Winning mentality?

Oli CliffordAnd the award for outstanding contribution to the Norwich shirt against Burnley goes to...Carl Cort and Wes Hoolahan. Unfortunately these two winners are unable to collect their awards in person as they are currently off of the pitch having been substituted early yet again.

Oli Clifford

And the award for outstanding contribution to the Norwich shirt against Burnley goes to...Carl Cort and Wes Hoolahan. Unfortunately these two winners are unable to collect their awards in person as they are currently off of the pitch having been substituted early yet again.

Oscar season is upon us but there are no awards for knowing that Norwich City are certainly in a relegation dogfight. The problem seems simple, Norwich outplay teams yet fail to capitalise on their domination. This paired with a flaky defence has led to dropped points all over the length and breadth of the country.

But what I'm asking is are we utilizing our most dangerous and creative players for 90 minutes each week. Against Burnley Carl Cort was an ever present menace to the Claret's central defenders. He held the ball up powerfully, won his share in the air and linked play with some deft footwork for 68 minutes.


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Likewise, Wes Hoolahan buzzed around the pitch making a nuisance of himself by drawing fouls from almost every Burnley player. It was Hoolahan's intricate pass that led to Fotheringham's cut back onto Cureton's right foot which gave Norwich the lead. The former Blackpool man continued to demand the ball, pulling the strings behind most of Norwich's attacking play until he too followed Cort on 83 minutes.

Now there is nothing wrong with resting players after the job is done, or substituting players in order to restructure to a more direct mode of attack, but these two players were still the most likely outlet for a Norwich winner; Cort's height and physicality far outshining his replacement, Chris Killen, who failed to win a single header decisively enough to worry Burnley.

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The service to Cort had been so-so during the entire game, perpetuating a depressing Canary trend of not making the most of our threatening assets. Similarly, once Hoolahan had departed a creative hole was left in the centre of the pitch, especially when young Luke Daly was begging for the chance to show Carrow Road his pace with a cute ball over the top. Instead his talents were wasted as well.

These substitutions showed either a worrying amount of tactical naivety from out inexperienced gaffer, or perhaps an even more perturbing ignorance about what Norwich need to do to remain a Championship side next season. Lets hope lessons are learned quickly as with only 12 games left, the time for mistakes in officially over.

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