Mike Phelan prepares for key Crystal Palace battle

Mike Phelan prepares for key Crystal Palace battle

Hull host the Eagles in a relegation rivalry on Saturday afternoon.

Chris Lincoln

Hull City manager Mike Phelan has spent the week preparing his troops for an important bottom of the table clash, admitting “Crystal Palace will be a tough opponent".

"Both sides will look to execute their set-plays as best they can"

Vavel have anticipated that set pieces will be crucial to the outcome of the match before the Hull boss added his thoughts on the key area. Phelan suggested "we know Palace are strong on set-pieces, but we know that they can be vulnerable at set-pieces as well. Football comes down to small margins at times and sometimes that can be a set-piece".

He added “both sides will look to execute their set-plays as best they can, it’s an important part of the game".

Phelan is hoping to rally his troops into using their home advantage to steal three points and lift the club out of the relegation zone. He explained: “We’ve done quite well at home of late and I’m expecting the same again this weekend. Opponents will always look to make it difficult for you, but this is a chance for us to kick on and get the required result to take us out of the bottom three".

"We'll see a different performance on Saturday"

The Hull manager also responded to criticism of his side's performance in a 1-0 defeat to Middlesbrough on Monday night.

He suggested “the reaction we got after Monday’s game was quite down from all quarters with regard to negativity". Yet he explained that "a lapse in concentration" cost his side the game, though "from a game-plan point of view it was about what we were trying to do".

However Phelan has promised a reaction from his players on Saturday afternoon. He stated “we’ll see a different performance on Saturday. There’ll be a team out there that will hopefully do itself justice by creating opportunities to score goals and defending better when it matters". If Hull put those ideals into practice they could lift themselves out of the bottom three come Saturday evening.