Alex Tettey urges Norwich City’s players to ease the Premier League burden on Chris Hughton
- Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd
Alex Tettey is adamant those who question Chris Hughton's passion or his ability to inspire Norwich City's troops are wide of the mark.
Hughton rarely betrays any visible signs of emotion on the touchline or in the immediate aftermath of Premier League games, but his Norwegian enforcer insists the heart-on-the-sleeve antics of bosses like ex-Black Cats' chief Paolo Di Canio are over-rated as a managerial aid.
'I don't believe in managers' shouting,' said Tettey. 'He is always showing passion when we start the game and at the end in the dressing room so I don't know what more people want. It is not going to help us as players if he is screaming and shouting - that is not going to have an effect. He can have a say on how he wants the players to go about things tactically, but he has picked his 11 to be on the field and it is the players who have the responsibility to pass the ball and run. The manager made some changes last week and if he feels he needs to make that many that is up to him. Personally I can say the 11 out there (at Southampton) did not perform well enough. It is up to the ones who come in to perform better.'
Tettey speaks with the same honesty he displays in patrolling central midfield. The 27-year-old accepts there is compelling evidence to question the lack of leadership within Hughton's squad after imploding so graphically at both Villa Park and on the south coast in recent times.
'I don't think you can argue about that,' he said. 'We have John (Ruddy), we have Seb (Bassong) and we have players who have played in the Premier League. We have voices in the team and when things are going wrong those players have to maybe come forward more, but it is also about the whole team and maybe not one or two or three individuals. I agree that we have to have people who say, 'Hey, come together we must do this now,' in the difficult moments but we have a captain and a vice-captain on the field.'
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Tettey admitted it has been a tough week after that Saints' loss with the central midfielder quick to acknowledge his personal culpability for the fourth goal after a costly slip deep in stoppage time.
'I apologised after the game but some of the players were even saying I shouldn't apologise. It happens and there was nothing to do about it,' he said. 'Our intentions were to go there and press them high and win the ball to create something, but it didn't happen. The last two goals we scored, that was what we were supposed to do during the entire game so that was why we were so disappointed afterwards. We wanted to go there and show a good level of form and there was something wrong that day. Credit to Southampton, they were good on the ball. They scored an early goal and they had the confidence to play well. This week we have been working hard to turn the disappointment into something good on Saturday.'
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Tettey can expect a key role against Sunderland in the continuing injury absence of Leroy Fer. The Norwegian has suffered his own bouts of frustration on the sidelines this season after ankle surgery ruled him out for three months before he avoided another potential lay-off in a painful collision with Stoke's Jon Walters that earned the ex-Ipswich man a red card last time out at home.
'It wasn't a nice challenge but I was told by Wes (Hoolahan) he didn't mean to go in that hard. I am done with that. I was a little bit scared how it was straight afterwards but now it is fine,' said Tettey. 'Football is a contact sport and you have to accept you get injured. I just want to stay fit now because I am fed up of injuries. I want to be around for selection and do my best for the team.'