Norwich City must cut out the self-inflicted blows warns Chris Hughton

Norwich City striker Gary Hooper cuts a dejected figure in a 2-1 Premier League defeat at Cardiff City. Picture by Tom Smith/Focus Images Ltd Norwich City striker Gary Hooper cuts a dejected figure in a 2-1 Premier League defeat at Cardiff City. Picture by Tom Smith/Focus Images Ltd

Monday, February 3, 2014
7:15 AM

Chris Hughton warned his Norwich City players to wise up after gifting Cardiff City a Premier League lifeline.

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"The feeling is one of anger and we are hurting. How we didn’t win that game I really don’t know."

Chris Hughton

The Canaries had frustrated a restless home crowd for the first 50 minutes and were good value for Robert Snodgrass’ opening salvo before imploding inside 80 seconds on the restart as first Craig Bellamy and debutant Kenwyne Jones pounced. Cardiff keeper David Marshall then moved centre stage to frustrate his previous employers, much like the corresponding league fixture at Carrow Road, to thwartNorwich’s frantic efforts to repair two self-inflicted wounds.

“We know Cardiff have not had the best of times but you can’t afford to make the mistakes we made because it gave them the lift,” said Hughton. “When you give away the two goals we did it changed the whole atmosphere in the stadium. It is always frustrating when you concede any goal but the manner was so tough to take. We know this can be an intimidating place but the crowd were fairly quiet and that was down to the effect we had on the game.

“We conceded two poor goals in a match where I felt in the first half we were comfortable enough being the away side. The players are whole-hearted and want to do well and they will try things and unfortunately for us we made errors in the wrong area of the pitch and it cost us. We made mistakes for the goals that I didn’t see that in the first period. The statistics will show our dominance in certain areas of the pitch but we conceded poor goals at a poor time because it gave them the lift they needed right after half-time.”

Norwich’s troubles in the final third merely compounded their defensive abdication.

“The feeling is one of anger and we are hurting. How we didn’t win that game I really don’t know,” said Hughton. “You have to score goals and we couldn’t manage it. If that final pass had been a little better we might have been able to capitalise on that with another goal (in the first half).

“What we did do after such a knock was respond very well after that. Their goalkeeper, as he did at Carrow Road, made some superb saves and if you thought he was good here he was outstanding earlier in the season. We hit the woodwork and we had a couple disallowed. Once we gathered ourselves again I genuinely felt we would get the equaliser and hopefully the winner.”

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer reacted to Norwich’s growing first half control by introducing Manchester United loanee Wilfried Zaha to devastating effect. The highly-rated midfielder was heavily involved in both home goals. Hughton elected to make a triple substitution for the final 15 minutes but the Canaries’ boss dismissed suggestions he should have been more proactive.

“You have to try and get yourself back in the game and even when we made the substitutions we were very much pushing forward and getting balls into the box,” he said. “If you make the substitutions too early and you can disrupt that flow. We were not playing badly. Cardiff changed it to a degree by bringing on Zaha and I felt they also got a bit more direct into Kenwyne Jones.

“Zaha is a good player on the ball and he gave them a little bit of a different dimension, but on the break we always looked a threat. I felt we were comfortable in the first half and on the break we were very good.”

10 comments

  • We should have won both games against Cardiff this season. Two inspired performances by Marshall have cost us 5 points. Literally, if he had not been in such good form we would be on 29 points today! Amazing margins this season that will likely cost us come the end of the season. Everyone keeps saying our last 4 games are not winnable, but Fulham are the team we play before that and we just don't seem to be able to ever beat them. A simple look at the fixture list shows that, under Hughton, we won't pick up more that 10 points I believe. A change should have been made weeks ago and I think (hope) the board would realise this now. Only an impact manager will save us now. My choice would be Zola or Lennon. The change needs to be before the Man City game as we are unlikely to get anything from that one. Act NOW please board. You must realise that it is the ONLY option otherwise championship football here we come.

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    PAG

    Monday, February 3, 2014

  • It's too late now, we should have cut out these 'self-inflicted blows' 18 long months ago. Things have steadily declined under CH and now we're in a sinking ship that's taking on water fast. We needed to act much earlier if we hoped to survive this season and yet nothing has been done to stem the tide. A message to the board: inaction is still an action!

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    Powers1902

    Monday, February 3, 2014

  • The fact is that the majority of goals we have conceded this season have been poor. Their first was unbelievably so following yet another defensive gaff after we squared a ball across the edge of our own area! Bennet, statuesque like, simply watched the ball roll by him when a good old fashioned boot up field was needed. We make the simplest things look very hard sometimes. Relinquish Bassong of the Captaincy CH so that he can then fully concentrate on the defensive line.

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    Mellow_Yellow

    Monday, February 3, 2014

  • More platitudinous piffle from our purveyor of pathos. He is the biggest self-inflicted blow imaginable. These players should be released from their shackles, Hughton & Cronies should be `released` by the Club. Throw Neil Adams, and anybody he fancies to help him, in at the deep end. Surely it cannot be worse than this anaemic régime? It was Worthingtonism at its worst when we defended deep instead of battering an inferior team, whose spirits were lifted by an inspired (and timely) substitution. "Zaha is a good player on the ball and he gave them a little bit of a different dimension". "Got a bit more direct into Kenwyne Jones". Good observation, Hughton, but have you LEARNED anything? We have Redmond, but we have nobody like Kenwyne Jones. Unless Becchio is - but how will we ever find out? Hughton is a "Voyeur Manager"; watching, and feebly admiring, what others do while doing nothing. Genoeg is genoeg. Gek Brouwer :-((

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    Mad Brewer

    Monday, February 3, 2014

  • Years ago there used to be comedy series on the TV but now we have a long running one here with the three stoogies unable to steer the ship anywhere but downwards like a submarine! Week after week the same feeble excuses are trotted out, if the players are that good why can the coaching staff not motivate them better? Do they all have a picture of a goal so that if they get near one they will recognise it? This has to be a better farce than the old Whitehall farces that Brian Rix used to star in! Get rid of the lot of them and bring in this year's panto cast!

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    blackdog2

    Monday, February 3, 2014

  • Get rid of him for goodness sake.

    Report this comment

    VictorM

    Monday, February 3, 2014

  • cut out the self inflicted blows err like keeping you as manager, playing elmander instead of redmond, taking hooper off with 10 minutes to go against newcastle not even starting him against liverpool away etc etc

    Report this comment

    citizen

    Monday, February 3, 2014

  • How long have you been saying this, you have been in charge the best part of two seasons, I you are in capable of correcting the shocking performances and self inflicted mistakes step aside for some that can. However like most other realistic people supporters I know it's too late , we have you til the end of the season and we are doomed. Even with a new man in he has limited time to correct your mess.

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    Burglecut

    Monday, February 3, 2014

  • "cut out the self inflicted blows.." !!!!????!!! That's it , is it? Professional players need to be told this do they? They are not school kids on a Thursday afternoon games lesson! That's the main thrust of your coaching input? There is no hope left and we are relegated as of now. Start preparations for an extended period in the Championship, or lower.

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    kenfoggo

    Monday, February 3, 2014

  • Bottom line is we have lower-mid table players and a $h!te manager.

    Report this comment

    Mad Brewer

    Monday, February 3, 2014

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

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