A cup run isn't a sensation that Norwich City fans are familiar with, but strange things are happening at Carrow Road at the moment. And Norwich won the match 2-1 last night (31 October 2012).
Clearly, both sides took the game seriously to some extent. However, had this game been in the Premier League the two teams may have looked quite different.
In fact, Chris Hughton made 10 changes from the starting team that played against Aston Villa. Tottenham Hotspur (Spurs) were far from full strength but included some high-profiled players in their team including Gareth Bale, Clint Dempsey, Hugo Lloris, and Kyle Walker.
I felt the inclusion of Bale was particularly interesting, and it was no surprise to see his quality count when he scored the opening goal in the 66th minute. At that point, it looked like Spurs would secure a relatively comfortable victory.
I was thinking that Chris Hughton had got his team selection wrong, and he should have included at least one of his key players. But the game changed upon the introduction of Alex Tettey, Simeon Jackson, and Grant Holt.
It was no great surprise that it was Tettey's shot that was deflected in for the equaliser, and Grant Holt and Simeon Jackson combined for the eventual winner. There are those outside of Norfolk that claim that Norwich has no real quality.
Well, what this result proves is that not only does the side have individual quality in key areas, but also considerable strength in depth. This was certainly second string, but it was still good enough to defeat a team that is likely to qualify for Champions League football next season.
I will not suggest that this was the best performance of the season from the Canaries, but they still had more than enough quality to win the match. And they did it while been able to rest the likes of Wes Hoolahan, Sebastien Bassong, John Ruddy, and Javier Garrido.
These are all signs that Norwich City are developing at an impressive rate and are well on their way to becoming an established Premier League side. It also tells Chris Hughton that he should have no fear in involving his fringe players in Premier League games.
- Sports & Recreation
- Chris Hughton
- Norwich City
- Gareth Bale
- Tottenham Hotspur
- the Premier League