Tough-talking Farke proud of City's 3-1 win at the Blues
- Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd
Daniel Farke’s impassioned half-time pleas sparked Norwich City's ‘priceless’ 3-1 Championship win at Birmingham on Tuesday night.
The Canaries were pummelled at times by the relegation-threatened Blues prior to the interval at St Andrew’s, but Teemu Pukki’s brace and a stoppage time finish from Olly Skipp moved City 10 points clear of the chasing pack.
Pukki saw a first half penalty saved by home keeper Neil Etheridge in another tough test of Norwich’s promotion credentials.
“If I am honest I was not happy with our mindset. We were not poor but I got the feeling we were not willing to do the basics, to do the dirty stuff against the ball,” said Farke. “We were too concentrated on maybe saving energy for when we got the ball back in possession.
"You have to accept against a good side you have to defend. It felt like 40 crosses came into our box in that first half and we had the numbers out wide. We lost too many duels. We were not willing to throw our body into those duels.
"We were shifting across the pitch but not pressing with intensity. I was not happy and I told them.
“But I also said I know how hard it is for the fire to burn every three days. I told them at half-time it is not that important to me if we win or even draw this game. What I wanted to see was a different mindset. I wanted us to work as a team with fighting spirit and togetherness - not moaning about team mates or bad passes.
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"I wanted some steel. I have to say what they delivered in the second half was outstanding. We were all over them. They were still dangerous on the counters but we controlled them, played in their half and could have scored a few more.
"To have this mentality and to find a gear within the game shows our winning mentality. I am pretty proud of that second half and the result.”
Ivan Sanchez’s scruffy equaliser cancelled out a fine finish from Pukki in an uncomfortable first half.
“We showed a winning mentality,” said Farke. “It was a difficult game. This is the toughest, most relentless league in the world for a reason. We went into this game against a team fighting desperately to avoid relegation and well structured under Aitor Karanka.
"We had some first problems, but second half we were excellent. It was a priceless win for us.
“Sometimes maybe I am overly strict with them. We still created more chances against them here than any other team. We missed a penalty, we had other good chances, probably more than you get here and we really conceded not far from an own goal, in what we didn’t do to stop Birmingham.
"Maybe you could argue we were unlucky to still not be ahead in that first half.”