JUST as Mohamed Diame and Abel Hernandez managed back in September, Dame N’Doye marked his full debut for Hull City on Tuesday night with a goal and a host of plaudits.
The 29-year-old, signed from Lokomotiv Moscow in a £3m deal on deadline day, sealed a 2-0 win with a predatory strike late in the second half.
N’Doye had also helped create the opener for Nikica Jelavic with a fantastic piece of control and vision that set the Croat through on goal.
No wonder, therefore, that the KC Stadium was quickly won over by the new boy, just as Diame and Hernandez had done when scoring on their own Tigers bows in a 2-2 draw with West Ham United.
One man not surprised by the immediate impact made by N’Doye, who turns 30 later this month, was Ahmed Elmohamady.
The Egyptian had twice faced the Senegal striker last year in qualifying for the African Nations Cup and he admits to having been impressed.
“I knew what he would bring to the team,” said Elmohamady.
“I had played against him in international football so knew he was a fantastic player.
“We played Senegal twice and we lost both games.
“I thought N’Doye was great in the games.
“I was pleased when I heard Hull were signing him.
“I didn’t know him personally but I knew of him. So, I told the lads he would be what we need. He has experience. He can hold the ball and score goals, which is exactly what we need. He only had two training sessions before Tuesday night so you can see what he can do. He now has 10 days to get to know everyone.
“Him and Jela were world class against Villa. They always score on their debuts, it is great. We hope he can keep scoring.”
N’Doye left the field to a deserved standing ovation when substituted against Villa shortly before the end.
His new team-mates were afforded the same treatment at the final whistle, after a dogged performance had been enough to see off a woeful visiting team.
Coming on the back of last Saturday’s 1-1 draw at champions Manchester City, Hull’s third home win of the season was a major boost to the club’s attempts to stave off the threat of relegation.
Elmohamady said: “After Manchester City, we had to back it up and get a good result. A draw against a top team like City wasn’t bad but now we have the win we needed.
“The lads were class again and gave everything. It was a great three points, mainly because we are out of the bottom three.
“We can look forward to facing QPR (on February 21) in what will be a huge game for us. The atmosphere will be fantastic.”
The four points taken off City and Villa have helped banish the memory of a truly wretched second half in the 3-0 home defeat to Newcastle United on January 31.
“The gaffer had a few words with us (after Newcastle) and said it was important we all stick together,” said Elmohamady. “We have done well in the last two games and fingers crossed this can continue.
“We were very solid all the way through against Villa. It gives us confidence. We now need to continue that. I just wish we had a game on Saturday.
“I know it will be good for the players coming back from injury, but I wish we could play again straight away.”
Among those expected to return against QPR is Diame, who last played for City in October.