(Reuters) - Hull City’s final two Premier League games are equivalent to Champions League finals as the club fight to avoid relegation, on-loan defender Andrea Ranocchia has said ahead of Sunday’s encounter against Crystal Palace.
Hull’s 2-0 loss to Sunderland last week left them one point adrift of safety in 18th position and they travel to 16th-placed Palace, who are four points ahead, before hosting second-placed Tottenham Hotspur in their last game.
“We’ve got two games to play and they are the equivalent of two Champions League finals,” Ranocchia told the club’s website. (www.hullcitytigers.com)
“They’re not normal matches. They are matches of huge importance and we have to look to take six points and work as hard as we possibly can to make that happen.”
Swansea City, who are 17th in the table, face Sunderland on Saturday and victory for the Swans would give them a four-point lead over Hull and make Sunday’s game against Palace a must-win encounter for the Tigers.
“We have worked hard in training throughout the week and we will be working as hard as we possibly can to get the result we want and need at Palace on Sunday,” Ranocchia said.
“We have to go there and win... it’s as simple as that. It’s a big game this weekend. Crystal Palace also need a result themselves, but we have to go there and show that we want it more than they do.”
Hull City were promoted to the league from the Championship at the beginning of this season. Middlesbrough and Sunderland have already been relegated.
Reporting by Aditi Prakash in Bengaluru