Bruce expects more feisty fixtures


Published: Wednesday 4th March 2015 by The News Editor

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Hull boss Steve Bruce expects plenty more “feisty” encounters as the relegation battle hots up between now and the end of the season.

Bruce is waiting to find out if there will be any disciplinary action taken against him for his part in a touchline clash with Sunderland manager Gus Poyet during the sides’ 1-1 draw on Tuesday night.

Poyet had been sent to the stands after lashing out at a drinks container in protest at Jack Rodwell’s yellow card for diving.

Before departing, he strode towards his opposite number and the pair shared a bitter exchange which left Bruce so irate he had to be restrained by assistant referee Stuart Burt as he tried to confront Poyet again.

The pair shook hands in a more cordial post-match meeting and Bruce believes the tension at the foot of the table makes such flashpoints inevitable.

“It was always going to be feisty. We’re both fighting for our lives, if it’s not feisty we may as well pack up and go home,” said Bruce.

“Both teams are in a fight and there’ll be games like this from now until the end of the season.

“We’re playing for high stakes so I expect it to be feisty.

“I don’t think there was a really bad tackle in the game but it was spiky, it was edgy and I would expect nothing less.”

Hull were on course for all three points after Dame N’Doye’s fine back-to-goal flick gave them a first-half lead, but Sunderland snatched a draw 13 minutes from time when Rodwell made sure Patrick van Aanholt’s goalbound cross found the net.

The Tigers had several good chances to claim a second but a mixture of modest finishing and excellent work by goalkeeper Costel Pantilimon kept Sunderland level.

As a result Hull remain a point above their opponents and Bruce was taking the positives from that.

“It may just be the point that keeps us up,” he said.

“We feel we did enough to get three points and certainly with us being at home Sunderland will think that’s a really good point.

“We’d love it to have been more but we mustn’t get carried away.”

Poyet’s dismissal from the dugout came in the 37th minute, but he was still able to have an effect on the game by phoning down substitutions from the stands.

He sent on Van Aanholt, Connor Wickham and Ricky Alvarez in the second period and felt all three contributed to the Sunderland comeback.

“We started the second half well and the substitutions changed the game,” Poyet told the Sunderland echo.

“Being in the stands gave me the opportunity to see things from a different point of view and we made different decisions because of that.

“Ricky, Connor and Patrick all did extremely well when they came on.

“It was a team effort. My staff also worked very hard and I’m pleased as I had to rely on them.

“I’d say it’s a well-earned point.”

Published: Wednesday 4th March 2015 by The News Editor

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