Norwich City boss Chris Hughton sifts through the wreckage of a career low in Manchester City Premier League rout
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Norwich City's surrender against a rampant Manchester City was Chris Hughton's worst day in management.
The Canaries' chief insists he is still the right man to sift through the wreck of a thrashing sparked by the Blues' surgical precision and calamitous defending from his own side at the Etihad Stadium.
'We have all let the club down,' he said. 'There'll be some flak flying about after this game and we have to take it on the chin. I am manager and I pick the team and determine the tactics. It is tough to put into words what I feel on the back of that defeat.
'I have to raise their morale; that is my job. These results don't happen very often, as a manager I have never been on that sort of defeat and I don't think many of the players will have. This match is certainly as bad as it has got for me and I'm sure some of the players.
'We knew the quality they have and they can hurt you if you don't do things right. Manchester City were incredibly good, but we have to take responsibility for the goals we conceded. If we defend like that we make life so difficult for ourselves, but we must move on.'
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Hughton and his players spent Sunday re-living the key moments in a match that careered away from Norwich before the first quarter had elapsed after conceding three goals in nine minutes.
'We will look at the goals and we will apportion blame where we have to,' he said. 'We got on a downward spiral and before we knew it we were 3-0 down and then players get nervous on the ball. They can smell that and Manchester City looked to capitalise on it.
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'They have exceptional qualities and we made it far too easy. They didn't have to work as hard as we thought they should have to score goals. You have to able to handle them and handle them well and we weren't able to do it. Apart from two goals perhaps, Yaya Toure's wonderful free kick and one that was offside, the others were too easy for Manchester City to score. We won't be the only team in any season that takes a big defeat at Arsenal or Chelsea or here. That does not give me any satisfaction but you try to learn, you look for a reaction and they are a good group of lads, but they have been miles off it here.'
Hughton admitted even Yaya Toure's thumping free kick goal on the hour mark was a self-inflicted blow after Bradley Johnson was forced to take evasive action to halt Edin Dzeko's run 25 yards out.
'The most disappointing aspect for me is the manner of the goals we conceded,' he said. 'You can't give a team with players like Yaya Toure and (David) Silva and (Samir) Nasri an opportunity with free kicks in and around our box. It doesn't matter what the scoreline is here, if you concede goals like we do it then its an uphill battle. We never got into good enough defensive positions and the goals were either too comfortable for them to score or through our own mistakes.'
John Ruddy's defiance late on prevented even further damage.
'It was a tough day for John but he has been magnificent for this football club,' said Hughton. 'We've all had days like that, but I don't need to put an arm around him or any of the other players. What you want is for them to go away and think about this one very deeply.'