Missing Jelavic Will Hurt Hull But Shouldn’t Be Seen As Fatal


Hull City manager Steve Bruce has came out this afternoon and said that his striker Nikica Jelavic could miss the rest of the season due to a recurring knee injury.

Bruce stated…

“We hope he’ll do his best to try and play a part but if we’re going to be realistic, it could force him out for the rest of the season,”

That is a big blow for the ‘Tigers’. The Croatian international has bagged his club eight Premier League goals so far this term, that’s four more than any other Hull player this season.

His goals have directly contributed to his side gaining seventeen points in the league, not bad when you consider the club have only picked up twenty-eight points all season.

‘Jela’ is a good top league striker who is always a handful for opposing defences. He proved that at Rapid Vienna, Rangers and at Everton for twelve months before his Hull move in January 2014.

When the hard-working twenty-nine year old has missed chunks of the season so far, Hull have dropped down the table. Now they have just a three point cushion between themselves and Burnley, who are in the relegation zone.

So you can see why some ‘Tigers’ fans might be fearful for the remainder of the season and why the teams below Hull City might be rubbing their hands with glee.

But Hull have a few reasons to be a bit more optimistic about their fortunes despite the Croat’s absence.

Firstly Bruce noticed his team needed extra frontline personnel when Jelavic was out earlier in the campaign. So the boss brought in Name N’Doye, who has impressed since arriving from Lokomotiv Moscow. In fact, the Senegalese forward has hit the net three times in his four Hull starts.

Also let’s not forget that during Nikica’s first spell on the sidelines this term, he was joined there by Abel Hernandez. The Uruguayan was the clubs second main striker. Hernandez is now fit and should join N’Doye up-front. He might not be as prolific as the Croatian hitman but Hernandez can still grab valuable goals and offers a different type of threat.

The Yorkshire club also missed number one keeper Allan McGregor earlier on in the season but the Scot is now fully fit and he and his defence have kept three cleansheets in their last six fixtures.

Now Hull currently have twenty-eight points. I’d imagine Steve Bruce would want another eight in his sides last nine fixtures. The longer he can keep a cushion between himself and those below the better. If they can increase that gap then that would be marvellous from their point.

It’s the fixture list that could be the toughest part to this survival plan. In their remaining nine games they will face six of the top seven clubs in the league. These teams all have something major to play for, so anything against them could be huge.

Games against Crystal Palace and Swansea are winnable but you’d imagine that the Hull squad would have preferred to take them on at the KC stadium instead of being away.

The game against Burnley at home on the ninth of May could be a bit of a decider for both clubs. That match could go along way in deciding those two football clubs immediate futures.

Missing Nikica Jelavic is undoubtedly a big blow for Hull City AFC but it’s not the final nail in their coffin. They can still keep their heads above that relegation line if they pull together and fight for every point going.

It will be tough with their run-in but not impossible. It’s time for the rest of Hull’s squad to prove themselves!

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