Tony Smith addresses Hull FC future after ’embarrassing’ derby defeat

TONY SMITH says he’s at Hull FC for the long haul after another “embarrassing” display in Good Friday’s derby.

His side trailed Hull KR 28-0 after an abject first half and fell to an eventual 34-10 loss at the home of their rivals.

It came after back-to-back heavy defeats at the hands of Leigh and Huddersfield – who they face again this Saturday at the MKM Stadium – and extended their record this year to just one win from seven in all competitions.

“I’m here to help this club turn around,” said coach Smith after the defeat to his former club.

“I love projects. I don’t like all parts of it and don’t enjoy the hard parts of it and the days like today. 

“I’ve got to set the example. It’s tough at the moment. Every job I’ve been in has its tough times. Keep working hard, you get through it and you come out stronger. There’s no other shortcut.” 

Smith admitted his players are simply not “desperate” enough to defend at times.

“You’ve got to be desperate not to concede. You’ve got to be desperate not to allow breaks. You’ve got to be desperate to get the ball,” he added.

“We’re not in great form, so we’ve got to make sure we’re working hard for one another and we’re desperate to help each other. That’s the game of Rugby League. We’re still learning how to do that with each other.

“You’ve got to get angry and desperate before you get out there, otherwise the opposition will embarrass you, and they were embarrassing us. 

“We’ve got to face up to it. It’s the reality of where we are at the moment. Some of our defence isn’t good enough and when it isn’t good enough, you’re going to be embarrassed. 

“Stop it from happening by looking at it, learning from it, and taking that bad feeling and taste into next week.”

One of the very few positives for Hull came in the performance of halfback Jack Charles off the bench in his third senior appearance.

But Smith cautioned against expecting too much, too soon from the teenager as Hull search for a much-needed boost.

“We’ve got to look after Jack. He is young. We have to pick and choose when to use him and when to protect him.” added Smith.

“I’d like to be throwing him into a team in good form, rather than a team that’s not in good form. But he’s handling some of the challenges we’ve thrown at him so far.”