Hughton: Confidence is growing

Chris Hughton feels confidence is soaring at Norwich after claiming another fine result against one of the top sides.

Last Updated: 25/11/12 at 13:57 Post Comment

Chris Hughton: Shakes hands with David Moyes at full time

Chris Hughton: Shakes hands with David Moyes at full time

Chris Hughton feels confidence is soaring at Norwich after claiming another fine result against one of the Premier League's leading lights.

The Canaries followed up their stunning defeat of Manchester United by snatching a 1-1 draw against high-flying Everton at Goodison Park.

It needed a last-minute equaliser from Sebastien Bassong to secure the point, but Hughton felt his men were good value for a result which extends their unbeaten run in the Premier League to six matches.

Hughton said: "I think there has to be confidence. Any team that is winning games and picking up points - if you can't gain confidence from that then you never will.

"We have got a hard-working team and have got a lot of quality in the team.

"We know we have to work and put in a real shift to be able to get our points at this level. That is what we have been doing."

Hughton's task since taking charge in the summer has been to build on the club's impressive first season back in the top flight and after a shaky start, no wins in the opening seven games, things are coming right.

The team have not looked back since pulling off a shock win over Arsenal a month ago and the club's summer signings, not least the impressive Bassong, are finding their feet.

Hughton said: "A group of players have come in that have got to feel their way into a squad.

"The squad we had here was already of good quality and they have mixed in very well. At the moment we have got a nice balance.

"We have had some blips and poor performances along the way, but overall we have been quite happy with the form."

On the positive impression he himself is making, Hughton said: "You always enjoy it more when you win games or you pick up valuable points, particularly away from home, and this certainly is one of those."

It took Norwich some time to settle into the game. Everton, who were looking to strengthen their top four credentials, started superbly and claimed a deserved lead when Steven Naismith finished emphatically from close range after 12 minutes following good work by Bryan Oviedo.

Everton had a number of other chances in the opening half hour with Leighton Baines forcing one particularly good save from John Ruddy.

Baines extended Ruddy again in the second half after a fine run but Norwich grew into the game with Robert Snodgrass having a shot cleared off the line and Anthony Pilkington testing Tim Howard.

Naismith squandered another good chance when he failed to square to an unmarked Nikica Jelavic and Everton paid the price after Baines was harshly penalised for fouling Steve Morison in the last minute.

Javier Garrido swung in a dangerous cross and Bassong planted a firm header past Howard.

"It was left to a free-kick very late in the game but I thought over the 90 minutes, as the away team, we probably deserved it," said Hughton.

It was another frustrating result for Everton, who have now won only one of their last seven matches, a sequence which has included five draws.

Manager David Moyes said: "We were probably looking to just see it out and see the game through but unfortunately we couldn't do that.

"There was some good stuff and obviously some bad stuff as well.

"There were some good bits of play but our good bits of play are not resulting in goals, or even chances at times.

"Our good bits of play are tending to peter out a bit at the edge of the box. We have to try to make that better."

One positive for Everton was the performance of Oviedo on his first Premier League start.

The Costa Rica international came in on the left of midfield as Moyes made changes enforced by injuries.

The former FC Copenhagen player said: "I try all the time, when I have the opportunity, to play well and help the team.

"Of course it is very difficult, the games are very hard. I came from Denmark and it is very different."

Norwich, who face Southampton in midweek, were due to assess goalkeeper John Ruddy after he was forced off with a thigh injury eight minutes from time.


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