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Norwich manager Chris Hughton admits to extra pressure before Stoke win

Updated: Monday, 30 Sep 2013 08:37 | Comments

Chris Hughton: 'The burden of results is always on you as a manager, but you have to be able to cope with that and have belief'
Chris Hughton: 'The burden of results is always on you as a manager, but you have to be able to cope with that and have belief'

Norwich boss Chris Hughton admitted after his side's 1-0 win at Stoke that he had been under more pressure than usual in the build-up to the contest.

The victory was the Canaries' second from their opening six Barclays Premier League games this season, taking them to seven points and up from 17th to 14th in the table.

Beforehand, there had been talk of Hughton - who guided Norwich to 11th last term in his first campaign in charge, and then had his squad bolstered by a considerable spending spree over the summer - being under major pressure to get a positive result at the Britannia Stadium.

And asked about that following the final whistle, Hughton said: "It comes with the territory. If we are talking about managers, there will be nobody that puts them under more pressure than themselves, because we take every defeat heavily.

"Of course, the burden of results is always on you as a manager, but you have to be able to cope with that and have belief - if you didn't have belief in your own ability and what you can do with the team, then you wouldn't take the job in the first place.

"You have to be calm through any periods of pressure, or supposed pressure, because it is about the players not feeling it and getting a result.

"Has there been a little bit more additional pressure? There has, because before the game, we were sitting fourth from bottom and that is pressure in itself."

"You have to be calm through any periods of pressure" - Chris Hughton

Jonny Howson struck the winner in the 34th minute from outside the box as Norwich took advantage of some sloppy Stoke play.

The visitors had already hit the crossbar through Ryan Bennett and were good value for their lead, but they survived a nervous moment after the break when Leroy Fer appeared to pull back Kenwyne Jones in the box, with no spot-kick being given.

Regarding the Jones incident, Fer confessed after the game that he had "pulled his shirt a little bit".

And when that was put to Hughton, he said: "He (Fer) is an honest lad!

"I have seen the incident, and yes, there is contact - I have to say, I thought the lad (Jones) made a meal of it.

"But if it is something we have got away with, then I think we are due one, as all Norwich supporters will tell you."

It was only Norwich's second top-flight away win in 2013 - the other being a 3-2 triumph at Manchester City in May - and Hughton said: "I think every win away from home is a big win, particularly for us, given we have found it more difficult away from home.

"I don't think there is anyone who would say different than we thoroughly deserved it. It is a big lift."

Stoke manager Mark Hughes, whose side are now 15th, also on seven points from six games, said: "It (the Fer-Jones incident) is a penalty, but we are not going to hide behind that missed decision.

"I think if we are honest, Norwich deserved to win because we didn't do enough."

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