Hull V Crystal Palace at The KC Stadium : Match Preview

22 November 2013 03:31
Hull V Crystal Palace - view commentary, squad, and statistics of the game live.

McShane loving life at the top

Hull's cult hero Paul McShane is relishing life back in the Premier League and admitted that after relegation he had feared it was the end of his time in the top flight.

The 27-year-old defender has broken back into Steve Bruce's first team after enduring a frustrating spell and he now hopes it will lead to a recall for the Republic of Ireland.

McShane, who was voted Hull's player of the year last season, admits he can be impatient when he is not first choice but is loving life back in the top division.

He said: "I have enjoyed just being back in the Premier League. When we were relegated I was thinking 'will I ever get the chance to play in it again?', so every game now I just relish. In my opinion it is the best league in the world and I'm glad to be a part of it.

"It has been great the last year or so, so I just hope it continues.

"I've had to bide my time this season and wait for my chance, that came against Spurs and I did all right and I've been playing ever since.

"I can be quite impatient when I am not playing. I give everything in training so if it comes to matchdays and I'm not playing I don't take it too well.

"I have never knocked on the gaffer's door, there have been times when he has had to come to me because I've been upset at not playing.

"Doubts creep in but deep down I had always had confidence in myself, I knew every day I had a responsibility to come in and train well and not to be too much of a pain around the place.

"As I've grown older I've had to change my ways a bit, that just comes with experience and being a little older and wiser and I've tried not to be too mouthy."

McShane had a loan spell at Crystal Palace, the visitors to Hull's KC Stadium on Saturday, and still feels grateful for his time there.

He added: "It was grand, at the time I needed to get out and play. I didn't really want to leave Hull but I had to because I was getting no game time at all and I enjoyed it."

McShane has played three times for the Republic this year but was omitted from the most recent squad and has hopes of a recall - especially with Roy Keane, whom he played under at Sunderland, being appointed assistant to new manager Martin O'Neill.

He said: "I just want to keep playing and keep performing and hopefully I will be a part of it."

Hull keeper Allan McGregor is expected to return to face Palace after making a speedy recovery from a thigh injury.

Robbie Brady is also expected to return after a hernia problem, but fellow Irish midfielder Stephen Quinn is out after suffering a hamstring injury on international duty.

Crystal Palace caretaker boss Keith Millen hopes to bow out with a win at Hull to kick-start a revival for the Eagles.

Bottom-of-the-table Palace face their fellow newly-promoted side with Tony Pulis reportedly close to agreeing to succeeding Ian Holloway, who left Selhurst Park on October 23.

Following the trip to the 2017 UK city of culture, Palace play Norwich, West Ham and Cardiff in fixtures Millen believes they should be targeting points.

"Short term, if we can get some results in the next four, then we're in touching distance of four or five teams," Millen said.

"I think that's the best we can hope for at the moment.

"We've got to look at the next four games. With all due respect to the teams we're playing, they are teams that we feel we've got to try to get some results from.

"There's enough points to play for us to survive, without a doubt.

"You look at the group work, there's no lack of confidence and belief there and they're fighting for the cause. And that's all you can do.

"Further down the line, who knows? Short term we've got to start getting some wins, getting within touching distance of some teams above us and see where that takes us."

If Saturday's match turns out to be Millen's last of four games in charge, he will look back on his spell with fondness.

He added: "Palace has been the team I've supported all my life.

"To be in charge, to stand there against the likes of Arsenal, Arsene Wenger and Everton, it's been an honour.

"I've been proud of the response the players have given me. I've enjoyed every minute of it. I want to win some football matches and the players do. It starts on Saturday."

Midfielder Jonny Williams is available following an ankle injury for Palace.

Robert Koren is available after a foot injury, while long-term absentee Sone Aluko (Achilles injury) is also missing.

Source: PA