HULL CITY’S relegation troubles deepened on an afternoon when defeat to Tottenham Hotspur left the Yorkshire club need to end a ten game losing run against Manchester United on the final day to have any hopes of avoiding the drop.
Second half goals from Nacer Chadli and Danny Rose meant the Tigers left White Hart Lane empty-handed despite a much improved display on last weekend’s awful efforts against Burnley.
City had plenty of chances but were unable to capitalise to leave their fate dependant on how Steve Bruce’s men fare against United.
It won’t be easy against a side who have won their last ten meetings with Hull, whose last victory over the Red Devils came in 1974.
But, at least, Bruce’s men have a chance - which is down, in the main, to Newcastle United slumping to a 2-1 defeat against already relegated QPR despite taking a first half lead.
The Magpies host West Ham United on the final day knowing that a win for the Tigers would, thanks to a vastly inferior goal difference, mean they would more than likely have to win themselves - unless North East rivals Sunderland lose their last two games heavily.
Hull, knowing only a victory could guarantee the fight for survival would go to the final day, started in positive fashion.
Nikica Jelavic was unfortunate to see his shot cannon against the crossbar on 18 minutes after being found in space by Ahmed Elmohamady.
The Croat also went close with a spectacular overhead kick from another right wing delivery by the Egyptian, while at the other end the best chance of the first half fell to Erik Lamela.
However, after being picked out by Ryan Mason following a dart down the left wing, Lamela could only fire wide. Eric Dier also headed wide in the first half but there was little doubt as the two sides left the field at the interval that this was a game there for the taking by City.
That belief grew in the opening exchanges of the second half as, first, Paul McShane went close with a header and then a wonderful cross from Stephen Quinn just eluded Jelavic.
Then, though, came the opening goal as a sublime pass from Lamela released Nacer Chadli and he skipped around Steve Harper before rolling into the net.
Spurs doubled their advantage on the hour as more static defending allowed Danny Rose to chase a Ryan Mason through ball before firing past Harper.
City had a golden chance to get back into the game on 70 minutes but, after Abel Hernandez had two shots blocked by desperate defending, Dame N’Doye fired wide from close range.
Stephen Quinn then had a shot that went straight at Hugo Lloris but there was to be no way back for the Tigers.