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Tuesday, July 06, 2010

The Road to Hull

After swapping Leicester for Hull, Turls explains his surprise at Nigel Pearson's decision to move from the Walkers Stadium to the KC.

Nigel Pearson has made the surprise move to newly relegated Hull City

When Leicester were beaten by Cardiff in the play-off semi finals, Nigel Pearson looked like a man who was disappointed to have lost. And quite rightly so. Nobody wants to lose, especially on penalties.

However, it would be easy for other football fans to forget that this was the man who turned the Foxes into a footballing juggernaut - albeit in League One and the Championship.

When Pearson took charge, Leicester had just fallen into the third tier of English football for the first time in their history. Now, on leaving, they are one of the pre-season contenders for promotion back to the Premier League.

The man is quickly becoming a quality manager and chairman Milan Mandaric will have acknowledged that it would have been difficult for the Walkers Stadium club to keep hold of him.

However, he wouldn't have expected him to join Hull City.

At Leicester, Pearson had the backing of the chairman, he was at a club with an impressive and established fan base - and in one of the best stadiums outside of the top flight.

He had a young and improving squad, and he was at a club that had put all their financial worries well and truly behind them. Leicester are a club that have everything in place to be in the Premier League.

Now, Pearson will be settling down at the KC Stadium - where everything appears to have gone mental. The Yorkshire club shocked everyone by avoiding relegation in their first season in the top flight.

They now find themselves heading back to where many feel they belong though - the Football League.

Pearson and Milan Mandaric have brought the good times back to Leicester

Hull are in real financial peril, and their performances have been nothing short of awful in the past 18 months.

They have a bloated squad and, although they have an impressive stadium, many predict that, unless Pearson can get the team winning straight away, the side could be playing in front of a lot of empty seats.

It seems strange for a man with a bright future to leave a club who could help him fulfil his ambition of managing in the Premier League in order to join a club who seem to be in free fall.

Maybe he didn't want to stagnate at Leicester? Maybe he is the type of manager who does a good job for a couple of seasons and then leaves before he settles into a monotonous routine?

Or maybe Hull threw a wheelbarrow full of cash at him and he couldn't say no?

Unfortunately, we'll never know the real reason, and we've already started hearing the generic responses that a manager spouts when he joins a new club.

I can't lie. I'm disappointed by his decision. I was hoping he would stay at Leicester and give them another chance of promotion. However, I resigned myself to the fact that there is no loyalty in football anymore - it's all about the money.

Hull might do well under Pearson, but the problem I have is that he has abandoned a project at Leicester for the 'glamour' of the Tigers. Managing a recently relegated club appears to be more prestigious than managing a recently promoted club.

They'll be the bookies tip to go straight back up, but I'd fancy a Pearson-inspired Leicester to beat a Pearson-inspired Hull any day of the week.

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