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17 March 2015

Manager rues lost points despite Loza's dramatic late equaliser

ALEX Neil's overriding emotion was one of disappointment despite his Norwich City team snatching a late point against Huddersfield Town at the John Smith's Stadium.

In an extraordinary end to Tuesday's game, Jamar Loza popped up with his first senior Canaries goal to earn a 2-2 draw in stoppage time, less than a minute after James Vaughan had put the hosts ahead and got dismissed for picking up a second yellow card in celebration.

Loza's strike sent the travelling support behind the goal into unexpected celebration, but Neil is frustrated his side didn't pick up maximum points in an open game in West Yorkshire.

City elevated themselves to fourth position with the point but they are now five off the top two in the Sky Bet Championship with eight matches remaining.

"I'm not happy because our objective before the game was to come here and get three points and we didn't do that," Neil admitted to Norwich City TV after the final whistle.

"If we've got any aspirations of challenging or going to be one of the top teams, then we need to come here and we need to win games.

"You can talk about anything you want within the game, it doesn't make any difference. At this stage of the season it's about wins, and we didn't get one."

Neil didn't shy away from what's required now from his players to keep alive their hopes of a swift return to the Premier League via the top two spots.

He said that there is no room for error, starting this Saturday when they welcome Nottingham Forest to Carrow Road.

"The players should be disappointed, I'm disappointed. I will feel a little bit less so tomorrow morning probably, and then we'll prepare for Nottingham Forest," he added.

"We need to start winning games. It's not as if we're on a losing run - that doesn't matter, it's about winning and we need to win.

"At this stage of the season, performances and hard luck stories won't wash with me.

"We're putting pressure on ourselves now, because if we had won that game tonight, you get yourself right in the hunt and it's not as difficult a task. We've just made it harder."

On Loza bagging his maiden strike, Neil believes it will give his confidence a boost, commenting: "Of course it will. He's a young lad coming through and I put him on there to really go for it.

"The starting line-up was really offensive. We really went for the game, we came here to win, but ultimately we didn't do enough in parts of the game when we had the ball."

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