OPTIMISM is one of the prerequisite requirements of being a Premier League manager and, while the supporters who were forced to endure this tepid affair might not agree, both Sam Allardyce and Phil Brown found reasons to be cheerful.
For Blackburn – who remained 12th, two points above 16th-placed Hull – it was the performance of the defence and the promise of striker Nikola Kalinic.
Rovers have now kept clean sheets in four of their last five games and after three successive goalless draws, want to make the next step.
“We have got another very important clean sheet, which breeds the confidence,” said Allardyce. “We have just got to find the one-nils that give us the three points. We are not clinical enough in front of goal.”
The chief culprit in that regard was Kalinic, who had three good opportunities in quick succession after being introduced off the bench in the 59th minute.
Allardyce thought Kalinic should have had a penalty after being upended by Kamil Zayatte.
The game was perhaps an even more of a wasted opportunity for Hull, who remain just three points above the bottom three and now face a daunting Christmas and new year.
The Tigers travel to Arsenal next week before hosting Manchester United. They then play Bolton and face Chelsea, Tottenham and United again in January.
Yet Brown is drawing encouragement from his side’s home form – 15 points from nine games – and also sees the Blackburn result as a good platform.
Brown said: “The last four home games have brought eight points and if we continue in that manner then the home form would be sufficient – but we do have to start picking up points away from home.”
REFEREE: Chris Foy (Merseyside) 5: Allardyce probably had a point with his penalty complaints.
MATCH RATING: * Dismal stuff.
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