Michael Turner reflects on the only option left for Norwich City following their latest Fulham heartbreak
11:57 13 April 2014
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There is one silver lining in those four remaining games for Norwich City – they’ve prevented the Canaries being relegated again from the Premier League with defeat at Craven Cottage.
For some, that may only be an argument over the details – because the cup-final atmosphere on the banks of the River Thames certainly left the feeling that Premier League survival was only on offer to the victor on Saturday.
But while there are games, there is hope. That’s not really a choice of attitude. It’s the only option left.
It probably explained Michael Turner’s relative understatement when it came to the post-match chat.
“It’s fair to say that we are a little bit down after that,” said the returning City centre-back. “Everyone knew this was a crucial game for us and we’ve come away with nothing.
“But we need to pick each other up and we’ve got four games to go, so we need to give all we can to do what we can to get to our goal, which is to stay in the league.”
Those four fixtures probably roll off the tongue of any football fan, given how long eyes have been cast over them. The visit from Liverpool to Carrow Road on Easter Sunday, before City take on trips to Manchester United and Chelsea, and that last-day arrival of an Arsenal side, who we now know will have an FA Cup final to look forward to the following weekend. All those will of course now be taken on under the stewardship of Neil Adams, which makes them far more of an unknown quantity.
Adams put faith in handing Turner his first action since injuring his hamstring at Crystal Palace on New Year’s Day – and Turner has faith that City showed promise, even if it did come with a possibly catastrophic result.
“I think we dominated possession and in the first half, without doubt, we were the ones who had the better chances,” added Turner.
“But we obviously gave away a sloppy goal from a free-kick, which is very disappointing from our point of view. And then again in the second half, I think we dominated possession without really creating enough chances to hurt them.
“It’s up to us now to go again.”
There were definitely changes to approach – and changes to the changes, as Adams aimed to make an impression from the bench as Chris Hughton’s successor.
But the same frailties of failing to recover from going behind – or to take a chance – cost City once again.
“We definitely believed we could come here and get something,” added Turner. “Even at 1-0 down we were confident we could get back into it – even with all the problems we’ve had doing that this season.
“The manager has done a great job coming in, having three or four training sessions to come in and get across the way he wants us to play, and I think we’ve done that pretty well. It showed with the possession we had. But obviously the result is key and in the end, we have come away with nothing.”