‘We need this spirit and togetherness’ – Hernandez has summed up desire of Canaries
The attitude of super sub Onel Hernandez summed up the attitude which Daniel Farke has demanded from his Norwich City squad this season.
City’s tricky Cuban winger replaced Todd Cantwell in the 63rd minute of the Canaries’ dramatic Boxing Day tussle with Nottingham Forest with the visitors leading 1-0.
In little more than 10 minutes it was 3-0 and the hosts were staring down the barrel of a first defeat in 12 Championship matches, despite a host of chances.
Mario Vrancic gave City hope but it wasn’t until deep into injury-time that Hernandez was able to force the issue, getting slightly lucky with his first goal, before smashing home an equaliser in the 98th minute to spark memorable celebrations.
“I’m happy for each and every player when he shines in the spotlight as an individual, I’m totally pleased for Onel,” Farke said after the chaotic 3-3 draw.
“He’s delivering at the moment with his end product, it’s good for his self-confidence because he was also out for several periods during this season.
“But of course it is a big group thing as well because we won the ball back, played the passes and got the ball through to Onel, we created so many situations, so it was 100 percent a team effort.
“But Onel is also a sign of our way, that it is not so important if a player is there for 90 minutes, five minutes or ninety seconds, they give everything to fight together and this is important.”
Hernandez missed a month of the season due to hernia surgery and has been used sparingly recently due to a hamstring issue, but set up Teemu Pukki’s late winner at Blackburn before Christmas.
The 25-year-old’s brace against Forest has put him on five goals and six assists from 20 games for the season.
“You can’t win anything in football with just 11 lads,” Farke continued.
“You need 20 or 25 to buy into this spirit of the group and give everything when he is on the pitch, not annoyed that he is not in the starting line-up or much more involved.
“We need this spirit and togetherness, Onel is a really good sign for this so I’m totally pleased for him.”