As good as the KC stadium is many, including myself, believe that it will need to be expanded. Currently, the stadium holds 25,000 which is fine for the Championship. They laid plans for a further 5,000 seats to be added to the East Stand and that plan should be executed as soon as it possible. Not the next season though as that should be viewed as a consolidation season where the view is to simply stay in the premier league. However, after next season and assuming they stay in that league then during the close season they should do the upgrade.
The game itself, the Championship play-off final, had some excellent moments with some delightful football from both sides. Bristol City were the more lively side for the opening 10 minutes but for the remainder of the first half it was Hull City who dominated. A wonderful textbook volley from Windass on 37 minutes was all that separated the sides at half time. Hull City played the better football in the first half with some lovely passing that would grace any premier league side. The second half saw Hull City laying back content with their one goal lead which gave Bristol City more chances. Hull City always looked dangerous going forward however. The second half never lived up to the excellence of the firs half but Hull City hung on to their slender lead until the final whistle. Bristol City throughout the game never really looked dangerous. It was not to be their day as time after time their attacks either came to nothing or where snuffed out by a stout Hull City defense. Of the two teams on display Hull City looked the better side. The solitary goal by Windass was excellence personified. It would not have been out of place in any top premier league game. The lead up to the goal came from a counter attack. Campbell ran into the penalty area out wide. Stopped, looked up, saw Windass and placed the perfect pass right onto Windass's foot. Windass then first time volleyed it and the ball went screaming into the Bristol City goal. It was a fine effort and the 1 goal lead reflected the state of the game at the time during the match. Hull City where the better team on the day and fully deserve their chance to play in the premier league.
Will they survive in the premier league? Yes, I think they will. They will finish in the bottom half of the table but for a first effort that is all that can be asked of them. Do they need new players? Undoubtedly. Their is enough self belief in their own abilities as players and as a team to allow them to play some lovely football that is right up their with some of the best teams this country offers. But, in some areas they need new players. Windass and Barmby are not spring chicks anymore and they will struggle with the pace of the premier league. Perhaps the managers method of starting those two then later on in the game replacing them Folan and Fagan, respectively, will allow the two elder players one season of premiership football, but with an eye to the future those two should be replaced because of their age alone.
So, the city of Kingston upon Hull will have 3 teams playing in their respective top leagues next season and if all 3 teams can make an impact in their sports next year, it can only be a good thing for the city as a whole.
Well done Hull City.