Why Hugill has a tough gig at City
- Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd
Jordan Hugill is on a loser trying to oust Teemu Pukki, but he is still a huge factor in Norwich City’s Championship promotion bid.
Hugill has made only four league starts since arriving from West Ham, with rival Pukki back among the goals for the leaders.
The Finnish international struggled in the second part of the Premier League relegation season but has 10 goals in 17 starts this time around, after a prolific spell previously in the title-winning campaign.
Daniel Farke paired Hugill alongside Pukki for the final quarter of the Boxing Day 1-0 defeat at Watford, and admits the powerhouse has been dealt a tough hand with a shoulder injury and the Finn’s return to his goalscoring best.
City host QPR on Tuesday at Carrow Road behind-closed-doors, and it was Hugill’s 15-goal haul during an impressive season long loan last season that helped seal a City move.
“It is not that easy to compete with Teemu Pukki, who is one of the best in this country. I am pretty sure Jordan will prove how important he is for us this season,” said Farke. “He was out with a pretty painful injury.
"For a physical striker as well you need to be able to use your body but he will be better for those minutes on the pitch (at Watford). A great lad and he is great for mood in the camp.”
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Tim Krul is another influential figure on and off the park. The experienced keeper remains sidelined for this evening as he overcomes a thigh injury, but the Dutchman did make recent headlines when his new deal was announced on Christmas Day.
“It’s great news for us. For such a player, who has good chances to be number one for the Netherlands at a big upcoming tournament to commit his future to Norwich City says a lot about how far we have come in the last years,” said Farke.
“He’s absolutely happy and for him also I think a good choice, for both parties, and we are absolutely happy that we have a player of his quality – without any doubt the best goalkeeper in the league.
"To have such a personality and such a quality player, also for the next years at Carrow Road is great news and I think it’s fantastic for us.
"Great news on Adam Idah’s contract as well. A fantastic character, full of potential. There is much more to come from him and we are looking forward to welcoming him back into the squad after his injury.”