Steve Bruce feels both Hull City and Cardiff City will be eyeing up Saturday’s clash at the KC Stadium as an opportunity to bag three important Barclays Premier League points.
A first ever top flight meeting between the two sides puts the two best teams from last season’s Championship head-to-head in the elite league and Bruce admits this is the type of game that is crucial to both sides.
“These are types of games that will define our season and Cardiff will be saying the same thing themselves,” said Bruce.
“They will have marked this down as a fixture that they think they can get something from. We’re against a side that we think is going to be around us in the table and if you can turn those sides over, it’s a big feather in your cap and helps enormously.
“It’s a big game for us at home. It’ll be harder than our last game as well because nobody expected us to do anything against Manchester City. The way we played there delighted me because we took part in the game.
“It’s important that we play with that same freedom (against Cardiff) and that we express ourselves and go and play. Once you start getting nervous and edgy, it doesn’t do anybody any good.
“That was how we tackled the Championship last season and it’s what we want to try and do in the Premier League this year. We want to play without the fear and go out there and have a go.
“I’ve been encouraged by how we’ve played so far, but I’m also aware that we’ve only just started and played three games. The expectation from two of those three was zero and we’ve been able to play with a freedom.
“But we’ve played very well and I hope that can continue. I’m encouraged but there’s a long way to go.
“Cardiff won the Championship at a canter last season and they’ve added to their squad very well. They’re going to be difficult to beat, so will Newcastle next week and then West Ham. They’re all difficult games, but the way we’ve started has encouraged us and if we can keep playing that way, it would be terrific.”