Display in 1-1 draw with Villa impresses Manager
CITY Manager Chris Hughton was delighted with his side’s performance in the 1-1 Barclays Premier League draw with Aston Villa on Saturday, but felt the display was deserving of all three points.
Michael Turner’s late leveller sealed another valuable point for the Canaries after Christian Benteke has given Paul Lambert’s side a first half lead against the run of play.
Villa’s Joe Bennett was shown a second yellow card for a foul on Elliott Bennett early in the second half as City set up camp in the opposition half, but had to settle for a draw after some fine saves from Villa ‘keeper Brad Guzan.
Hughton told Canaries Player: “It feels more like one that got away, but it’s always a little bit different if you’re 1-0 down and you come back.
“We were chasing and chasing and it was only right that we got the equaliser.
“Over the 90 minutes I thought we were the better team and a team that deserved to win the game. But when you’re 1-0 down it’s always nice to come back from that.
“You’re always worried when you’re behind, and it’s always hard to play against ten men. I’ve seen many games where you’re up against 10 men, and you have little effect.
“That wasn’t the case today when they went down to ten men. We had the momentum in our game and we used that really well.
“At that stage we got a lot of balls into the box, we got a lot of crosses in, and we had a great chance through Grant Holt, and we threatened. But until that goal goes in it’s always nerve wracking and it would have been a real travesty if we hadn’t got it because on the balance of play, we deserved it.”
There were impressive, hard-working displays all over the park for City, and despite a lapse of concentration for Benteke’s opening goal, the defence looked solid throughout, with Turner also managing to get his head to a Wes Hoolahan cross to equalise.
“Credit to Michael Turner,” said Hughton. “He is a player that has needed a little bit of rhythm in his game, and I think playing games will give him that rhythm.
“I was really pleased for him today. I was disappointed with the goal we conceded because it was a soft goal and we lacked that bit of concentration, but I was pleased for Michael and I thought he was part of a good XI today.
“Overall I’m delighted with the performance we gave today.
“There are good standards being set in these last two games and we have to make sure as a team that we maintain those standards as much as we can.”
One slight concern for Hughton however was an injury to right-back Russ Martin, who was replaced by Ryan Bennett at half time.
He added: “I’m hoping it’s not too bad, it was his back – it seized up a little bit but I’m hoping it’s fine.
“We’ve got the midweek game against Spurs of course, but I’ve got options, and I can use them. As long as it has settled down by the end of the week then he’ll be okay.”
To watch the full interview with Chris Hughton on Canaries Player, click here.