Jonny Howson: Norwich City deserved a draw from Newcastle United encounter
Jonny Howson believes Norwich City deserved a point for their efforts at Newcastle on Sunday afternoon – but won't let a fourth defeat in five games dampen spirits.
Senegalese marksman Papiss Ciss� produced a poacher's effort on 11 minutes that proved enough for Alan Pardew's Magpies to take all three points – the hosts' first win in five matches as they aim to secure European football at St James' Park next season.
The Canaries, whose last win came at Swansea in February, had their chances to take at least a draw from what proved to be an even contest.
But Newcastle held on and Howson, who made only his second appearances – and start – since moving from Leeds in January, feels there are plenty of plus points to be taken from their ultimately fruitless trip north.
'It was a tough one in the end,' admitted the 23-year-old, who missed last weekend's Carrow Road draw with Wigan through illness. 'I think we deserved at least a point out of it but sometimes you don't get what you deserve in football and today is one of those for us. We are disappointed in the result, but in the performance I think we can be extremely pleased with large spells of it.
'The bottom line and what we are always wanting is some points to take away, and we haven't got that. But sometimes you look at the positives and there were large spells of that game we can take positives from.
'There are no easy games in this league, from the short time that I have spent here I can see that, and today is no different. But in future if we can learn from the little mistakes we made, we can take that into the next game and we might be able to grind out a point.'
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It was a game of few clear cut chances but both sides had their moments.
City goalkeeper John Ruddy produced an outstanding fingertip save to turn Demba Ba's flick around his far post in the first half, while highly rated United stopper Tim Krul's reactions were superb after the break as he tipped over Zak Whitbread's close range header that looked certain to bring Norwich level.
'They have obviously got their goal and the one in the first half where John has pulled off a great save, but after that you can't think of a right lot of chances they have had,' said Howson. 'We have had a few chances and myself, I hit one just over and Surs (Andrew Surman) has had a couple. There was the save from Zak's header and a handball shout (for a penalty) in there from a corner too.
'Newcastle are a good side and they have got a good following here, but I think we were unlucky and we can be pleased with this performance.'
City's last win, over Swansea, saw them eighth in the table and set for a second season of Premier League football – Norwich's gap to the relegation places is 14 points having played one game more that QPR in 18th. And Howson denied there will be any lack of belief or confidence at Colney this week as Paul Lambert's men prepare for the visit of free-falling Wolves on Saturday.
'It is relentless – looking from the outside as I've only been here since January, the lads have been brilliant all season and they have just taken each game at a time,' added Howson.
'Whenever there is a defeat, I've noticed the lads don't drop their heads. They just keep working hard on the training ground and vice versa when they've had a win. Nothing changes and it's a good mentality to have, just to keep working the same way whatever.
'Wolves are on a pretty horrible run but there are good players in every team in this league and no easy games. We saw that when Wigan came.
'But they are good sides, every team in this league, and you can't let your foot off the gas at times. You have just got to keep working hard and putting in the same performances, and if we just take it each game at a time, we will see where we end up.'