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Hughton eyes home form for run-in

Norwich manager Chris Hughton hopes good home form will be enough to guarantee his side’s Premier League status.

Norwich scored a 2-2 draw against Swansea on Saturday which pulled them into the relegation dogfight.

Hughton’s side conceded a late Luke Moore goal to forfeit the lead, and the draw leaves the Canaries a mere five points above safety and without a win in five matches.

They now face a difficult run-in, with away trips to Arsenal and Manchester City yet to come as well as season-defining clashes with fellow relegation contenders Reading, Aston Villa and Stoke.

But Hughton has backed the club’s form at Carrow Road to keep them up.

“We are tough to beat here,” the Norwich boss told Sky Sports. “We have got three very difficult games away from home. Whether it will come to our home form, we will have to see.

“Whether it is this stage of the season or the start of the season, you are always looking at your home form.”

With Aston Villa and Wigan Athletic beginning to find form and those above them struggling, Hughton accepts that the relegation dogfight is becoming a particularly congested one.

“It is getting tough. We have got three very difficult games away from home,” he added.

“We have to make sure that in these final six games of the season, we get enough points.

“If we show enough belief and confidence, like we did today in good phases, then we will have done enough.”

Meanwhile, Swansea counterpart Michael Laudrup admits the draw was bittersweet, even though it ended a run of three consecutive Premier League defeats.

The south Wales club had taken the lead through Michu before strikes from Robert Snodgrass and Michael Turner either side of half-time had put the Canaries ahead.

But Moore’s late equaliser ensured the spoils were shared and ended the Swans’ run of losses, though the Danish manager felt his side perhaps should have claimed more than just a single point.

“Ending the losses is good, but it’s harder for me to answer whether I’m satisfied with one point.” He said.

“We dominated completely the first 30 minutes, we were 1-0 up and maybe should have been 2-0 up.

“We allowed them into the game out of nothing, but showed character to come back and score the second goal.

“It is one of those games where you say, ‘we could have won, we could have lost’. Maybe a point is fair. I am glad we stopped the bleeding and came back with a positive result.

“On the other hand, I feel we could have done a little more in the first 30 minutes, particularly, where we dominated completely.”

Controversy struck when Grant Holt’s stamp on Chico Flores didn’t receive even a yellow card, but Laudrup said the main issue was Flores’ fitness and not disciplining Holt.

“I don’t know how bad the stamp was. People have said to me that he carried on playing so it couldn’t have been so bad,” he said.

“I don’t know if the card should have been yellow, red or pink. The most important thing for me was that it wasn’t serious to Chico.

“He’s in a little pain right now, but he can walk. You have to remember Chico has just returned after seven weeks out because of injury.”

Sat 6 April, 2013
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