Boyhood Bristol City supporter Herbie Kane can remember sitting in shock as Dean Windass’s rasping volley almost ripped the back of the net off in the 2008 Championship play-off final at Wembley.
The then nine-year-old fan was part of the 86,703-strong crowd who attended the fixture that is still fondly remembered by almost every football supporter from Hull.
The game finished 1-0 to the Tigers, much to the sorrow of Kane, as Bristol – his first academy club – saw their top-flight dream dashed.
But the heartbreak as a nine-year-old supporter is something barely remembered by the on-loan Liverpool midfielder nowadays as he looks to create more happy memories for Tigers fans this May.
The 21-year-old arrived at City just two days into the January transfer window and made his Hull debut in last weekend’s 3-2 FA Cup victory at Rotherham United. Hull are just two points behind sixth-placed Swansea City and host Fulham, one place and one point higher than the Swans, at the KCOM today.
The Tigers head into the game with three-straight wins to their name and Kane feels that victory for the home side could put the teams above them on alert.
From the staff and all the players that is definitely where we want to get to and I feel we can do it.Herbie Kane
“In the Championship, it is so tight and a couple of wins can get you right up there and into the play-offs,” he said.
“You have just got to keep that momentum going.
“Hopefully we will be able to get up there.
“A win would be a massive statement, Fulham are a great team and are doing well themselves. It can put a strong message out to the rest of the teams in the league and hopefully we can get the three points.
“I think the way that we are going we can reach the play-offs and get promoted.
“From the staff and all the players that is definitely where we want to get to and I feel we can do it.”
Kane admitted that he wanted a loan switch to Hull during the summer but it never materialised. His parent club, Liverpool, faced a more congested fixture list during the first half of the campaign as they were invited to participate in the FIFA Club World Cup in Qatar.
League Cup progress for the Merseyside club meant that they were required to play two games in two days – one in Birmingham, the other in Qatar in mid-December. But that provided an opportunity for Kane to make his first start for Liverpool as he featured in the club’s League Cup quarter-final defeat at Aston Villa.
The 21-year-old was under the tutelage of Hull manager Grant McCann previously when the pair worked together at Doncaster Rovers last season.
“I was looking to get out on loan as soon as possible and I was with the gaffer last year at Doncaster,” said Kane.
“He approached Liverpool and tried to get a loan and thankfully it happened for me.
“It isn’t the only reason. I have worked hard to make sure that I am ready for a loan spell. But, obviously, I was with him last year. I like his desire to win, that is similar to me. I love winning.
Kane added: “I wanted to go out in the summer and Hull was one of the places I wanted to go to.
“Things didn’t quite happen between the clubs.
“Especially with the amount of games that the first team at Liverpool had.
“They needed to keep hold of players, that is why it didn’t happen.
“It has been hard, I stayed all that time and only started one game. It is a bit frustrating but now I am at Hull and hopefully I can get some games.”
The midfielder feels that a move to the Championship is a natural progression for him, after playing 49 times for Rovers last campaign.
He added: “I am looking forward to it. I have watched a lot of games in the Championship and the standard is high.
“There are a lot of great players in the Championship and I am looking to challenge myself.”
Kane spoke to fellow Liverpool midfielder Harry Wilson prior to his loan switch, after Wilson spent the second half of the 2017-18 season on loan at the KCOM.
And Kane hopes to emulate Wilson’s development into a Premier League regular, adding: “You see with Harry, after the loan he had here, he is flying now.”