Hughton calls for Canaries focus

Norwich boss Chris Hughton has called for his side to quickly accumulate the points required to ensure survival.

Last Updated: 16/03/13 at 15:20 Post Comment

Chris Hughton: Searching for more points

Chris Hughton: Searching for more points

Norwich boss Chris Hughton has called for his side to quickly accumulate the points required to ensure Barclays Premier League survival.

The Canaries have 33 points ahead of Sunday's match at Sunderland and, in a congested lower half of the table, Hughton hopes his side control their own fate in the final nine matches of the season.

"It's about looking after your own business," Hughton said.

"You hope that if you're able to get good enough results you don't have to worry so much about other results.

"We're all in there fighting; everybody's desperate to get points.

"It is a tough part of the season where you can get unexpected results. There is so much football to be played still.

"Teams are striving to get out of the bottom three and teams not in the bottom three are striving to push further away.

"Everybody has objectives at this stage of the season, and as the games are ticked off it's even more important you're in the position you want to be in."

Norwich have just one win in 12 Premier League matches - against Everton last month - and one away success all season.

The Canaries, who have kept nine clean sheets this term, to the delight of Hughton, have drawn four of their last six, including last week against Southampton when Grant Holt was unsuccessful with a late penalty.

Hughton hopes to find a cutting edge and convert draws into wins to secure Norwich's future more quickly.

"We've tried to address that of late, but we're striving to get balance," Hughton said.

"We have had a lot of clean sheets, which is really pleasing, but we've also had a few games where we've let in a few goals. On three occasions we've let five goals in.

"But I've been delighted with how we've been as a team defensively, but we've got to make sure going into these nine games we're giving ourselves an opportunity to win games.

"There is that difference between drawing games and the three points you'll get from a win. We need to make sure we win enough games."

Hughton had not considered the reception he can expect at the Stadium of Light as a former manager of Sunderland's arch rivals Newcastle.

But he is well aware the Sunderland crowd will be unhappy with the six-game winless streak which leaves them bottom of the form guide at a crucial stage of the season.

With Sunderland facing Manchester United, Chelsea and Newcastle following the Canaries clash, Hughton knows how valued a win over his side would be.

Hughton said: "There are expectations up there, because they are a very big club. They have a big support, a very vocal support.

"Their support would see this as one of the games that they should win.

"Their form is not their best at the moment, but they are playing at home against a team around about them.

"And, of course, the expectation will be more on them than on us."


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