Hull FC produced a season worst display at Salford, going down 42-14 on Monday afternoon.
Here is Up the Cream’s Five Things column.
1.. Horrendous performance – the worst of the season to date
If those that didn’t make the trip over to Salford are wondering if that’s an over reaction, no it’s not. Hull were absolutely horrendous.
Salford were much the better team but what we as fans struggle to fathom is when an opposition wants it more. Salford showed more desire and heart to go out and get the result. In fact, when they realised they had the measure of Hull they just ran away with it.
Some of those Hull players were short of effort, pride, and self respect. They are a shadow of their former self. They were short on energy and they went through the motions. It was pathetic and they got exactly what they deserved.
2.. Manner of defeat
Defeats are part and parcel of sport but as always it’s how you get beat that defines you, and make no mistake about it, this was horrendous. It just wasn’t good enough and should never be accepted.
Where was the effort, grit and determination that we saw an abundance of earlier in the season? Where was the will to win and the desire to defend? There was none of that here and pride was sorely lacking at the AJ Bell Stadium.
Some will be quick to point out those missing but there was more than enough on the field to get the job done, and let’s not forget who Salford had out either.
Salford… god. Talk about a side full of “less known” and “journeyman” players, but you wouldn’t have known who were the so called journeymen and who were the so called overpaid “superstars” watching that.
Talk about a lack of fight and a side going through the motions. That’s where the frustration comes out, and this side deserve all the criticism they get. They are unrecognisable to the team who started the year.
3.. Big players, big attitudes
When you think the season was on the line, then that performance was even more shocking. A win given results elsewhere and the play-offs were in Hull’s hands, but even now with a top six finish still mathematically possible, one can only question if this lot really have the mentality to be great again.
It was the sort of display that left you questioning attitudes and mental strength, and it’s the same core again where the questions lay.
These types of performances cost Lee Radford his job, but here we are again at a crossroads with a new coach who can’t do anything about it whilst these players are here with these big attitudes.
We all know the leadership group at Hull run the show. They’ve done some incredible things in the past, but their time is up now.
They must see that. They must know that these performances aren’t good enough. If not then they’ve got a massive attitude problem.
Do this lot want to be elite again? Or are they happy living on past endeavours? Right now it seems it’s the latter, and nothing will change until the hierarchy take a different direction.
4.. Scott and Wynne
Two Hull players deserve some credit after the Salford game and they are the two young guns Cameron Scott and Connor Wynne.
Both started the game in the centres and both were a threat when they got the ball.
Admittedly both also faded as Salford began to run away with it, but both deserve some praise at least.
It’s a sad reflection as well when you consider the value Hull are getting out of those players (who are presumably two of the lowest earners) considered to some of the highest who just aren’t cutting it right now.
Fair play to them both.
5.. Dark times ahead
Hull have poorly managed their cap to the point where they can’t do anything about this squad until 2023.
Paying off players isn’t feasible and they are stuck with what they have for next year at least.
Fans have had enough too. As usual the chairman talked about silverware and “top four spines” before the season started but the reality is Hull couldn’t be further away from that if they tried.
The chairman has also moaned about money for god knows how long but he’ll have a point soon as fans will vote with their feet and membership numbers will take a hit. That’s the nature of the beast.
It’s worrying. What happens then? A £2.5 million or so squad can’t be sustainable with a reduced TV deal (thus reduced central funding) and 5,500 or so members.
How long then before the club have to look at other options?
One shudders at the thought of one of Hull’s best players being sold to balance the books, but that could be a reality soon.
These are dark times and there doesn’t seem to be any answers.