Football

All square at the KC: Match Review

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Sam Allardyce failed to get the better of his former assistant Phil Brown as Blackburn and Hull played out a scrappy goalless draw this afternoon.

Hull had the best opportunities of a tight but poor-quality Barclays Premier League encounter at the KC Stadium and felt Jozy Altidore was denied a clear penalty in the second half.

Blackburn had their opportunities, particularly after the introduction of the lively Nikola Kalinic, but had to settle for a point.

The result kept Rovers above Hull in the lower reaches of the table and both sides may see it as a wasted opportunity.

The match was billed as a battle between Brown and Rovers manager Allardyce, his former boss at Bolton.

Brown was visible throughout on the touchline but Allardyce, recovering from a recent heart operation, remained in the stands until the closing moments.

Brown, boosted by the presence of defenders Anthony Gardner and Andy Dawson after fitness tests, appeared to opt for caution with no out-and-out striker in his side.

Forward Craig Fagan started as the lone striker but Brazilian playmaker Geovanni was recalled in support in the absence of injured talisman Jimmy Bullard.

Blackburn, again without the influential David Dunn, settled quickly and Junior Hoilett won a free-kick in dangerous territory after cutting in from the left but Benni McCarthy shot over.

Defender Chris Samba then fired over and a Hoilett cross was volleyed in by McCarthy only for the South African to be denied by an offside flag.

Hull spurned a glorious opportunity in the 10th minute after Franco di Santo was robbed in midfield by George Boateng.

The Dutchman played in Fagan with a perfect throughball but the forward, one on one with Paul Robinson, shot too close to the goalkeeper.

Hull were annoyed when referee Chris Foy played on after Paul McShane was injured in a collision with Kamil Zayatte in the Tigers area but Vince Grella missed the target.

Geovanni, after a quiet opening, got the chance to run at the Blackburn defence just before the half-hour but his 30-yard shot did not trouble Robinson.

The former Barcelona man got another opportunity from a free-kick after Boateng was felled by Steven Nzoni but his initial effort hit the wall and Robinson saved his follow-up attempt.

Another chance opened up for Hull after Samba failed to clear a Geovanni ball.

Dean Marney took up the attack and found Stephen Hunt in space on the left but the Irishman shot tamely at Robinson.

McShane appealed for a penalty after going down in a challenge with Gael Givet but Foy was not interested.

Di Santo had the first shot of the second half but Boaz Myhill, recalled after missing the previous six games, was not troubled.

Boateng tried his luck with a long-range effort at the other end but Robinson saved comfortably low down.

Richard Garcia created a shooting opportunity as he dragged the ball back from a Gardner nod-down but, again, Robinson was not extended.

Blackburn went to route one to try to break the deadlock but substitute Nikola Kalinic shot into the side-netting after the ball bounced kindly in the area.

Kalinic caused further problems and outmuscled Gardner to get in another shot but his balance was upset and - with no foul given - shot weakly at Myhill.

The danger was not over but Hull somehow managed to scramble clear.

The ball fell to Kalinic again soon after when McShane headed an attempted clearance in his direction but this time the Croatian stabbed wide.

Hull were incredulous when they had a penalty appeal of their own turned down with 16 minutes remaining.

Substitute Altidore, introduced to give Hull a presence up front eight minutes earlier, appeared to have been tripped in a clumsy Samba challenge but Foy penalised the American for diving.

Hull responded by introducing the fresh vigour of Seyi Olofinjana and Jan Vennegoor of Hesselink of the bench.

Vennegoor of Hesselink had chances immediately but was punished for a foul before shooting at Robinson and then headed wide.

Kalinic continued to threaten the Hull defence but Gardner got the better of him with five minutes remaining and cleared.

Both sides continued to push for a winner in the closing moments but, as in the rest of the game, neither goalkeeper was troubled.

Copyright (c) PA Sport 2009, All Rights Reserved.

Topics:
Football
Blackburn Rovers
Premier League
Hull City
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