booked for the latest in a succession of indiscretions.
Moments later, the former Preston and Rangers man may have been a touch fortunate not to receive a second yellow card for clashing with Hector - who he had fouled to pick up his caution - having been felled by the on-loan Chelsea defender.
Knudsen joined the lengthening list of booked players for a foul on Bowen on 67, the Dane’s fifth caution of the season which will see him miss Wednesday’s game against Sheffield Wednesday. A minute later, Hull swapped Grosicki for Jackson Irvine.
Dicko almost profited from an under-hit Knudsen backpass as the game moved into its final 20 minutes but Bialkowski reached the ball and cleared ahead of the one-time Wolves man.
In the 74th minute Town were awarded their first penalty of the season after Waghorn had been clumsily tripped by Stewart as he cut into the area on the right.
Town’s earlier goalscorer McGoldrick took the kick but hit it too close to keeper McGregor, who saved to his right.
The Blues made a double substitution in the 80th minute, Grant Ward and Kevin Bru taking over from Waghorn and Connolly. Hull swapped Larsson for Meyler.
On 86 Freddie Sears replaced a frustrated McGoldrick with the Blues having started to put the Tigers under some late pressure.
And in the 88th minute they levelled. Webster nodded on Chambers's ball into the box after Ward had played a freekick short to him and Spence flung out a leg to divert home off the inside of the post.
Hull switched Dicko for Adama Diomande as the game moved into five minutes of added-on time. Soon after, Ward became the fifth Town player to pick up a yellow card for foul on Bowen, then Stewart joined him for a cynical foul as the Blues broke.
The Tigers should have won it at the death when Meyler found Diomande at the far post but the sub headed wide when he ought to have have scored.
Referee Coote brought the game to an end soon afterwards with the Blues claiming a point from what was an up and down afternoon.
Having started well and grabbing the lead, Town allowed a struggling Tigers side to get back into the game and then to go ahead.
The Blues had rarely looked like getting on terms before McGoldrick’s disappointing penalty. But Town showed their now familiar stoicism with Spence to man to pop up with the important late goal, not for the first time this season.
Overall, a point from a trip to a relegated former Premier League side is never a bad result, however, the Blues will feel that having gone ahead they might well have claimed all three. Equally, they looked destined for defeat for much of the second half.
The draw was Town's first for 25 matches (23 in the league) since the 1-1 with Birmingham on April 1st.
Going 15 league games at the start of a season without a draw is a new club record, beating the previous similar run of 14 established at the beginning of the 1954/55 campaign.
The result moved the Blues up a place to seventh before Derby's 1-1 draw at Fulham saw them return to eighth ahead of Wednesday’s live Sky game against the Owls at Portman Road.
Hull City: McGregor, Aina, Tomori, Dawson (c), Hector, Stewart, Larsson (Meyler 81), Henriksen, Bowen, Grosicki (Irvine 68), Dicko (Diomande 90). Unused: Marshall, Masuch, Clark, Evandro.
Town: Bialkowski, Spence, Webster, Chambers (c), Knudsen, Skuse, Connolly (Bru 80), Celina, McGoldrick (Sears 86), Waghorn (Ward 80), Garner. Unused: Gerken, Iorfa, Nydam, Kenlock. Referee: David Coote (Nottinghamshire). Att: 15,516 (Town: 985).
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