April 16 2014 Latest news:
, Norwich City Writer
Wednesday, December 4, 2013
Chris Hughton admitted Norwich’s soft centre again contributed to their downfall as Luis Suarez inspired Liverpool to a 5-1 Premier League win on Wednesday night at Anfield.
Suarez turned in a stunning display to sink the Canaries in a four-goal salvo capped by a stunning 35-yard half-volley over John Ruddy to open the floodgates, but Hughton was left to rue the second gifted by the visitors. Norwich were again found badly wanting at a corner in a repeat of their recent defeat at Newcastle and Hughton conceded that proved the killer blow.
It is a soft goal, a really soft goal,” he said. “You set your team up and players have responsibilities from set plays. You have to hope they are both resilient and disciplined enough to stay with men. That was the one that really hurt us. Most will look at the first goal, which I am sure will be replayed many times over, and think it was brilliance from Suarez rather than poor defending. I thought we started the game okay but the second hurts us and it makes it that much difficult.”
Hughton accepted the Uruguayan maestro was unplayable.
“He is a world class player but if you afford him that much space and time he is one person who has the ability to do what he did,” he said. “It has been a tough time for us dealing with him in recent games. I am more disappointed that we gave him the opportunities which he gratefully took for someone of his ability. My overriding feeling is we could have done more. I look at the first goal and not many can score that type of goal. He can, but there are not many others.”
Hughton opted to leave Gary Hooper out of his starting line up with Johan Elmander deployed up front in place of the club’s Crystal Palace match-winner.
“We have got a game on Saturday and two tough ones this week,” he said. “I decided to go with a 4-3-3 and Gary is certainly someone who performs better with a player alongside him and you can use that link. I felt Johan would give us more running on beyond and I wanted us to try and stretch them.”
Liverpool chief Brendan Rodgers revealed he had felt sorry for the City defence as Suarez ran riot.
“I really did feel for the Norwich defenders,” he said. “When you come up against a world class player it is very difficult to contain that and when he has lads supporting him like (Philippe) Countinho and (Steven) Gerrard it is tough. I haven’t seen many individual performances as good as that. It was sheer brilliance. It was a joy for me to watch the team tonight. I thought technically we were very good. To witness that individual performance was remarkable. I always like to talk about the team but I think you have to hold up Luis tonight. He is one of the best strikers in the world and that is an incredible performance. You could go through his goals and don’t forget his assists. The Ronaldo’s and the Gareth Bale’s and the Messi’s it is all about their numbers. You look at Suarez the goals he scores. He is probably the happiest he has been here right now. The maturity in his performances, he wants to train every day and I think this club suits him perfectly and his best years are going to be here. He has that connection wit the supporters. It is a hand in glove fit for him.”