I hope they feel the pain – Grant
DAVID CUFFLEY Manager Peter Grant was a little short of sympathy for his walking wounded after Norwich City crashed to their seventh home defeat of the season, declaring: “I hope they're all hurting with that performance.
Manager Peter Grant was a little short of sympathy for his walking wounded after Norwich City crashed to their seventh home defeat of the season, declaring: “I hope they're all hurting with that performance.”
Midfielder Youssef Safri departed before half-time in the 2-1 reverse at the hands of West Bromwich Albion with a hamstring injury that could rule him out of the final five games of the Coca-Cola Championship programme, while skipper Adam Drury lost a tooth when he was caught by the raised arm of Albion's Zoltan Gera.
But Grant felt the Canaries' latest Carrow Road setback should have been a painful experience for the whole side.
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He said: “I hope they're hurting. I hope they're all hurting with that performance because it's just happened too often. We're too inconsistent. The only thing that's consistent is our inconsistency.
“It tells you one thing – you've not got the players that are capable of winning games when you're not playing well.”
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Drury's missing tooth was “part of football”, said Grant, while he said Safri struggled at times with a quick succession of games, the visit of Albion following three days after the 2-1 win at Hull.
He said: “Him playing two games on the bounce is sometimes a problem for him, with his age.
“If it's any slight tear, it could be season over. We knew right away that was him gone. Hamstrings you can't mess about with.
“Yesterday he had a slight groin strain but he wanted to play in the match. Maybe in hindsight I should have freshened it up prior to the match, but I didn't want to make too many changes because with that extra day I felt they'd be fresher.
“But West Brom – I went to their game on Saturday – were a much fresher team today and played better than us. Their experienced players played extremely well for them and our boys just looked like a team that had been put together.
“West Brom deserved to win the game, so I've no complaints. Our performance didn't deserve anything from the game, so it would have been a total injustice if they hadn't got three points. We just never played at all – there were too many poor players on the day.
“I thought we'd got out of jail. You go 1-0 in front and you think you're going to get the bit between your teeth.
“We never passed the ball well, we gave it away cheaply, made the wrong choices when all we needed to do was cross the ball in the box and we'd have scored.”
Grant admitted he felt City should have had a penalty when Dion Dublin appeared to be impeded by Sam Sodje in stoppage time, just after Albion had taken the lead.
“Yes, for sure, but the referee was as bad as us,” said Grant. “To be fair, if it had ended up in a draw it would have been a disservice to West Bromwich Albion, but it is a penalty kick. That's all you're asking for. I moan at referees and I moan at fourth officials for one reason, because I'm just asking for consistency.
“I'm not being funny because I know it's difficult for referees. The game's so quick now and things happen so quickly and television's watching you constantly and there's a guy in the stand watching you, so I understand. They're as inconsistent as we are, so that's the problem. That's why I get frustrated because I always feel as if one week it's a free-kick and the next week it's not.
“If we'd have scored I'd have taken it, but it would have been a total injustice.”
He said there would be no excuse for a lack of commitment in City's remaining games.
“It's the biggest thing in life, having that pride. Don't worry about that. They've got to play well every time, they've got to train well every day. If any of them switch off, they'll not be playing here.”