Chris Hughton believes Chelsea humbling was turning point for Norwich City

Norwich City's heavy defeat at Chelsea prompted manager Chris Hughton to tighten his side up at the back. Norwich City's heavy defeat at Chelsea prompted manager Chris Hughton to tighten his side up at the back.

Saturday, November 17, 2012
12:00 PM

Chris Hughton has pinpointed Norwich City’s Premier League humbling at Chelsea as a critical point in the Canaries’ recent revival.

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City go into today’s daunting home test against Manchester United unbeaten in all competitions since a 4-1 pummelling at Stamford Bridge last month which sparked Hughton’s squad into affirmative action.

“We have certainly been more solid as a unit and sometimes that comes from a reaction; possibly that came after Chelsea when we conceded goals,” he said.

“Having said that, there will be a lot of teams who do concede goals at Chelsea this season. We looked for a reaction from that game and we have done a fair amount of work on the training pitch.

“If I look at the last few games we have been harder to break down. That is something I would want to continue because of the quality you are up against, but where you get the most satisfaction is setting up your team to win a game.

“We are going to concede goals. We are playing in such a tough league with so many good players. If you are winning 3-2 and you have set up your team to get a result there is a positive feeling, but certainly if you keep a clean sheet there is perhaps an even better feeling.”

City’s impressive upturn has brought eight Premier League points after a testing start to Hughton’s tenure.

“I think you are always concerned because you want to get points on the board, whether it is through a little bit of fortune or luck,” he said. “We were certainly playing well to pick up a few points at that stage. We know how tough it is to get results in this division. You are always thinking about your performances, always thinking about how you can improve it. What you can’t do is drive yourself mad because that is the game. I remember saying earlier in the season we hadn’t had any fortune. No deflected goals, no penalties. The margins are that small.

“Generally over a season it evens itself out and the league table doesn’t lie.

“You could say it takes time for players to get used to a new manager. It depends who you speak to. We were unfortunate in some early games, but we had three bad ones when we conceded goals.

“Sometimes it is just about a settled team and we now have real competition for places. If I look at the season overall we have had more decent performances than poor ones.”

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