Chris Hughton insisted he was right to keep Gary Hooper in reserve for an hour after an injury-hit start to his Norwich City career.

To send a link to this page to a friend, you must be logged in.

The former Celtic striker made his Premier League debut for the club in the 63rd minute at Carrow Road and was only denied a goal by Brad Guzan’s athleticism in the final stages. Hughton conceded he had erred on the side of caution with Hooper’s recovery from injury.

“I thought about starting him but it is impossible not to be off the pace given the length of time he has been out,” he said. “He trained three and a half days before Tottenham and I just felt we needed a little bit more in terms of players up to speed and Johan (Elmander) was in that category. It was good for us to introduce Gary but I suppose that might be a mark of where he is. He had two chances in the game and certainly the one from the (Javier) Garrido cross you would feel that a Hooper fully up to speed puts that one away.”

Bradley Johnson was the latest regular to watch the matchday experience from the sidelines after missing only one Premier League game through suspension last season.

“Where we are right at this moment is that it is just as tough to make decisions about the bench as it is the starting line up,” said Hughton. “Bradley was one I decided to leave out of the 11 and then I had a choice between him and (Alex) Tettey as a central one and I must admit Alex has been a little bit unlucky for someone who did so well for us last season. He has been unfortunate not to play so it was purely tactical.”

Both could feature in tomorrow’s Capital One Cup tie at Watford, but Hughton faces a defensive dilemma as he awaits the full extent of Sebastien Bassong’s first-half hamstring injury against Villa.

“We’ll assess that one and hope it isn’t too bad,” he said. “He just felt it slightly. I’m looking forward to putting a team out in the cup tie and it is a game we will want to win.”

4 comments

  • Btw, reminds me of that game vs Bolton when Ayala went off shortly to be followed, rather keenly, by Whitbread. We ended up with E. Bennett @ RB with Cafu and Kyle `Grasshopper` Naughton @ CB. We went on to win 2-0, keeping one of only 3 clean-sheets that season!

    Report this comment

    Mad Brewer

    Monday, September 23, 2013

  • I think Hooper may well prove to be the best striker buy this summer as his movement is very sharpe and he looks hungry. The Woolf does not show quite the same desire for me right now. A bit disappointed to see the statement that Bassong slightly felt his hamstring, if that was the case, why did he simply walk off when we were under pressure at the back! Surely he could have seen out a few more seconds, or simply sat down on the pitch to encourage the ref to stop the game.

    Report this comment

    TrevorKeith

    Monday, September 23, 2013

  • I too fear that Bassong may be out for a fair few games, hence I would like to see Martin & Bennett tried as centre backs against Watford. Turner should be on the bench just in case it does not work then I would switch him for Bennett just to how how Martin plays with the "other" partner so to speak.

    Report this comment

    TrevorKeith

    Monday, September 23, 2013

  • I think these statements are meant to deflect rather than inform, TK. Hooper`s injury took a lot longer than expected to clear up, so let`s hope the Bassong one is only a `tweak`. The pessimist in me says it`s worse than that. Let`s hope not!

    Report this comment

    Mad Brewer

    Monday, September 23, 2013

The views expressed in the above comments do not necessarily reflect the views of this site

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

Homes24
Jobs24
Drive24
LocalSearch24
MyDate24
MyPhotos24
FamilyNotices24
Weddingsite

loading...

Classifieds, browse or search them online now

The Canary magazine
Order your copy of The Canary magazine

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT