At the start of the campaign, nobody gave Hull City a prayer of staying in the Premier League this season.
The Tigers were promoted via the play-offs from the Championship but were in disarray after boss Steve Bruce quit the club soon after promotion.
The current Aston Villa boss is believed to have quit due to the lack of resources available to him. The Tigers had a threadbare squad and started the Premier League campaign with an injury list bigger than the local A and E’s.
Bruce’s replacement as the club’s boss was Mike Phelan, who for the first few weeks of the campaign galvanised his squad.
The Tigers look set for a promising season. That did not last and after a terrible run of results, Phelan was shown the door in early January.
At the time the move seemed slightly harsh. However, the club acted in January so they could bring in a boss who could reshape the squad in the window. The Tigers owners chose Portuguese boss Marco Silva and boy what a good decision that was.
Silva a relative unknown to EPL fans
Silva arrived on Humberside with a very decent CV. Despite being just 39-years of age he had managed Sporting Lisbon and Olympiakos, the latter he guided to the Greek top-flight title.
The Tigers boss will have been relatively unknown to some regular viewers of the Premier League. However, he had been building himself a reputation on the continent as a bright young boss.
Comparisons with current Manchester United boss Jose Mourinho were inevitable. Since arriving in England the boss has proven he is very much his own man and he has already shown he is a highly capable boss.
Did well to reshape the Hull squad
The Hull owners were never going to spend big money in January. Silva had to be creative with the funds at his disposal. He also had to sell two of the Tigers best players in winger Robert Snodgrass and midfielder Jake Livermore.
Silva was shrewd in January bringing in the likes of Oumar Niasse, Alfred N’Diaye, Lazar Markovic, Andrea Ranocchia and Kamil Grosicki, all on loan deals or for relatively small fees. The signings have paid off, with all five impressing for the Tigers.
Markovic and Niasse are regarded as Premier League rejects, having moved to England for big money and flopped at Liverpool and Everton respectively. However, at Hull, both have shined and proven key players in the Tigers revival.
Silva has done a fantastic job in building the team in a very short space of time. The new signings seem to have slotted in seamlessly into the Tigers team. A good manager gets the best of players and that’s what Silva has done in his short time on Humberside.
The Tigers now have a chance of survival
The Tigers now have a chance of surviving the drop and are odds of 5/4 to be relegated this season. When Silva took over the Tigers did not look like they had little hope of saving themselves from relegation.
The Portuguese boss has given the team and players the belief that they can stay up. Hull have not got the greatest bunch of players in the top-flight. However, they are working hard and together to keep the club in the top-flight.
Their survival hopes face a test on Saturday when the Tigers visit Manchester City. Even a loss at City would not cause the Tigers terminal harm in their fight for survival.
Keeping Hull City in the Premier League against all odds would be a major achievement for Marco Silva. He should surely be competing with Chelsea boss Antonio Conte for Premier League Manager of the Year, considering the situation he inherited when he arrived at the club.
Some will say he has not been at Hull long enough to be given the award. However, he has done a remarkable job at Hull. The Portuguese boss is only on a short-term contract. No matter what happens to Hull this season, I would be very surprised if Silva was not managing in the top-flight next season.
Would Silva be a contender for EPL Manager of the Year?
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