BRUCE CLUED UP ON NEW BOY SAM Clu­cas is off the mark for Tigers

The Football League Paper - - CHAMPIONSHIP - By Roddy Brooks

HULL man­ager Steve Bruce praised debu­tant Sam Clu­cas af­ter the sum­mer sign­ing marked his first game with the open­ing goal in the win over Hud­der­s­field.

Hull debu­tants Clu­cas and Chuba Akpom shared the goals as the home side started their re­turn to the Cham­pi­onship in fine style.

The Tigers had been rel­e­gated from the Premier League on the fi­nal day of last sea­son but got their at­tempt to get back into the top flight off to the per­fect start in front of 19,361 fans at the KC Sta­dium.

Bruce said of for­mer Here­ford and Ch­ester­field winger Clu­cas: “It’s a great story. He went to Glenn Hod­dle’s academy. There are some great suc­cess sto­ries in things like that.

“He will re­mem­ber his de­but. It just goes to show if you have got the at­ti­tude never give up.”

Bruce ad­mit­ted the game was de­cided by the goals com­ing at the right time for his side, the sec­ond af­ter Hud­der­s­field had fought their way back into pro­ceed­ings.

He added:“I think to be fair we got the goals just at the right times. It was go­ing to be dif­fi­cult to break them down.The sec­ond one came at just the right time. We will get bet­ter, I am con­vinced we will get bet­ter.”

Bruce has made sev­eral sign­ings over the sum­mer and ex­pects to make more be­fore the trans­fer win­dow closes.

He con­tin­ued:“We will still do a bit more in the win­dow but it has been dif­fi­cult. There are still three weeks to go which is wor­ry­ing.”

He also re­vealed that the owner, As­sem Al­lam, and his fam­ily had de­cided to miss the game be­cause of per­sonal at­tacks by fans un­happy at his at­tempts to change the club’s name.

Bruce said:“To­wards the end of the sea­son there were some mind­less id­iots throw­ing stones at their house. It hap­pened more than once over the sum­mer.”

Hud­der­s­field man­ager Chris Pow­ell ad­mit­ted he ex­pected a tough game for his side against one of the favourites for pro­mo­tion.

“My play­ers re­ally played well at a place where not many teams will take points,” he said.

“We were play­ing a team who have as­pi­ra­tions for the top two, let alone the top six.

“It was cru­cial mo­ments to­day (when the goals came). The re­sponse in the sec­ond half was pos­i­tive.”

The Hud­der­s­field boss opted for a de­fen­sive for­ma­tion be­cause of in­juries to key play­ers in the week be­fore the opener.

“We had to change. We lost Sean Scan­nell on Fri­day morn­ing. He is a bright player for us and some­one we can use on the counter-at­tack. Joe Lol­ley was miss­ing as well.”

Hull started the game well but it took time for the home side to make their dom­i­nance pay.

Clu­cas broke the dead­lock as the first half drew to a close when he came in un­marked at the far post to meet Ahmed El­mo­hamady’s cross.

Clu­cas’ first ef­fort was saved by Alex Smithies but the winger fired the re­bound high into the roof of the net.

Akpom put the re­sult be­yond doubt with 20 min­utes re­main­ing when he worked some space for him­self on the right side of the area and, like Clu­cas, fired into the roof of the goal.

Clu­cas was de­nied a sec­ond by Smithies in sec­ond-half stop­page time as Hull looked for a third to seal it.

Hud­der­s­field’s best chance came in the sec­ond half but Allan McGre­gor got down well to keep out a shot from Ja­cob But­ter­field as Hull com­fort­ably claimed all three points.

PIC­TURES: Ac­tion Im­ages

ROAR­ING START: Sam Clu­cas cel­e­brates with his Tigers team mates

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