Barmby emphasis on future as Hull say final farewell

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NINE years on from when Hull City moved out of Boothferry Park, fans will today have the chance to say one last goodbye before the demolition crews move in next week.

Nick Barmby is one of those who grew up on the terraces of the Tigers’ former home and he admits it will be a sad moment when the site is turned into housing in 2012.

However, as fond as his memories are of the days at Boothferry Park, Barmby insists the focus this weekend must be on looking forward as much as back as City prepare to take on Millwall at the KC Stadium.

Barmby, recently prompted to caretaker manager in his eighth season with home-town club Hull, commented: “We know it is going to be difficult as Millwall are a well-drilled team under Kenny Jackett.

“We have to be fully concentrated at all times. You need that in any league but especially the Championship. Millwall are a difficult team to break down but the emphasis is on us due to being at home.”

Today’s match will follow the final farewell to Boothferry Park with fans invited to attend at the old ground for half-an-hour from 11.15am.

Supporters wishing to attend are asked to enter via the old gates on North Road and Strata Homes, the company developing the site, has promised several former stars will be present.

A special group photograph will then be taken at 11.45am before one lucky fan, chosen at random by the club, will be nominated to be the last person to leave Boothferry Park at noon.

On City’s former home, Barmby said: “I have fond memories of Boothferry Park and it was the first ground I ever went to. I used to watch the games there and I remember the old North Stand before it was turned into a supermarket.

“I made my debut for Tottenham Hotspur at Boothferry Park in a testimonial game for Garreth Roberts. That was a great twist of fate.

“It really was a great place and the pitch was always like Wembley.

“The club had to move on and the KC Stadium gave us the foundation to get into the Premier League. But you should never forget where you’ve come from and Hull City fans certainly won’t.”

City are looking to claim a fourth consecutive victory and consolidate their place in the play-offs, last weekend’s 1-0 triumph at Coventry City having nudged the East Riding club up to fifth in the Championship.