Gedo forces his way into Bruce’s thinking

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IN the wake of Gedo’s Hull City debut at Brighton & Hove Albion, Steve Bruce made it clear that the chances of the Egyptian starting a game any time soon were slim.

It was not that the 26-year-old had done anything wrong during a 20-minute cameo in the 1-0 defeat to the Seagulls.

More an admission that both Gedo and fellow loanee arrival, Ahmed Fathi, had some distance to make up in terms of getting as match fit as the rest of the squad due to not having “played any competitive football for eight months apart from internationals, and they have been friendlies in the main”.

A week on, however, and much has changed for Gedo – on whom Hull have an exclusive option to buy should Egyptian club Al-Ahly wish to sell in the next 12 months – following his dream home debut on Tuesday night.

Not only did the Egyptian international score his first goal in English football within two minutes of leaving the bench but his all-round game ensured Hull came back to life after a below-par first half to claim a 2-1 victory.

Speaking ahead of today’s visit of Charlton Athletic to the KC Stadium, manager Bruce said: “Gedo made a big difference when he came on at the start of the second half and after a home debut like that it is now going to be very hard to leave him out (of the starting line-up).”

Gedo, therefore, seems set to start against the Addicks, though the identity of his partner up front remains a mystery with none of Nick Proschwitz, Robert Koren and Jay Simpson pushing their own case for inclusion against the Rams.

Proschwitz, for instance, missed an open goal in stoppage time after being picked out by Gedo’s cross, while the Koren-Simpson partnership did very little before both were withdrawn at the interval.

Another big decision for Bruce today is whether to stick with the 3-5-2 formation that has proved so successful for much of the season or revert to the 4-4-2 set-up that was effective in the second half against Derby.

The heavy nature of the KC pitch was behind the switch on Tuesday night with Hull’s swift passing style having become bogged down during the opening 45 minutes.

Bruce said: “I wasn’t making excuses when I mentioned the pitch to the press after the Derby game. I was just pointing out why we made the change.

“But it is right to say that the pitch was causing us problems. That is just how things are at this stage of the year. And not just at Hull, either. I mean all over the Football League.

“By making the change on Tuesday, we simplified things and I felt it really helped get us going. Equally, for 30-odd games, the way we have been playing has also worked so we might have to find a balance.”

Hull welcome Alex Bruce back from a dead leg, but Abdoulaye Faye is still out with a calf strain as Bruce’s men prepare to take on Charlton in what is the second of three consecutive games at the KC, Blackburn Rovers being due in the East Riding on Tuesday night.