Chris Hughton hails a ‘big’ moment in Norwich City’s season after Crystal Palace Premier League 1-0 win

Norwich City's Wes Hoolahan and Gary Hooper enjoyed combining for the Canaries' winner against Cryst

Norwich City's Wes Hoolahan and Gary Hooper enjoyed combining for the Canaries' winner against Crystal Palace. Picture by Paul Chesterton/Focus Images - Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

Chris Hughton admitted beating Crystal Palace felt like a 'big' moment in Norwich City's Premier League season.

Gary Hooper's 30th minute strike secured a vital three points that moved Hughton's depleted squad four points clear of the bottom three after a fraught afternoon at Carrow Road.

'It was much-needed. I think on the back of not a bad performance at Newcastle but conceding two poor goals that left a bad taste,' said Hughton. 'We were at home against a team around is in the table and with a new manager who had played well in their last two games. It felt like a big win. Gary is getting stronger and fitter and it was difficult for us and him that he missed the opening four or five weeks when you want new players to be bedding in but I thought overall his contribution was good and I was really pleased for him. Strikers want to score goals and he has managed that in the past two home games.'

Hughton also reserved a special word of praise for the recalled Wes Hoolahan who sparked the hosts on his first Premier League start since the opening day 2-2 draw at home to Everton in a wider midfield role, with Norwich missing the likes of injured trio Anthony Pilkington, Robert Snodgrass and Elliott Bennett.

'We had to make changes and with our squad that is not as easy as it is for some other clubs,' said Hughton. 'It was a big blow for us to lose Pilkington and Snodgrass last week. You have to try and adjust the best way you can but we have good competition in the squad but when you can bring in Wes who has not effectively played this season and he puts in the performance he did it says a lot.

'I chose to play him in a narrower wide channel even though we know centrally is his best position. This season we have looked at other options and that has generally been playing two strikers. I looked at last season and felt where we could have made life easier for ourselves is by at least trying to turn those draws into wins. It has been tough for Wes but the feeling we have here about him does not change. He is a super player.'

Most Read