Shawcross breaks Hull’s brave resistance
Homeside saw defender James Chester sent off before scoring the opener through Nikica Jelavic
Ryan Shawcross of Stoke City scores the equalising goal during against Hull City at the KC Stadium. Photograph: David Rogers/Getty Images
Hull City almost held on. Steve Bruce’s side protected their goal admirably for 69 minutes with 10 players after the 14th-minute dismissal of defender James Chester.
A goal on the break from Nikica Jelavic had Tigers fans hoping for a second successive victory in the Premier League for the first time since September last year but Ryan Shawcross ruined it for the hosts.
The Stoke captain claimed an 83rd-minute equaliser that came with the help of the post and the goal decision system as Mark Hughes’s visitors made hard work of collecting their first point of the season.
It started badly for Bruce’s team. A mistake from Allan McGregor cost Hull on Thursday in the Europa League as they were beaten 1-0 by Lokeren in Belgium and the condition must be catching. This time three team-mates in front of the Scotland goalkeeper combined to give Hull a disadvantage in the 14th minute.
Paul McShane’s pass to Jake Livermore was practically uncontrollable and the stabbed bass backwards was intercepted by Glenn Whelan, bursting forward from midfield. Chester lunged in a split-second too late, Whelan went down and Chester went off. Referee Jon Moss had little choice.
Hull switched from 3-5-2 to 4-4-1 and immediately embarked on Operation Frustration.
Steven N’Zonzi would have met Peter Odemwingie’s cross but for Tom Huddlestone’s intervention before Erik Pieters, forward from left-back, lashed a first-time drive over the bar.
Shawcross also volleyed over as Hull struggled to clear from Marko Arnautovic’s corner and Hughes had seen enough. Bojan Krkic, the summer signing from Barcelona, was sent on to add guile to Stoke’s attack but his first contribution was a timid attempt to block Huddlestone’s shot in the build-up to Hull’s goal in the 42nd minute.
Asmir Begovic got a hand to it but Jelavic got to the loose ball before Marc Wilson and slid the ball home from a tight angle.
Stoke lost their opening fixture of the season at home to Aston Villa and face the daunting trip to Manchester City on Saturday. Understandably, their desperation to collect a first point of the season intensified.
Arnautovic made a mess of a volley at the back post before Shawcross’s low side-footed was well gathered by Allan McGregor in the Hull goal.
Charlie Adam was Hughes’ final throw of the dice and his first involvement was to fire in a vicious shot from 25 yards that
McGregor did well to push over. Peter Crouch almost capitalised when McGregor pushed Bojan’s cross-shot into his path but the goalkeeper again reacted quickly to snatch away the chance.
It was starting to look like it would not be Stoke’s day until they got a stroke of fortune with seven minutes left.
Bojan’s cross was fired against the post by Bardsley. The ball hit McGregor and Shawcross forced the ball in.