The 8 most frustrating teams to support in Britain right now
4. Hull City
The term ‘yo-yo club’ is rarely used in a complimentary context, but Hull fans must wish it applied to them. These days the Tigers are more like a broken yo-yo, dangling above the Championship drop zone for the majority of last season and now struggling to find any upward momentum in the opening months of the current campaign.
To compare Hull to the aforementioned stringed toy would imply that they were destined to ping their way back to the top flight at the earliest opportunity following their latest relegation in May 2017. But the promotion campaigns of 2008, 2013 and 2016 almost feel like they happened to a different club.
Hull’s relationship with the top flight has always been an uncomfortable one. They made a decent fist of it under Marco Silva in 2017, but a 4-0 loss to Crystal Palace on the penultimate weekend of the season completed their hat-trick of Premier League relegations. Another demotion could follow in 2018/19 - although this time it's League One that looms.
Back in 2010, Chesterfield were moving into a new 10,000 all-seater stadium and boldly setting their sights on the Championship. Since then, however, it’s been a torrid saga featuring budgetary woes, a boardroom walkout, a spree of unsuccessful managerial appointments and, finally, relegation to non-league football for the first time in their history at the end of last season.
The Spireites have a proud history and were competing in the League One play-offs under Paul Cook only three years ago, losing out to Preston in the semi-finals. In 2014, they were in the Johnstone's Paint Trophy final at Wembley, losing to Peterborough. Their supporters can only dream of the days when play-off defeats were the worst kind of heartache they had to endure.
Before the current campaign began, Chesterfield fans were hoping to see their team launch a bid for the National League title. Instead, they're currently languishing in 19th place in the table, a whopping 24 points behind leaders Wrexham.
Hibernian’s cup final hoodoo came to a spectacular end in 2016, when Dave Gray’s stoppage-time header brought a 3-2 win over Rangers in the Scottish Cup showpiece. With it, they sealed the trophy for the first time since 1902. It was a day that will live long in the memory of Hibs fans, but the club still has work to do before it can cast off the ‘big-game bottlers’ tag permanently.
Historically, few teams have managed to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory quite as often. Prior to their 2016 success under Alan Stubbs, they had accrued the worst cup final record of any Scottish team since the 19th century, winning just five of 23 Scottish Cup and League Cup deciders.
Admittedly, Hibernian have gone from strength to strength since returning to the Scottish Premiership at the third time of asking, and current boss Neil Lennon has built a side with enough quality to challenge the likes of Aberdeen and Rangers for second spot in the division.
In reality, though, successful times are almost as hard to stomach as perpetual failure at Easter Road because the club are still prone to ‘Hibsing it’ every so often. The most recent example was a crushing defeat by local rivals Hearts in the penultimate game of last season, a result which denied them the opportunity to stake a claim for the runners-up spot on the final day.
1. Stockport County
Manchester United fans who think being eclipsed by Manchester City gives them the right to throw their toys out of the pram should try supporting a team based less than 10 miles down the round.
It’s hard to believe that Stockport were playing their football one division above City as recently as 1998/99; since then, their fans have had to endure multiple relegations, administration following a spell of behind-the-scenes chaos, and even the loss of their professional status.
County dropped out of the Football League for the first time in their history in 2010/11, then slumped into the regionalised sixth tier of English football, the National League North. The north-west outfit have subsequently thrown down the gauntlet to the rest of non-league and publicised their ambition to return to League Two by 2020.
Unfortunately, though, it appears that not everyone at the club got the memo: Stockport are currently 10th in the National League North, 10 points behind current leaders Bradford Park Avenue.
So the next time you hear a United fan complaining about the state of their team, tell them to try sitting through 90 minutes at Edgeley Park on a freezing winter night...