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Tony Smith furiously speaks about respect

Hull FC Head Coach Tony Smith claps

After starting the season with wins over Leeds Rhinos and Castleford Tigers, Hull FC looked set for a big season but then would lose seven games in a row.

The Black and Whites are now missing out on the play offs meaning their last play off game a defeat to Wigan Warriors in the semi final in 2020.

The Black and Whites are set for a rebuild and Tony Smith spoke on this to BBC Radio Humberside:

“We’ve had a number of occasions where a number of our senior players haven’t been available. That’s something that we’d like to improve on and address for next year.

“Having them in better form as well, there’s some things that certainly need to improve here as we can’t finish at this part of the table and not have things to improve.

“We’ve got plenty of things that we need to improve and we’ll address some of those during the off-season. We are changing some personnel as well, both on and off the field, if that needs to happen too.

“I’d be happy to talk in more detail about some of that at the end of the season. We’re still in our seasons and we need to focus on what we’re doing now and not worry too much about next season also.

“I think that can be a distraction and it is. It has been for some, not all, but I think it has been a distraction for some. That has an effect on the results and performances.

“So I think definitely managing some of that, both from the club’s point of view, but also with some individuals. Some have handled it really well and some haven’t. So there’s some of those sort of distractions that happen throughout the year.”

He also addressed whether the club’s recent past could have impacted them:

“Possibly. I’m no psychologist, but when you’re told that’s what happens, sometimes you start to believe it. It becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy sometimes, or even the subconscious takes over.

“Some of our result last week was affected by the players trying too hard to get the monkey off their back about finishing the season not so well. I think they overdid it.

“They made some errors in last week’s game because they were trying too hard to push things to get out of the situation where people can say to them that they ain’t getting a slump at this time of the year.

“I’m not looking for sympathy for them, I just think that’s the reality of it. So yeah, there’s a whole lot of things that we just need to focus on this week, this game, and not let those things become performance related.”

Asked about whether getting rid of some their current stars would change this, he was adamant about the fact he is respectful of his current squad:

“Listen, I’m very respectful of the players that we’ve got here and had here and what they’ve contributed. Once again, I’m not being critical of them. I think they’ve tried too hard at times.”

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