Canaries captain hails 'outstanding' display from Hugill
- Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd
Norwich City skipper Grant Hanley hailed the 'outstanding' efforts of Jordan Hugill after the striker's determined display as a target man during Saturday's 2-1 victory at Cardiff.
The summer signing had scored his second goal of the season during the FA Cup win over Coventry the previous weekend and retained his starting role with Teemu Pukki pulling out with a minor side strain.
Hugill didn't get the goal his physical performance deserved but his shot was well saved ahead of Todd Cantwell firing the Canaries 2-0 ahead during an excellent first half.
“I thought Jordan was excellent, you know exactly what you’re going to get," said Hanley. "I think the manager’s touched on it before with the media, that in the dressing room he’s unbelievable - and he was unbelievable on the pitch for us.
“He really showed his quality, he really dug in and gave us that bit of grit that we needed. The way he played the game, his experience, his game understanding, managing the game, winning fouls.
“I thought he was outstanding. I said to him at half-time that I thought the game owes him a goal because of the amount of effort and work he put in.
“He deserved one, which he never got but his work rate, I thought he was outstanding.”
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Victory left City eight points clear of third-placed Bournemouth but Cardiff rallied in the second half, having also been beaten by the leaders at Carrow Road a month earlier, when they were fortunate for the score to only be 2-0.
Hanley said of the scrappy second half: “We expected that because we played them not long ago at home and we felt like we were fairly dominant that day, so we felt like they would probably tweak it a bit and try to get after us a bit more.
“But that can suit us as well because it can make space for us to play, and that certainly showed in the first half, but second half they made changes and made it difficult for us at times.
“But sometimes you have to take pride in the gritty ones, sometimes it makes it a bit sweeter.”