July 30 2014 Latest news:
Wednesday, May 21, 2014
Chris Hughton has reiterated his belief he would have kept Norwich City in the Premier League if he had not been sacked last month.
A run of 12 points from 13 games and seven successive defeats away from Carrow Road brought Hughton’s City tenure to an end on April 6, 24 hours after a home defeat to West Brom.
Under-18s manager Neil Adams took charge with five games to go – four of them now famously difficult – and City picked up one point, seeing them relegated from the top flight by three points plus goal difference.
“With five games to go and with five points clear of the relegation zone, even with a difficult run of games I was still very confident that we would have got the points that we needed,” said Hughton, reiterating the statement he made through the League Managers’ Association shortly after his sacking.
“It’s always easy in hindsight but all I can say is that I have always been very confident and was always very confident.”
Now the 55-year-old is looking to get back into work – Hughton is currently the narrow bookmakers’ favourite for the vacancy at West Bromwich Albion.
“It’s very difficult to not go and watch football,” said Hughton. “I went to some four or five games in that period of time (at the end of last season) but you do have to make sure that you use that break very well.
“I am very keen to get back in as soon as possible and hopefully when that opportunity arises you have got to make sure that you are ready for it.”
Hughton’s City fate may well have been sealed by a difficult season for his record signing last summer, striker Ricky van Wolfswinkel – who cost an initial £8.5m, but was unable to add to his opening day equaliser against Everton for the rest of the campaign.
Hughton added: “He was someone who suffered with a toe injury during the season and then struggled with his form and with his confidence, but I’m sure he will bounce back.”