Importance of Norwich City's home Premier League clash against Watford is impossible to ignore
The 2-0 defeat at Brighton last Saturday – City’s fifth in six games – tells the story of a team struggling desperately at both ends of the pitch.
The latest loss represents City’s fifth consecutive blank on the road, with Teemu Pukki’s consolation at Liverpool on opening night still the sole time Daniel Farke’s side has found the back of the net on their travels this season.
In defence, City were all at sea on the south coast as they conceded goals number 25 and 26 of the season – and have goalkeeper Tim Krul to thank for that figure not edging closer to the 30 mark after just 11 games.
As mentioned last week, there is no point in hiding from the fact City are going through a difficult spell, but with 27 games remaining – and still only a six-point gap to the top half of the table – let’s not write this season off just yet.
With that in mind, it is too early to talk of must win games, but there is still no down-playing the importance of Friday night’s visit of Watford.
Quique Sánchez Flores’ side remain winless this season – and have mustered just two points and two goals from their five away games.
A win will put City right back in the mix heading into the international break, while a defeat would see the Canaries fall to the bottom of the table.
In terms of team selection, I was pleased to see Farke re-unite the trio of Onel Hernandez, Emi Buendia and Marco Stiepermann behind Pukki at the Amex, as he strives to find the fluidity which caused so much damage last season.
Stiepermann is one of several players struggling for form, but he showed glimpses of his capabilities, linking up neatly with Buendia before crashing a first-half effort against the crossbar.
But back to tonight’s game – and a rallying cry for City supporters to turn Carrow Road into a cauldron of noise. Those boys in yellow and green need it.