March 11 2014 Latest news:
Paddy Davitt, Norwich City Writer
Saturday, December 28, 2013
Chris Hughton was adamant Norwich City deserved much more than a second festive home Premier League defeat after Manchester United substitute Danny Welbeck proved the difference at Carrow Road with a coolly-taken 57th minute winner.
City were unable to find a way past David De Gea in a positive first half and paid a heavy price when Welbeck rounded John Ruddy after gathering Ryan Bennett’s attempted clearance which had ricocheted back into the England striker’s path.
“It feels really sickening. It is a game we didn’t deserve to lose. I thought we were magnificent right throughout game,” said Hughton. “Their winner was a fortuitous goal with the double deflection which ran into the path of Danny Welbeck. When that falls to someone like him you are almost expecting him to score. That was the only difference between the two teams. I thought we were better over the 90 minutes, we got into better positions and better areas.
“Our organisation was excellent and we had some good chances. On the balance of play, defeat is a tough one to take. So many aspects of our game today were very good. But goals win games, and their goal was fortunate. That is the game. When you have your best period you have to try and capitalise on it and we didn’t do that and with the changes and the quality they can bring on you know what could happen. But even in the second half I thought we were good. They threatened on the counter.”
Hughton confirmed Gary Hooper was withdrawn as a precautionary measure in the second period after complaining of a tightness in his leg at the interval - a decision which sparked a predictably hostile reaction from the majority within Carrow Road.
“He flagged it up at half-time and that was a precaution from us,” he said. “We have a lot of games in this period and we have to look at the bigger picture. It was an injury precaution. He is fine. Just a little bit of tightness that he flagged up. I understand the fans’ frustration at that point because he had scored in four of our last home games. They weren’t aware of the whole story and I am quite sure if they were the reaction would have been different, but I had no problem with that.”