Patience a virtue for City striker after injury had threatened his Premier League pursuit
- Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd
After seeing his season so nearly ruined by injury, Jordan Hugill is loving every minute of hitting the goal trail for Norwich City and resuming his pursuit of another Premier League opportunity.
The 28-year-old striker was signed from West Ham last summer for a reported £2.6million, in a deal which could rise to £5m.
The former Preston talisman joined knowing that Teemu Pukki was likely to be ahead of him in the pecking order but has taken his chance with three goals in three games while the Finland star nurses a side strain.
“It is sweet," said Hugill after his brace during Wednesday's 2-0 home win over Bristol City. "We’ve got an abundance of talent here and I’ve got to be patient, Teemu’s record speaks for itself.
“I knew I had to be patient coming in, I just had to do what I could do and see what happens. It’s nice to get on the score-sheet but this season it’s not about me, it’s about getting promoted and obviously playing well as a team.”
The burly forward was forced off at half-time of the 1-0 win at Middlesbrough in mid-November with a shoulder injury and head coach Daniel Farke initially feared a long-term absence, but in the end Hugill missed only four games and has been able to ease back to full strength.
“I ruptured two ligaments and partially did another, something like that, the physios know exactly, and luckily because the third one was still attached we didn’t need surgery – which I was really happy about," he explained.
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“Obviously I didn’t want to be out for four months because it would have stunted my progression here.
“It’s been tough, it’s been long, I’ve had to wait and be patient – which I knew I was going to have to be, coming here – but when you’re enjoying being at a football club and playing football here, it’s easier.”
Hugill joined the Hammers in a deal reportedly worth around £10m in January 2018 but made only three brief appearances before spending the last two seasons on loan at Boro and QPR, scoring 15 goals for the Rs last season.
“I left West Ham, I wasn’t playing for whatever reason, it was out of my control, but ultimately I want to get back to the Premier League to show what I can do in the Premier League," he continued.
“I believe I can do it in the Premier League so Norwich was a no-brainer for the fact that they kept the full squad, okay they sold one or two, and it’s a Premier League squad.
“I was looking at the strength in depth and it’s unbelievable, so coming here was a no-brainer.”