English Premier League side Hull City are to change their name to Hull City Tigers, owner Assem Allam said in an interview published today, explaining that the new title would make the club stand out.
"Hull City is irrelevant," the Egyptian-born businessman was quoted as saying by local newspaper the Hull Daily Mail. "My dislike for the word 'City' is because it is common. City is also associated with Leicester, Bristol, Manchester and many other clubs.
"I don't like being like everyone else. I want the club to be special. It is about identity. City is a lousy identity. Hull City Association Football Club is so long."
Allam said that changing the name by which the Yorkshire club have been known since their formation in 1904 would take effect from the start of the new season, which starts on 17 August. In the meantime, references to "AFC" on club branding would be phased out, said Allam, who took over the club in 2010 after they were relegated from England's top division and invested heavily.
He added that shorter names worked better commercially and the club would be marketed locally as "Hull City Tigers" and "Hull Tigers" nationally and internationally. But Allam's son and club vice-chairman Ehab Allam conceded that they could not force fans to use the new name.