Curtis Davies shines as Hull fall just short vs. Manchester United

Hull City came within minutes of emerging through August unbeaten, but a gallant defensive effort proved cruelly insufficient at the KCOM Stadium. Mike Phelan's unlikely lads again found character and organisation in abundance, shutting down Manchester United and limiting star-studded opponents to minimal chances. It was almost enough to record a seventh point of the season but Marcus Rashford's stoppage-time goal snatched a 1-0 victory for an opponent with eyes on the Premier League title.


Individual players shone, none brighter than Curtis Davies, but the togetherness and unity being shown by a group once considered to be relegation fodder has helped make the opening month hugely encouraging. Hull City are not rolling over for anyone and the discipline instilled by Phelan is papering over the cracks of a threadbare squad. The connect between supporters and players has seldom felt so close than after a summer that once threatened a meltdown.


Hull City used the ball poorly at times and as a result, they struggled to release the pressure built up by Manchester United. The greater concern, however, is the lack of depth in Phelan's squad. After the game, Rio Ferdinand suggested it was "a disgrace" that a newly promoted team was still waiting to make a first signing and it becomes increasingly hard to disagree. The lack of recruitment to date has let down the players holding the club together.

Manager rating out of 10

7 -- Caretaker boss Mike Phelan did little different to the wins over Leicester and Swansea, yet it almost proved enough for another positive result. Albeit without the options he craves, Phelan could not turn the tide in the second half.

Player ratings (1-10; 10=best. Players introduced after 70 minutes get no rating)

GK Eldin Jakupovic, 7 -- A crucial low save kept out Rashford's shot bound for the bottom corner and then he showed terrific reactions to beat away an effort deflected off David Meyler. Unlucky not to keep a clean sheet behind a stoic defence.

DF Ahmed Elmohamady, 6 -- The right-back had done well in keeping Anthony Martial quiet and his early withdrawal was a feather in the cap. However, a tidy and persistent effort was undone when beaten far too easily by Wayne Rooney ahead of the winning goal.

DF Jake Livermore, 7 -- Supremely calm on the ball again as a makeshift central defender, but fortunate not to be punished when attempting to shield a ball out dead and undone by Luke Shaw. Another strong display nevertheless.

DF Curtis Davies, 9 -- Few central defenders in the Premier League can have started the season in such form. Another imperious display, typified by his blocks to keep out Rooney and Henrikh Mkhitaryan. Did not deserve to be on the losing side.

DF Andy Robertson, 7 -- Produced the cross of the game when almost picking out Robert Snodgrass at the back post but a couple of defensive lapses slightly blotted his copybook. Beaten too easily by Juan Mata inside the penalty box in the first half.

MF Tom Huddlestone, 7 -- A strong first half display from the cultured midfielder and was the quarterback that set up one break through Adama Diomande. Couldn't get on the ball as much after the break but almost found a deflected winner.

MF Sam Clucas, 8 -- Continues to make light of the fact this is a Premier League introduction and thrived in the chance to rub shoulders with Paul Pogba. Full of running from start to finish and hunted mistakes from his illustrious opponent.

MF David Meyler, 7 -- The best performance of his fledgling season as he galloped all around the KCOM Stadium. Shot narrowly over the bar just before Rashford's winner but did his best work in his own half with a series of clearances.

FW Robert Snodgrass, 7 -- Hull City's most purposeful attacker during the first half and sent a free-kick narrowly wide of the target. Almost got on the end of Robertson's deep cross but injured himself in the process. Replaced in the 48th minute.

FW Adama Diomande, 6 -- Produced some decent hold-up play to bring respite to his team but not enough. Needs to find greater consistency to complement the physicality that troubles opponents.

FW Abel Hernandez, 6 -- Often the only Hull City player within 50 yards of David De Gea's goal and offered scant support in the final third. Afforded one brief glimpse of the target late in the first half, shooting straight at the United keeper.


FW Shaun Maloney, 6 -- Enjoyed the occasional clever touch to link up play but most of his work had to come in his own half as City struggled to clear their lines.

DF Harry Maguire, N/R -- Emerged off the bench with seven minutes for his first league appearance of the season but couldn't help his team collapse over the line.