Hull City manager Steve Bruce has claimed that his side deserved the goalless draw at Arsenal on Saturday (20 February), but admitted the replay will create a fixture pile up. Bruce said the game underlined the depth of the Hull squad, singling out the impressive performance of goalkeeper Eldin Jakupović and the display of 16-year-old Josh Tymon for particular praise.
The manager made ten changes to his line-up for the trip to the Emirates Stadium, with only Curtis Davies remaining from the side who drew against Brighton on Tuesday. But The Tigers still managed to hold the Premier League giants to a goalless draw thanks to a good defensive display and the impressive performance of reserve goalkeeper Jakupovic.
Bruce praised the team spirit, while confirming the Tigers are yet to know when they will play the replay.
"I don't know when we're going to play [the replay]. That's added to the fixture pile-up we've got. We made 10 changes and we rode our luck a bit, but the team deserved it for the spirit and the 100% effort they gave. It bodes well when I see the strength in depth we've got, because we're going to need it," he said to BBC.
Bruce paid a special tribute to Jakupović and Tymon, with the former making a string of saves to force the replay and the latter having a solid display at the Emirates Stadium in his second start for the club.
"Eldin [Jakupovic] has come in and he's produced some great saves and we're delighted for him because there have been some dark moments over the past couple of years," the boss said about the keeper's performance.
"Josh Tymon didn't look out of his depth and it's great to see someone from the academy, from Hull, come in and wear the shirt. Let's hope we can have the rub of the green up at our place."