Europa League: European exit saddens Bruce

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Steve Bruce has expressed his disappointment that Hull City will miss out some big European nights after they were knocked out by Lokeren.
The Tigers won the second leg of their Europa League play-off 2-1 thanks to a Robbie Brady brace, but they lost on away goals following a 1-0 defeat in Belgium last week.
For a club who had so relished the chance to taste continental competition and all it had to offer there is something oddly fitting in their departure on a technicality that has defined European football for so long.
“That’s European football…we’ve experienced it and what it’s all about, the frustrations, the disappointments, the away goal rule…,” said a rueful Bruce.
“To go out the way we did is the worst, away goals, but that’s the competition. That’s what playing in Europe is like.
“It’s a totally different ball game and we didn’t get to grips with it.
“To have had a big couple of European nights would have been terrific so it’s a shame.
“It would have been a great adventure for everyone concerned.
“We’ve won the match and gone out on the rule but if we’re being honest we didn’t play to the levels I expect.
“We made far too many mistakes, we gave the ball away far too cheaply in really good areas and four or five didn’t get to the level you would expect. That’s the disappointing thing for me, even though we won the game.
“It’s gone too quick for everyone but it’s not to be so we move on.”
Part of the moving on phase involves completing the transfer business Bruce had set in motion with half an eye on a gruelling group campaign.
Uruguay striker Abel Hernandez is close to coming in on a club record deal from Palermo.
The player has passed a medical and agreed terms and a work permit hearing on Friday should determine if the deal can go ahead.
“Things are advancing quickly, we have to get work permits and bits and pieces done but we’re trying hard,” said Bruce.
“The medical is okay, and personal terms, we just have to get through the red tape.
“There’s still one or two issues to be ironed out. We’ll see how we get on.”

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