Koren keen for Tigers to maintain momentum away from top flight

Robert Koren
Robert Koren
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ROBERT KOREN insists Hull City want to progress in the FA Cup as manager Steve Bruce prepares to rotate a squad that tomorrow will tackle its fifth game in 15 days.

The Tigers, 10th in the Premier League with a 23-point haul from 20 outings, travel to Middlesbrough in the third round.

A year ago, Bruce’s reaction to an equally busy festive season was to start just two of the previous game’s starting XI when his side took on Leyton Orient.

It was a similar story in August when the Tigers again travelled to Brisbane Road for a Cup tie with the starting XI that night including none of the team that had beaten Norwich City a few days previously, or, as it transpired, the team that started against Manchester City the following weekend.

Despite Bruce being likely to employ a similar approach tomorrow at the Riverside, Koren said: “We have two days to recover and then we play in the Cup.

“That is tough. But we want to keep going and get through to the next stage.

“It is important for us to do well in every competition. We will all be wanting to do well against Middlesbrough.

“This time of a season is not easy. The games are so thick together. All we can do is try to do the right things and stick together, to make sure we are ready when the next match comes around.”

Koren netted his first Premier League goals for Hull over the festive season, his double helping Bruce’s men claim the club’s best win in almost two decades as Fulham crashed 6-0.

The Slovenian said: “It is great to have 23 points. But this is the Premier League and we need to focus on getting more.

“If you go two or three games without getting a result, then you can find yourself in a difficult position. No one wants that.

“We need to focus on our next game in the league when it comes round and get some points.”

Hull lost 2-0 to Liverpool on New Year’s Day. Koren added: “We still believed we could go there and get some points.”

Tom Cairney has joined Blackburn Rovers on a permanent £500,000 deal. The midfielder has been on loan at Ewood Park and was the subject of an unsuccessful £350,000 offer from the Lancashire club last week.