Writer: Matt Wilson
Date:Sunday April 1 2007
31.03.2007 - 3 p.m
Hull City would have expected a tightly contested affair against fellow relegation rivals Southend United, but the game was nothing of the sorts. City dominated from start to finish and the four goal margin was thoroughly deserved. Southend could not have argued had the scoreline been even greater.
Lee Peltier was introduced into the team for his first start having signed from Liverpool on loan as the injured David Livermore was forced to miss-out. Nick Barmby had expected to play but failed to make the bench after a last minute fitness test.
The wind proved for difficult conditions but it was City who was able to adjust to the conditions better than their opponents. After seven minutes, Dean Windass had the ball in the net but the goal was ruled out for offside after Nicky Forster's clever header caught Windass lurking beyond the last defender. However, it wouldn't be long before Windass did start to find the net.
The early stages saw City on-top but without creating a clear-cut chance. Forster was gifted the best chance of the game from Parlour's cross but the striker ducked out the way of the ball rather than heading the ball into the net. City went close again minutes later as Forster's run and cross was sent onto the bar by Southend's Peter Clarke as the visitors almost scored an own-goal.
Moments later and an Andy Dawson free-kick destined for the top corner was tipped over the bar by the hand of Daryl Flahavan. Another free-kick, this time delivered by Ray Parlour found Damien Delaney but he saw his header blocked on the line.
Two minutes before half-time and the Tigers took a deserved lead. Windass went down in the box and as his appeal was waved away, Peltier strode forward. Sodje`s challenge caused the on-loan midfielder to go down and a penalty was awarded. Windass strode forward and placed the ball down the centre of the goal. Flahavan saved with his legs but Windass followed up to tap the rebound into the empty net.
City started the second half in similar vein to the first. Elliott saw a drive well saved by Flahavan as the rebound fell just wide of Nicky Forster. Minutes later, Forster saw his drive from the edge of the area crash back off the bar as City searched for the second goal.
City needed to score the second but Elliott saw a shot drift wide and Windass saw a free-kick curl around the wall but wide of the post. Finally, with seventeen minutes remaining, City doubled their lead.
Andy Dawson whipped in a deep free-kick and as Flahavan flapped at the ball, Windass turned to steer the ball into the roof of the net and seal the three points for the Tigers.
Five minutes later and Dean Windass completed his hat-trick. Dawson's cross was deep to Windass and he had plenty of time to measure his volley into the bottom corner of the net. Three minutes later, in the eighty-second minute, Windass turned provider as he looked for the over-lapping Sam Ricketts who finished well from an acute angle for his first goal in a City shirt.
Dean Windass was substituted as the City crowd shoed their appreciation with a standing ovation as Vaz Te was introduced.
Southend registered their first shot on goal in injury time but Myhill was untroubled. City could have added a fifth but Marney's cross was volleyed over the bar by Nicky Forster.
Date:Sunday April 1 2007
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