New boy Tommy Elphick is excited about the potential he sees in a young Hull City side after marking his debut with a morale-boosting victory over Ipswich Town.
Goals from Jarrod Bowen and Jackson Irvine earned City a 2-0 win at the KCOM Stadium on Saturday, helping Nigel Adkins’ side to climb up to 17th position in the Championship.
The Tigers will get the chance to pull further clear of the bottom three when travelling to Wigan Athletic tomorrow and Elphick believes there is plenty more to come from his new team.
“I see a really hungry group with some great potential and talent,” said Elphick, who made his first appearance in defence following a season-long loan move from Aston Villa.
“Anything can happen in this league.
“I have been there, seen it and done it with a team that were never expected to do what we did.
Confidence and momentum can take you so far in this league, especially with a young group.
“Behind the scenes, the culture that the gaffer has created with his staff is an exciting thing. I am privileged to be part of it and will hopefully have a good year.
“It will grow and winning breeds confidence and clean sheets do for defenders. It is a massive week and we will draw a line under this game and analyse it and learn from it and hopefully get better and make it into an even better three points with a good performance on Tuesday.”
Elphick was parachuted straight into City’s defence alongside Jordy de Wijs on Saturday and the former Championship title-winning captain was quick to make an impression.
The Tigers were largely untroubled by Ipswich, with David Marshall asked to make just one save of note in the entire 90 minutes.
That ended a run of eight league and cup games without a clean-sheet and set new standards for a previously frail defence.
“Clean sheets win you titles,” said Elphick. “I have been a great believer in that. Strikers win you games, but if you are going to do anything in this league, you need to keep a fair amount of clean sheets. That’s one down and there’s plenty more opportunities coming up.
“David had one save, but he does so much talking and keeps us switched on and he was superb with his feet.
“Don’t underestimate the performance he had in the clean sheet. Reece Burke played at right-back and showed another string to his bow and was absolutely fantastic there.
“Jordy was comfortable all afternoon and Stephen Kingsley was brilliant until he came off and Todd (Kane) dropped back in. There were different things happening and I thought we dealt with the situation really well.”
Elphick’s first appearance in City colours is likely to begin a key role for the defender this season, whose first-team opportunities have been limited at parent club Aston Villa.
“It is nice to get a bit of life again,” he added. “It has been a frustrating 18 months and hopefully we can kick on a bit.
“There are some really good, young centre-halves here and defenders and hopefully I can pass on some knowledge.”
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