Norwich City’s Cameron Jerome looking for instant response
- Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd
Senior stars must stand up to ensure Norwich City's midweek devastation does not derail their promotion bid. The Canaries had just 90 seconds of injury time to see out their 3-2 lead at Newcastle – only to end up losing the game.
Such capitulations have a history of writing off entire seasons, something Alex Neil's men arguably suffered on their way to Premier League relegation last term. But Cameron Jerome is keen to ensure history is not repeated.
'Definitely these things can do damage, but we are strong characters in there,' said the City striker.
'There's a good mix of experience and youth, so it's up to the older boys and the leaders in the dressing room to pull us together, shake ourselves down and go again on Saturday at Wolves. Wednesday was an opportunity to go back to the top of the league at Newcastle and we knew they would come at us and want to beat us, while we didn't necessarily have to beat them. Our plan worked to a degree – obviously until the last five minutes.'
That plan was not the original one however, and Jerome admitted City had to adjust their efforts after being overran from minute one at St James' Park – only to commit a cardinal sin as soon as they earned a 3-1 second-half lead.
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'We switched off and you can't do that,' admitted Jerome – with Dwight Gayle replying almost immediately to keep the Magpies within touching distance.
'We've had a fantastic start so we can't put too much of a dampener on it after a defeat.
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'But it's difficult to take at this moment in time, having put ourselves in such a good position. We weren't close enough to people from the start.
'It was something we discussed going up there, that we were going to try something different – but it didn't seem to work and we went back to what we do, in terms of getting close to people.'
'Once we got the hang of that, I thought we got into the game. We created a few chances and I thought we controlled it, hit them on the break.
'It wasn't meant to be. Lack of concentration, tired legs at the end, tired minds. And we were punished.'
City remain second in the table, two points behind leaders Huddersfield with Newcastle now third just a further point behind.
Once again Norwich will be last to play during a Championship round of fixtures, thanks to Saturday's 5.30pm kick-off at Molineux.