Hull City manager Steve Bruce has admitted that his decision to sell striker Shane Long to Southampton last summer could come back to haunt him and the club, the Daily Mirror has reported.
The Irishman moved to the KC Stadium from West Bromwich Albion in January 2014 for £7m and scored four goals in 17 appearances, but he was allowed to leave Hull after just seven months, with Bruce deeming Southampton’s £12m offer as one that was too good to refuse.
Without Long, Hull have struggled for the majority of the season in the Premier League, and they are now perilously placed just one position and two points above the bottom three with a difficult run-in. That sequence begins with a visit to Southampton, where Long is expected to start against his former club.
With the £12m received for Long, Hull added more depth to their squad in the final hours of the summer transfer window, adding Mohamed Diame and record signing Abel Hernandez to their squad as well as loanees Hatem Ben Arfa and Gaston Ramirez, but Bruce concedes he may regret his decision to sell the 28-year-old should they lose their battle against relegation.
He said: “Shane came in and did fantastically well. He gave us a spark just when we needed it. But, in management, you have to make decisions and, at the time, with the money we got for him, it enabled us to go out and strengthen the squad. We needed that and we were able to sign three or four players on deadline day and add that strength in depth, which has seen us through the unbelievable injury problems we’ve had this season.
“At the time, it was a terrific offer. I made the decision that it was too good to turn down for the benefit of the club. But I’ve also been in this game long enough to know that things like this can come back to bite you on the backside.’
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