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Hughton: Formidable Chelsea

Norwich boss Chris Hughton is braced for a "formidable" Boxing Day fixture at Carrow Road with a Chelsea side he believes could still be in the running for the league title.

Last Updated: 26/12/12 at 14:11 Post Comment

Chris Hughton: Norwich manager ready for a Boxing Day clash with possible title

Chris Hughton: Norwich manager ready for a Boxing Day clash with possible title

The Canaries suffered a 4-1 defeat at Stamford Bridge earlier this season and they face a Chelsea side that thrashed Aston Villa 8-0 just three days after.

With The Blues now third in the table, 11 points behind league leaders Manchester United and seven behind Manchester City with a game in hand, Hughton believes they are still on track for the title.

He said: "They have great attacking options. We experienced that at their place a couple of months ago.

"Victor Moses is starting to show his real quality now. Fernando Torres is hitting very good form.

"The fact they kept a clean sheet against Aston Villa as well shows the quality and depth they have throughout the squad.

"David Luiz playing in midfield is a role everybody felt was a role he could do and he showed some real quality.

"They are fairly formidable. They are placed very well in the league with a game in hand. They are still in the Capital One Cup with a great chance to progress (to the final).

"At the moment Chelsea are on a high and he [Benitez] will be judged on that.

"He will perhaps look at the two teams above them at the moment and think 'will they go through the season without dropping points?'

"That is very difficult. Swansea showed against Manchester United that everybody is fighting. If they (Chelsea) put a good run together then everything is possible."

Norwich will be hoping to dent those title prospects by returning to winning ways after their ten-match unbeaten league run was ended by West Brom on Saturday.

Hughton's men are tenth in the league, with equal points to Liverpool and Stoke.

He said: "For a club like ourselves to go unbeaten in this division (for 10 games) was a fantastic run.

"That has gone now and we have two very tough home games to look forward to.

"If someone had asked if would we be happy with the league position and the points we have got at this stage of the season, we would have said 'yes'.

"But it is about trying to continue the good things we have been doing. A good thing for us is we have been in every game. We certainly deserved a draw from the game at West Brom.

"These are the games you have to look forward to. We will make sure we are well prepared."

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lassic management. Build them up and then knock them back. Raise expectations and then dampen them. Create a dynamic where by you demand the most from your team, but where the team are given room to manoeuvre unexpected or unwanted results. Classy work by Van Gaal, he really reminds me a lot of me. A smart cookie, make no doubt.

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e will be the England left back for ten years or more, and then you will have to thank MUFC for that. *smiles*

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Shaw: Criticism spot on

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urely because of that little diva moment he had last night, I don't want him coming to my club. DESTROYED ? Grow up and give something back to the club that helped put you up there on the world stage.

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