Huddersfield Giants v Hull FC: Hull not used to being ‘46-point underdogs’

Hull head coach Lee Radford (Picture: Bruce Rollinson)
Hull head coach Lee Radford (Picture: Bruce Rollinson)
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HULL FC head coach Lee Radford is not concerned by fan pressure mounting on him but does find it “interesting” how some of his squad are dealing with the club’s current poor spell.

Despite bringing the Airlie Birds back-to-back Challenge Cup final wins in the last two seasons, when also guiding them to the top-four both times, the 39-year-old has come under fire recently on the back of a five-game losing sequence.

There isn’t a great deal of pressure externally with some pundits giving us a 46-head start. It’s the first time in a while I’ve coached such a heavy underdog.

Lee Radford

All Hull’s hopes of silverware in 2018 have already gone ahead of tonight’s trip to Huddersfield Giants and Radford is aware of some negative reaction from a portion of the club’s support.

“Some fans are ‘get rid of that player and that coach’ and it’s the nature of the beast,” he said.

“Some fans understand the situation. What this period does is highlight a few things from individuals and how they react in this situation. That’s something I’ve not been privy to with them as we haven’t been in this situation since 2015. So that’s interesting.”

Hull’s stock has fallen so sharply that former player Garry Schofield this week said he feels Hull should get a 46-point start against in-form Giants.

“We are capable of turning it around,” added Radford, who is desperate to make sure the club’s season does not tamely peter out.

“There isn’t a great deal of pressure externally with some pundits giving us a 46-head start. It’s the first time in a while I’ve coached such a heavy underdog.”

In contrast, Huddersfield – who still have a slim chance of the semi-finals – have lost just one league game since April 27.

Radford added: “They have been scraping wins, then building on it and that’s something we want to do. Every week they’ve got taller, their chests have got wider. That’s what we have to try and find before the end of the season.”