Norwich City boss Chris Hughton explains Robert Snodgrass Brighton absence

Jonny Howson is congratulated by Nathan Redmond after the duo combined to put Norwich ahead in Tuesd

Jonny Howson is congratulated by Nathan Redmond after the duo combined to put Norwich ahead in Tuesday's 1-1 friendly draw at Brighton. Picture by Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd - Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

Norwich City boss Chris Hughton played down fresh speculation surrounding Robert Snodgrass' future after his absence from Tuesday night's latest 1-1 friendly draw at Brighton.

Hughton confirmed the Scottish international had missed the trip to the south coast due to a 'private' family matter following weekend reports that he was being tracked by Premier League rivals West Ham. Hughton reiterated again after watching his side in acton at the Amex that Snodgrass remains a key part of his plans for the new Premier League campaign. The former Leeds man could even return for Wednesday's friendly at Cambridge United, along with the likes of Wes Hoolahan who was also left out.

'It is very, very simple and I can set the record straight. It is a family issue,' he said. 'If he is not with us at Cambridge United then definitely at Braga. Any speculation is wide of the mark. It is a personal family issue and we look forward to seeing him again later this week. Certainly the ones who didn't start here will be involved at Cambridge, along with Wes, who we chose to leave out.'

Hughton also provided an injury update bulletin on first choice centre-backs Sebastien Bassong and Michael Turner, whilst midfielder Anthony Pilkington is unlikely to feature this week due to a knee problem.

'We're hoping that Michael will play some part on Friday (against Braga). He is closer than Seb,' said Hughton. 'Seb is maybe a week or two behind him. It is going to be very, very tight whether he makes the start of the season or not. We're disappointed that we haven't had them for the bulk of pre-season. Seb and Michael both had small operations in the summer and they are a little bit behind the rest. Pilks has got a slight knee problem but he will be fine. He has missed this game and he will probably miss Friday as well.'

Jonny Howson continued his scoring streak for the Canaries with a first half opener on the south coast before City were pegged back by Solly March's late hammer strike.

'We showed some real good quality but in that last period the game opened and we had the best chances,' said Hughton. 'Sometimes you have to hold your hand up when you concede a wonderful goal like their one. He shouldn't have got that far because we had two real good opportunities to clear it. These are the tests you want because they are at a more advanced stage of their pre-season. In the cold light of day you are always a bit annoyed when you don't get the result but it is as important to make sure we get the quality opposition, the fierce games you want under your belt because in two-and-a-half weeks time we need to be ready.'

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