Football

Hull City Tigers: More bark than roar?

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Will the name change affect Hull's fortunes?  (©GettyImages)
Will the name change affect Hull's fortunes? (©GettyImages).

In one of the best recent news stories, Hull City are no longer Hull City, instead they are now known as the Hull City Tigers (locally) and the Hull Tigers (nationally and internationally). 

The strange move has happened in a bid to make them more commercially known, a move made by owner Assem Allam.

Speaking to local newspaper Hull Daily Mail he spoke of the change: "In the commercial world, the shorter the name, the better. The more it can spread quickly.

"My dislike for the word 'City' is because it is common. I want the club to be special.

"It is about identity. ‘City' is a lousy identity. Hull City Association Football Club is so long."

Whereas his reference to ‘City’ being common, the Egyptian businessman is not wrong, but alongside the Hull Tigers this season you will not see the ‘Manchester Red Devils’, ‘Arsenal Gunners’ and ‘Manchester Citizens’, to name a few, as their opponents. 

It sounds more like an NFL franchise name than it does a Premier League football side.

The Tigers fans have not really caught on with the idea either, however Bernard Noble of the Hull City Official Supporters’ Club is caught in two minds about the decision, he told BBC Radio 5 Live: "My personal opinion is I'm disappointed because I'm a bit of a traditionalist.

"But this guy saved us from liquidation and administration and it's his club. I will still say 'I'm going to watch City', 'I'm going to watch the Tigers', 'I'm going to watch Hull'. I will still say that and so will many other people.

"As far as Hull City Tigers is concerned, the fans - the 25,000 people who will be there for the first home game against Norwich - they'll say 'I'm off down to watch City'."

Noble’s thoughts will bear reflection back to when Newcastle United’s hallowed St. James’ Park became known as the ‘Sports Direct Arena’. 

It is important for fans to remember that these name changes are commercial and do not have to be embraced by fans. 

Quite like Newcastle fans continuing to call St. James’ Park - St James' Park, Hull City fans will continue to do the same for their team.

This season will see their kit remain with the Hull City crest, but from 2014-2015 season it will be all change, but they are not the only Premier League new boy to have a change to the clubs heritage influenced by commercial reasons. 

Cardiff City changed their home kit to red in 2012 to outrage from the Bluebird fans, however one year on and a Premier League club, there seems to only a few murmurs of unhappiness at that decision.

If Hull City Tigers can survive relegation, and the name change brings some attraction to the club then it may not be a bad time to support the Hull Tigers. 

But for the time being, a name change does not appear to be a decision that will attract global attention to the city of Hull. 

 

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Topics:
Hull City
Premier League
Football
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