Hull City made the right choice in Nikica Jelavic and Shane Long - Fulham made mistake signing Kostas Mitroglou

The pair scored in the 2-2 draw at Craven Cottage

In January Steve Bruce spent £14m on Nikica Jelavic and Shane Long, two strikers who had a track record in the British game. Fulham, as part of a seven-man transfer window splurge, spent £12m on Kostas Mitroglou, a regular scorer in Greece, but new to the Premier League.

Two months later it is clear who made the better decision. After Jelavic and Long both scored at Craven Cottage on Saturday Hull City are all but safe, Fulham are staring into the abyss of relegation.

Hull’s new strikers have scored four goals apiece at a rate that would bring them a dozen each over a season. This is decent rather than prolific, but it has done the job for Hull, keeping them above the choppy waters of the drop zone. 

Mitroglou has not only not scored for Fulham, he has only played 119 minutes for them with his last goal coming for Greece in November. He has been hampered by injuries, but also by the apparent belief of manager Felix Magath (who inherited Mitroglu) that he lacks the fitness required to play in England.

“For me the two strikers we brought in at the right time have made the difference,” said Bruce. “We were in comfortable position in January and the chairman spent a lot of money. The two of them are a handful. You are only as good as your strikers, and they are as good a pair as any in the bottom half of the division.”

When Fulham signed Jelavic and Long they were four points ahead of Fulham. Had Fulham held on to the 2-0 lead Ashkan Dejegah and Fernando Amorebieta gave them on Saturday the gap between the clubs would have been three points. Without the goals of Long and Jelavic this spring the clubs would probably be level.

Instead, while Bruce can forward to enjoying Hull’s first FA Cup final, Magath has to pick his players up. “The players were very disappointed in the dressing room,” he said. “It seemed like it was the end of the season. They don’t talk. I told them: ‘it’s too late now, we have to let it go’. We cannot do anything about this now. We have to stand up and try to win at Stoke next week.

“We had chances to score after the second goal so the performance was all right. If we had played this game in September, nobody would care about it, everybody would be fine and the fans would be looking forward. But as the situation is for us now, then no.”

Suggested Topics
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
SPONSORED FEATURES
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Refugee crisis: David Cameron lowered the flag for the dead king of Saudi Arabia - will he do the same honour for little Aylan Kurdi?

Cameron lowered the flag for the dead king of Saudi Arabia...

But will he do the same honour for little Aylan Kurdi, asks Robert Fisk
Our leaders lack courage in this refugee crisis. We are shamed by our European neighbours

Our leaders lack courage in this refugee crisis. We are shamed by our European neighbours

Humanity must be at the heart of politics, says Jeremy Corbyn
Joe Biden's 'tease tour': Could the US Vice-President be testing the water for a presidential run?

Joe Biden's 'tease tour'

Could the US Vice-President be testing the water for a presidential run?
Britain's 24-hour culture: With the 'leisured society' a distant dream we're working longer and less regular hours than ever

Britain's 24-hour culture

With the 'leisured society' a distant dream we're working longer and less regular hours than ever
Diplomacy board game: Treachery is the way to win - which makes it just like the real thing

The addictive nature of Diplomacy

Bullying, betrayal, aggression – it may be just a board game, but the family that plays Diplomacy may never look at each other in the same way again
Lady Chatterley's Lover: Racy underwear for fans of DH Lawrence's equally racy tome

Fashion: Ooh, Lady Chatterley!

Take inspiration from DH Lawrence's racy tome with equally racy underwear
8 best children's clocks

Tick-tock: 8 best children's clocks

Whether you’re teaching them to tell the time or putting the finishing touches to a nursery, there’s a ticker for that
Charlie Austin: Queens Park Rangers striker says ‘If the move is not right, I’m not going’

Charlie Austin: ‘If the move is not right, I’m not going’

After hitting 18 goals in the Premier League last season, the QPR striker was the great non-deal of transfer deadline day. But he says he'd preferred another shot at promotion
Isis profits from destruction of antiquities by selling relics to dealers - and then blowing up the buildings they come from to conceal the evidence of looting

How Isis profits from destruction of antiquities

Robert Fisk on the terrorist group's manipulation of the market to increase the price of artefacts
Labour leadership: Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea

'If we lose touch we’ll end up with two decades of the Tories'

In an exclusive interview, Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea
Tunisia fears its Arab Spring could be reversed as the new regime becomes as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor

The Arab Spring reversed

Tunisian protesters fear that a new law will whitewash corrupt businessmen and officials, but they are finding that the new regime is becoming as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor
King Arthur: Legendary figure was real and lived most of his life in Strathclyde, academic claims

Academic claims King Arthur was real - and reveals where he lived

Dr Andrew Breeze says the legendary figure did exist – but was a general, not a king
Who is Oliver Bonas and how has he captured middle-class hearts?

Who is Oliver Bonas?

It's the first high-street store to pay its staff the living wage, and it saw out the recession in style
Earth has 'lost more than half its trees' since humans first started cutting them down

Axe-wielding Man fells half the world’s trees – leaving us just 422 each

However, the number of trees may be eight times higher than previously thought
60 years of Scalextric: Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones

60 years of Scalextric

Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones