Sami Hyypia - Brighton let Norwich City off lightly

Brighton manager Sami Hyypia felt the Seagulls let Norwich City off the hook. Picture by Paul Cheste

Brighton manager Sami Hyypia felt the Seagulls let Norwich City off the hook. Picture by Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd - Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

Sami Hyypia insisted Brighton had let Norwich off the hook at Carrow Road in a six-goal Championship stalemate.

Bruno Saltor's first half header was cancelled out within four minutes by Jonny Howson and the Seagulls were also later pegged back in the closing stages by Gary Hooper's instinctive finish.

'It was a good start, but I wasn't very happy with what happened afterwards,' said Hyypia. 'We took our foot off the pedal, and stopped doing the things we had done right in that opening period, and we can't afford to do that.

'We can't afford to let opponents have an easy spell like that and let them put pressure on us. It was mostly due to (a lack of) concentration. Football matches are 90 minutes and we have to concentrate and do the right things for 90 minutes.

'I haven't seen a game that last 60 minutes. Everyone must work hard to achieve that goal and as a manager to teach that is not very easy.'

Hyypia absolved his defence of any blame for Russell Martin's thumping long range strike that put the Canaries in front shortly after the interval.

'At half-time we talked about making a quick start and getting our rhythm back, but they scored again. It was a tremendous strike from the full-back,' he said. 'We couldn't do much about the shot, but before that we could have done a little bit better.

Most Read

'We lacked concentration in the build-up play, we gave the ball away and made some bad decisions and that made it more difficult, but we showed great character to come back to 2-2, and to lead 3-2 – but then we allowed the pressure to come on us again. We needed to be clinical at the end of the game when we were leading and to do the basics and put pressure on the ball. We knew they would put more bodies up front, but I think we should have avoided the third goal.'

Former Ipswich keeper David Stockdale was again a prominent figure at Carrow Road after two previously defiant displays for Fulham.

'David played very well and showed he is capable of making important saves,' said Hyypia, who restored the 29-year-old to his starting line up after a recent hand injury. 'I had no doubts about bringing him back, we were assured before the game that his finger was okay and he was fit to start the game. He has used the time he has been out injured and has worked hard to improve and come back physically stronger.

'During the international break we have had two good weeks, where the players had some time off and we worked on fitness and a few little things.

'That has been very good for us, and many teams that come to Carrow Road would take one point, because they are a good side and have good players - but we came to win and I can't be 100pc happy when we don't get three points.

'I am sure Neil Adams will say the same, that they should have come away with the win, but we should have won. Maybe they had a few chances more than us, but the chances they scored could have been avoided.'