There has been some commentary to suggest that Norwich City were a little bit on the negative side for their loss against Manchester United, and that they should have had a go in the first half. Of course, I can always understand this thinking and get frustrated by any defeat. I certainly think Manchester United were the better side, but 1-0 or 2-0 would have been a fairer reflection on the game.
Some people might have thought that Chris Hughton would have kept things unchanged from the Everton match, but instead, he elected to revert back to the preferred 4-2-3-1 system for greater defensive stability. This is something that certainly didn’t surprise me, given the magnitude of the task to get something from Old Trafford.
It’s easy to think that the heavy defeat means that Hughton got it things wrong tactically. However, sometimes the game plan can be right, but the opposition just has a very good day. I think it’s fair to say that didn’t happen for the earlier game at Carrow Road this season.
But, it didn’t look like Sir Alex Ferguson was in the mood to mess around for this particular game. The team selection was strong, and the finishing was clinical. Maybe some people might feel that Hughton needed a bit more of an attacking edge, and his team certainly didn’t create many presentable opportunities.
However, a gung-ho approach at Old Trafford is suicidal, and the Norwich boss was absolutely right to keep things tight in the first half. He then tried to get back into the game by changing the system and introducing Kei Kamara, but on this occasion, the league leaders were simply too good.