Adkins determined not to let Hull’s play-off chase ‘fizzle out’

Hull head coach Nigel Adkins believes his side’s 2-1 home win over Millwall keeps alive their hopes of reaching the Sky Bet Championship play-offs.

Hull’s win, with goals from Jarrod Bowen and Marc Pugh, took them to 47 points in a season which has seen a team predicted to struggle continue to defy expectations.

The victory, in front of a crowd of just over 10,000, also saw the Tigers bounce back from a 5-1 mauling at Brentford on Saturday.

Adkins said: “We are doing everything we can to make it an exciting finish to the season.

“The result was the most important thing tonight. It was important to get three points to keep the season alive.

“At the start of the season we were expected to get relegated. We are six points off the play-offs. I said to the players after the game ‘don’t let the season fizzle out’.”

Adkins paid tribute to the fans who turned up to cheer on his side.

He said: “Thank you to the supporters. The ones that have come. They did everything they could to lift the spirit of the payers.”

Adkins also felt Millwall’s equaliser should have been ruled out.

He added: “For me their equalising goal was a foul, a clear push from behind.”

Adkins praised Pugh, who marked his first Tigers start with the winning goal.

The Hull boss said: “A great finish for the second goal. Pughy gets on the end of the cross, controlled it well and a good finish. It was worthy of winning any game.”

Hull started the game well and Bowen claimed the first goal of the night as he looked to get a faint touch to Markus Henriksen’s shot after eight minutes.

Central defender Shaun Hutchinson levelled the scores a little over 10 minutes before the break with a close-range finish.

But Pugh restored Hull’s lead three minutes before half-time when he shot low into the goal from around eight yards after a sumptuous first touch.

The good work of Kamil Grosicki deserved more reward but the home side nearly paid the price for missed chances.

David Marshall saved well from Ryan Tunnicliffe and Bowen cleared a Jake Cooper header off the line as Hull did enough to keep hold of the victory.

Despite his side’s strong finish Millwall manager Neil Harris was disappointed with the two goals his side conceded.

Harris admitted: “They were two really poor goals we gave away.

“We are frustrated because we looked so solid and reliable for a couple of months.”

Harris was frustrated as goalkeeper Jordan Archer appeared to have Henriksen’s shot covered for the opening goal.

Harris said: “The first one is a good shot, it is going straight into Jordan’s arms but it hits Bowen and goes into the net.

“We scored a goal, we were a real threat on the counter-attack. Then we give a debacle of a second goal away.

“We made three or four errors leading up to the goal. The boy controlled the ball eight yards out and scored. That is not good enough at this level.”

However, Harris took some comfort from how his side performed.

He said: “It was a strong performance in so many ways and there were positives to take out of it. I am really pleased with how they applied themselves and how they played.”

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Football Paradise Staff Reporter

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