Plymouth Argyle face Hull City this Saturdays, with the hosts currently holding a 100% record in League One this season. Ahead of the encounter, we spoke to Rich from @hullcitydata for our Opposition View.
First of all, how did you get into supporting Hull?
My dad took me to an early round FA Cup game against Lincoln in November 94. It was raining, cold and we lost. But I wanted to go straight back again. I’d caught the football bug during the 94 World Cup and been nattering to go and watch City ever since.
Are there any Hull players in particular we should be looking out for this weekend?
Keane Lewis-Potter is an absolute gem of a player and backs it up in front of goal! Can play across any position in our front line and cause problems for defences. The reborn George Honeyman in midfield has been wonderful to watch, goals and assists have been dripping from his pores so I expect some more on Saturday.
What went wrong last season to see the club relegated from the Championship?
It’s easy to say the loss of Jarrod Bowen and Kamil Grosicki but that was one huge hole to fill which wasn’t done correctly. We brought in Marcus Maddison who barely played any minutes and left without much fanfare. Whilst letting players leave (forcing their hands) before we restarted our fixtures didn’t help much either. It was a mess but that’s then and this team has a renewed vigour about it this season.
Your start to life in League One, meanwhile, has looked very strong. What have you made of it?
Really happy. Before the first game there was a bit of trepidation but we’ve looked really comfortable against teams like Gillingham and Northampton who play the ball into orbit and against Crewe who like to play with the ball on the floor. Our midfield has been strong and anyone who comes into the side has performed. We have options all over the pitch it all feels a bit alien to us after the last few years.
How have Hull been impacted by the COVID-19 situation?
Financially like most clubs we’ve no doubt made losses, but have been able to do some very good business in the market so are well set up for the season.
What sort of tactical style do you expect to set up with on Saturday?
As always, we’ll be lining up in a 433 formation. Our front 3 have been rotating during games which has made things interesting for defences. In midfield with Smallwood as our grafter it lets Docherty and Honeyman advance up the field which has given Honeyman a new lease of life as our number 10. Our front line is pretty stacked too so I can’t even say who’ll be playing, it’s an embarrassment of riches which for once is quite welcome.
And are there any real weak links in the side you’re worried about?
As of right now, there hasn’t been much worry, which is strange to say considering the cliff we fell off last season. The squad are all pulling in the right direction which is refreshing to see.
What first comes to mind when you think of Plymouth Argyle?
It’s gotta be a pasty – blame the Ginsters sponsorship, sorry.
Which Argyle player, if any, would you like to sign?
Nouble, no idea why but I’ve always liked watching him over the years i know he’s only a new lad at yours so hopefully performs. Niall Canavan at the back has been fairly solid for you too although we don’t need any more defenders.
What are your predictions for League One in general this year?
It’ll be a tight one this year, can’t see anyone running away with it. Ipswich have started well and you’d think after the failure last year they can’t afford to repeat that again. The new boys have had a mixed start but I think Crewe will last the distance and stay up, really enjoyed playing them the other week.
And finally, what is your prediction for the game itself?
Being at home I’d expect a win as we need to make it hard for team’s to play here. We still haven’t conceded in the league so I hope this continues come Saturday. I know you’ve drawn the last 2 games and will be looking for a win so I expect a hard game, you like to pass the ball around and attack down either flanks so it’ll be a good battle.
2-0 Hull City win.