Difficult Owners, Difficult Job - A Hull City FC Story


Jul 24, 2019
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Hello everyone, my new Football Manager 2019 adventure will see me take on the tough managerial job of Hull City Football Club. There are a few things to cover before I actually get into the story and I hope that you can understand them. Firstly, I just wanted to say thank you for all of your support for my previous story - AC Milan, I really appreciate all of the likes and comments and it would be fantastic if that could continue over to this story as well.

[FONT=&quot]What happened to my AC Milan save?[/FONT]
I don't think I've given up on this save yet, but I might just put it aside for a little while. Ultimately, while we weren't massively overachieving, I probably would like a slightly tougher challenge for what could possibly be my final story for Football Manager 2019 anyways. I therefore decided that I should start sooner so that I can deeper into the save. I hope you can understand this and I realise that the Milan one didn't last very long, which is why I plan to post more frequent updates and play through the game a little more with my free time.

[FONT=&quot]Why Hull City?[/FONT]
Firstly, I didn't want to start too low down on the managerial ladder, but did want a challenge where at some point I would be fighting for a promotion of sorts. Hull appealed to me as they're predicted to finish in the lower echelons of the league and won't be a first season promotion bar a miraculous overachievement. Another reason was transfers; I'm always one to make a lot of them. However, Hull have a minimal budget and have huge issues with their owners (Assem Allam), which have marred all of the positives in recent years; even when they achieved promotion to the Premier League.
A Brief History

Jarrod Bowen

Hull City FC are obviously based in Hull. They were founded in 1904 and play their football at the KCOM Stadium. Prior to the move to a new stadium in 2002, the club had played for a total of 56 seasons at their previous venue, Boothferry Park. The club has certainly had its issues, but has come through a bit of a resurgence since the 21st century. They've only been in the Premier League a select number of times, and have never been particularly good in it. Nowadays, and in their most recent season especially, the club is relying on the ability of young star player Jarrod Bowen to keep their heads above water. They've not had too many world renowned players in their ranks over the years, perhaps the best known was Jay-Jay Okocha, who played their towards the back end of his career.


Kamil Grosicki

Overseeing the Squad

Unfortunately we're going to begin our squad overview with a bit of disappointment rather than a positive note. Obviously the appointment at Hull won't make things easy. Already there's been some known issues between myself and the owner regarding midfielder Markus Henriksen. I'm of the firm belief that he's a crucial part of our team, who played quite well in 2018-19, but Allam believes selling him to give himself a little more pocket money is a better idea. Grant McCann already couldn't handle it, so how will I?

Squad Positives
- Great young core to develop about it
- Pretty solid cover in most positions
- Jarrod Bowen is a plus point himself

Squad Negatives
- Young but lack of experience and not much star ability
- Minimal funds to improve the squad list
- Assem Allam could continuously offload star players without my input

Key Player - Jarrod Bowen
Bowen is obviously our star man. I've said it countless times already I think!!! Anyway, he's built for the Premier League already and still has plenty of room to develop and grow. If he can't perform up to standard for us, than we're going to have a very tough season. Quite simply, our attack moves through him and we are relying on him and Grosicki to be out star turns.

Hidden Gem - Jordy De Wijs
It's not often that under a category such as this you pick a Central Defender, but it's the case here! Our very own Dutch CB Jordy De Wijs has some really good defensive stats on him and could prove crucial to us. Despite being only 23, he also presents a mentoring figure to some of the even younger lads in the squad and has already become a vital part of our dressing room.

Young Gun - Leo Da Silva Lopes/Daniel Batty
I've gone for two youngsters here, simply because they'll be crucial to us in a few years time I'm sure! New signing Da Silva Lopes is a tricky, rapid winger with bags of ability and if he can get a bit of consistency about him, I'm sure he'll become Premier League worthy and perhaps even beyond. As for Batty, he's good all of the qualities which a solid DM needs. Tall, good passer and good at tackling. Will be on the bench to start, but I see him as a future captain.

Transfer Listed - No-one!
Here's one positive at least. Our squad is quite young so I don't want to sell any of the more experienced players and all the youth look likely to eventually develop into a squad player at the least for us. I don't plan to be doing much business unless Allam decides to forcefully sell some players, but hopefully he doesn't. Kamil Grosicki is the eldest member of our team, incidentally, at 30 years of age.


It's still early days but this is how I see our starting lineup for the time being. I'm waiting in the wings for Allam's verdict on Markus Henriksen, so I've kept him out of the picture for now. I may tinker with it, but I think a balanced wing play seems solid so that we can incorporate what is likely our best area of the pitch, the full-backs and the wingers.


Jordy De Wijs

Pre-Season + Transfer Market

Pre-Season went fairly well I think it's fair to say. I don't think there's too much here to read into because we didn't really encounter difficult opponents. I saw some promising signings from my lads as Nouha Dicko, my main striker, stood out in games with a very solid finishing ability which I'm hoping carries across to the new season. Striker is an area which could probably use some improvement in the future.

Transfer Market

Outgoing Transfer; I guess it's fair to say there was only ever going to be one winner in the Markus Henriksen transfer saga: Mr. Assem Allam. He's forced me into selling someone who was a vital cog in our machine for a miniscule 1.1m! AZ have got a bit of a bargain here if you ask me and Henriksen could well be sorely missed unfortunately.

Incoming Transfer; We replace Henriksen with a player pretty much taking up our entire transfer budget, Blackburn's young midfielder Lewis Travis. He should be a solid investment and while he's not a direct replacement, I think Travis is a versatile ability and a slightly more defensive midfielder was necessary as we have a few more attack minded midfielders in the team.

Incoming Loan; Callum Connolly joins to cover for the team and will be a very useful backup player for our team. He seems like a very solid overall player with the ability to play in several positions across the defence. Everton have let him come on loan for some game time and there could be quite a chance that they'll be using him themselves shortly if this goes well.

Player Focus

David Milinkovic is a bench player, but played vastly in pre-season. He was used in 6 different positions across the park during the competition and proved his versatility by doing a solid job in all of them. One of them was totally out of position at wing-back, but he still came up with a solid performance. Got to be happy with that!​
Good Thread

Hey mate, the story is looking and it's a very interesting save I'm really looking forward to seeing how this one unfolds
Hey mate, the story is looking and it's a very interesting save I'm really looking forward to seeing how this one unfolds
Thanks mate, it's something I've never tried myself. Hopefully it goes well and hope you enjoy it!

Nouha Dicko

EFL Championship Gets Underway

*please note the skin doesn't show some of the goals scored as it's blacked out by the background colour. Apologies but you can still tell the score!

We got underway with a solid enough draw to Middlesbrough. They're a better side than us so I was happy to nick a point here. Grosicki showed his quality today in a stellar performance and got us level eventually which was nice to see. I think it was definitley a deserved result as the lads took the game to Boro in the 2nd half and their work paid off nicely.


We then got handed our first defeat to Huddersfield which was unfortunate, but in all fairness it was probably a deserved result. We may've nicked a draw if we were a little more clinical but they too could've had more than a goal. Being recently relegated though, Huddersfield were eager to get up and running for promotion and did so here against us.


A great result here at home to West Brom!! 2-0! They're promotion hunters and we turned in a high quality performance as we fully merited our two goal win here. Once again, Grosicki showed his quality for the team and Jarrod Bowen got his season underway. I think this game really typified how important our wingers are for our team.


Wow! A thoroughly brilliant performance from the lads here as we thrash Fulham! At half time we were cruising at 4-0 thanks to a Nouha Dicko hat-trick and the second half was in a way disappointing because it was marred by a serious injury to Kamil Grosicki, a minor one to Jackson Irvine, and two stoppage time goals to make the scoreline look nicer. A wonderful performance and I'm grateful that their goals didn't come earlier as they dominated us in truth, 29 shots to 11!


Another respectable result earned here away to Derby. They're struggling a little and it was another disappointing outcome for them I'm sure as they missed a penalty, had a goal disallowed and got a man sent off. I'll certainly take it, but I would've been well ****** off if I was Derby today because while they didn't truly dominate us, but they were well unlucky.

Carabao Cup

We did get our revenge against Huddersfield with a 1-0 win here in the Carabao Cup. Thankfully, Grosicki, a very injury prone player, didn't suffer a huge blow here, he's only out for 1-2 days but at the time couldn't continue. He's been our star performer to date so it would've been a crucial blow to us. Jordy De Wijs was the surprise man to score the winner as he belted one from long range and it went in top bins!


We got another win against Fulham in the Carabao Cup 2nd Round as well! Nouha Dicko got another two goals, and Jackson Irvine was the man who got the late winner in the 91st minute as we twice came from behind to get the win! There was also a period of 3 goals in the space of a minute, as we levelled it up, Arter put them back in front and then Dicko responded again! Madness!

League Table

The League Table is looking pretty solid for us at the moment - we're just outside the play-offs and overachieving by being there as it is! Everything is going pretty well at the moment. Marco Silva had a discussion with me about Callum Connolly not playing much for us, I couldn't resolve it because i'm not going to remove him, so there is a prospect lingering that he could be recalled in January if I don't play him.

Medical Room

It's always tough to deal with when a star player gets injured for a month or two and especially so when they're in red hot form! I spoke in the last update about David Milinkovic's versatility and that could well come in handy as he will replace him for his time out. Tough to see Grosicki be the one to get injured, but he does have an injury proneness and hopefully we can make do without his services for the next month or so.

Player Focus

Nouha Dicko really came alive towards the end of the month, with 5 goals in 3 games after none prior! He's really helped us and is beginning to make a name for himself against Fulham, winning both of our games against them this month almost by himself! Hopefully this red hot form can continue from our main man up top who very well may've finally found his feet.

Hey mate. Is your post above meant to have more images as you only have 1 image on it
Hey mate. Is your post above meant to have more images as you only have 1 image on it
Hey mate, thanks a lot for letting me know. I guess this means that it doesn't work. Appreciate that, as this is how it appears when I go to look at it:

Reece Burke

Pressure Already Beginning To Mount

*Note: Sorry about the last update having no images, I tried out something but that didn't work unfortunately. Thanks.


A terrible month following on from the success of the last one here! From the start we disappointed, beginning with a draw against lowly Luton, who we really should be beating. Kamil Grosicki returned from injury for the last 4 games of the month, scored in all of them bar 1, and then picked up a twisted ankle! I've no doubt that he would've gone onto greatness if his career wasn't spoiled by countless injuries.

D (2-2) vs Luton: When you look at the fact that we were up 1-0 on 83 minutes and would score again despite a red card for David Milinkovic (who, by the way, has been shocking despite me talking him up recently), you'd think we'd have won surely, especially against a side such as Luton, no disrespect to them. But it wasn't to be, in fact we went 2-1 down before Kevin Stewart just about rescued us a point in the 89th minute.

L (2-1) vs Blackburn: This month we had more favourable fixtures, but we just aren't performing in them! By the time Tom Eaves registered his first club goal off the bench for us it was too little too late and Blackburn had already run us off the park then. One positive was youngster Josh Bowler coming in for the suspended Milinkovic and being our best performer. Aside from that, awful.

D (1-1) vs Brentford: Probably the only result in the league I'm not disappointed with this month. A draw against Brentford is a solid result for most teams in the league, and especially so when it's 1-0 Brentford and you're down to 10 men. But that's what we did here as Callum Connolly's first major start resulted in an embarrassing tackle which earned him a straight red card. Kamil Grosicki's return meant that we finally had someone who could actually perform for us and he registered here.

L (2-1) vs Preston: Even though we lost here, it highlighted the importance of Grosicki again! To put in into context, Jordy De Wijs was 2nd best with a match rating of 6.8, but Grosicki managed an 8.3. We are placing everything into his hands right now and while he's performing I don't want to see that as we're looking really desperate without him. Sort it please, lads!

Carabao Cup, W (2-0) vs Swansea: Of course we save our best performance for a less important fixture. The Carabao Cup is not a bad tournament but I'd much rather us be getting wins in the league than here. Jarrod Bowen finally showed what he's capable of with a blistering performance which tore Swansea apart, and Grosicki continued to find form for us. Our wingers are our main players and there's not much coming from elsewhere at the moment.

L (2-3) vs Millwall: This very well could be the worst of the lot. Not due to the opposition, but because we absolutely battered Millwall here 27 shots to 6, at least had a point to our name on 90 minutes, before Tom Bradshaw pops up with a 92nd minute volley which flies into the top corner. To top it off, Neil Harris admits how lucky they were with the late winner and Kamil Grosicki picked up his monthly ****** injury as well! He's out for the month now, brilliant!

League Table

After the success of the last month, this one has fallen flat on its face! We are beginning to show signs of real struggle now despite having the trickier fixtures in the first month! I'm not sure what it is, but we keep the cup wins coming and can't notch a win right now in the league. Assem Allam isn't known for his patient demeanor regarding results, so I'll have to watch my step next month! I guess it also goes to show how much of a miss Grosicki is and will be for another month before he gets back from injury!

Player Focus
Jarrod Bowen has gone from Superman to the Invisible Man this season. He's supposed to be our main man, yet aside from the cup games, he's done next to nothing for the team. It's really disappointing because you can see without his performances, Grosicki alone isn't enough to carry us over the line in games, which really leaves us in the lurch!

Results were once again really poor this month and my job as well as our position on the league is already almost in a precocious state. The only that saved us was the introduction of Josh Magennis into the team instead of the inconsistent Nouha Dicko and within his first two games he scored two goals to give us crucial wins for our entire season.

L (0-2) vs Nottingham Forest: I came into this game really not knowing what to expect. We were slightly up against it, but I didn't think it would be such a one sided affair which on another day Forest easily could've won by 3 or even 4. We offered nothing in attack, and thankfully our somewhat sturdy defence saw us retain a more respectable scoreline.

L (2-1) vs Charlton: I really thought that this could be the game where we could turn our fortunes around against newly promoted Charlton, but it was same old story as Nouha Dicko's stoppage time goal saved us from a bit of embarrassment in truth. We were outplayed on the day and I was really hoping for a better performance from the lads.

L (0-2) vs Sheffield Wednesday: Can't complain about this result. Wednesday came into the game in 1st spot and they showed us why as they thoroughly deserved the win here today. I'm leaning towards a change of tactic next month and perhaps this match really enforced the need to do so. Had a couple of chances but ultimately a deserved defeat.

D (0-0) vs Reading: I changed the mentality from balanced to positive for this match and I'd like to say it worked. We played some brilliant football and some of the missed chances were unbelievable. Dicko blazed a simple tap-in over the bar and Irvine and Bowen respectively missed one on one chances. A lovely display of football but a terrible one of finishing. Gutted not to score and win here!

W (1-0) vs Barnsley: Better. Magennis came in today and with the new mentality he showed his superior finishing with a killer effort from just inside the box which proved to be an early winner. Barnsley are overachieving and well ahead of us in the league at the moment, so this was actually a pretty solid win, especially considering it was our first after 10 games.

Carabao Cup; W (2-1) vs Nottingham Forest: I'm not disappointed with this by any means, but why couldn't my lads have done this in the league instead??? Again, Magennis showed his solidity in front of goal with a calm one on one finish just after half time. Dicko came off the bench to net the winner and it was good to see him scoring again.

League Table

Nervy times as we drop down to 20th position this month and if this form continues I've no doubt we'll face a relegation battle. Hopefully Magennis can continue his good form since coming into the team, Grosicki can fire when he gets back and Jarrod Bowen can start to produce performances worthy of his immense potential.

Player Focus

Kamil Grosicki is such a vital player and he's been out for the majority of our campaign! He's got the highest average rating in the entire Championship and we really need to ensure that he doesn't pick up too many more injuries or otherwise this poor run of form could easily continue. He's back at around the halfway point of next month.

Well that was short lived, wasn't it? I think that's the shortest time I've ever been in a job on FM. It never materialised for me and Hull, in particular Mr. Assem Allam, who of course decided to leave the club with me and Andy Ambler has taken over the reigns of chairman at the worst possible time because I won't be there for it! I certainly had much higher hopes for this save, but I found that the team wouldn't perform in most tactics and it was really hard to get a system working.

After a positive start, we went on an awful run of 1 win in 10 and then after another 5 defeats, it was my time to leave the club.

I'm going to try one more story and if that fails I'll return to Milan because I'm more confident there. I hope that's all ok with you as I would really like to try another story out. I'm hoping that it's a success and ultimately I don't think it can be worse than how this went, sacked in 6 months! The owner trouble was obviously an even bigger issue than I accounted for and I won't be picking that club again anytime soon.

Thanks and hope you will join me on my new adventure!