Hull boss Leonid Slutsky believes the club’s fans should look at other forms of protesting after they showed their frustrations at the ownership of Assem Allam by throwing tennis balls onto the pitch during their 3-2 home defeat to Nottingham Forest.
Fans protested before kick-off and then during the match as their annoyance at the Egyptian’s reluctance to sell the club spilled onto the pitch in the first half, with a section of the supporters throwing balls while chanting “We want Allam out”, stopping play for several minutes.
The match was goalless at that point but Forest took the lead just 10 minutes after the delay through Kieran Dowell’s unstoppable 25-yard drive and the Russian admitted he struggles with the logic behind the ball-throwing action.
“For me, (it is) very difficult to understand,” Slutsky said. “I don’t know a lot about the situation but this type of protest, for me, supporters must support the team.
“I am very thankful for our supporters – every match, unbelievable support. But when the match stops for five to seven minutes, I don’t think it is the best action.
“I know why (the fans are protesting) but I didn’t understand why this type of protest, (or) what it means, like balls on the pitch.”
The Tigers found themselves further behind when Dowell netted his second just after the hour mark before top goalscorer Jarrod Bowen grabbed his eighth goal of the campaign to halve the deficit.
However, Dowell restored the two-goal advantage and completed his hat-trick six minutes from time when he slotted in a spot-kick and although Michael Hector ensured a grandstand finish with Hull’s second in the 87th minute, the visitors held on.
“We played really right, maybe some mistakes on the last pass but, of course, when we concede the goal, we must play more actively in this situation but the same plan continues,” Slutsky added.
“We had a lot of chances, in the first half, in the second half, and of course if we equalised when the score was 1-0, it would be much easier for us because it is 1-1 and new game.
“I don’t have any problems with character of players, with team spirit but I think we made (too many) mistakes. The first problem, for me, is we didn’t score first and we missed our chances – but we had a lot of chances.”
Forest boss Mark Warburton also commented on the protests during the game, stating he believed neither side let it affect their flow.
“It’s not for me to comment on the fans,” he said. “The game is about the fans and however they voice their opinion they do it, but it’s not for the other clubs to talk about.
“From our point of view you have to deal with it. It was a stoppage and both teams maintained their focus and concentration and delivered a good game I think.”