Norwich City head coach Daniel Farke was full of praise for his much-changed side following Saturday’s 2-0 FA Cup third round win at home to Coventry City, but insisted there’s more to come from the Canaries.
“It’s a cup game so it only counts that you go through into the next round,” he said. We did this with a clean sheet win against a highly motivated side who really went for it during this game. A 2-0 win after 90 minutes - I take this all day long.
“We had several changes and many players on the pitch playing for the first time in several months like Bali Mumba or Xavi Quintilla. It was Jacob Sorensen’s first time more or less in midfield and Daniel Barden was on the pitch.
“Przemyslaw Placheta was involved in the lineup for the first time after his injury. Jordan Hugill had to wait for a while after his injury, so you expect a difficult start.
“In the first few moments, we were not really in the game but after that was a really good spell with two great team goals and a few other chances in the first half.
“In the second half, I got the feeling we were too concentrated on bringing it over the line and played a bit too slow with too many backward passes, but that’s understandable because the players who hadn’t been involved for a long period were getting more tired.
“The players I brought in, for them it’s not that easy because they’re not used to coming on as substitutes, so sometimes it looks a bit scruffy.
“We had several good chances. Teemu Pukki hit the post and Kenny McLean had a good chance, but they had three or four good situations too.
“In these moments, it was good to have Daniel Barden fully switched on today with a good performance. I’m pretty delighted for him so many compliments.
“In general, I’m delighted we were able to return to the dressing room with a clean sheet. Of course, we know that if we play with a full squad and are full in our rhythm, we can deliver even better performances.”
Farke added that, while the scoreline could have been even more convincing, the nature of the squad rotation meant a thrashing wasn’t to be expected.
“We dominated this game but allowed them a few too many situations to be there with a shot, so thank god in those moments Daniel Barden was spot on,” he said. “We could have returned to the dressing room more comfortable having given less away but this happens when you have several changes and the players aren’t used to playing that much together.
“We expected this and the most important topic is the clean sheet and that we scored more goals than the opponent. Coventry played more or less with their best lineup, so it’s a good win for us and I’m pretty pleased.”
“It’s good for Jordan - a striker, an offensive player - it’s beneficial to score. For Xavi, Bali and Przemyslaw to have minutes under their belts is also beneficial.
“We scored great goals. Our first goal was a great team goal in the build-up with vertical passes and great movement from Przemyslaw, a class assist of Todd Cantwell and a pretty clinical finish of Kenny.
“For the second goal, we had two good winnings of the ball in midfield with Alex and Jacob. After that, it was a great cross from Przemyslaw and a great striker move from Jordan. He was focused to bring the header over the line, so good goals without any doubt.”
Grant Hanley replaced Christoph Zimmermann at centre-back at half-time, but Farke suggested the change was more precautionary than a major concern.
“Zimmermann felt some pain and awareness in his muscle around his hip, so we have to assess him tomorrow,” he said. “We didn’t want to take any risks in this game and we don’t expect a major injury but he felt something so we have to assess it further on. I don’t think it’s too bad but we have to wait a little bit.”