Brighton boss Gus Poyet admitted that the key moments went City’s way during the 4-1 Carrow Road thumping on Tuesday night.
Even though Albion played some decent stuff at times – especially in the first 20 minutes, when they enjoyed two excellent chances via Liam Dickinson and Elliott Bennett – it was a comfortable victory in the end for Paul Lambert’s men.
But the colourful Uruguayan couldn’t help feeling that the Norfolk club got the rub of the green at important times. And the former Chelsea legend conceded that when you’re at the top of the league and flying, things just seem to go your way.
“Exactly, that is what happens. But you need to be a little bit tougher and a little bit more clever as a team – not individually,” he said afterwards.
“That’s the difference though – key moments. They went the right way for Norwich and against us. We didn’t have a chance really.”
With defender Tommy Elphick hinting at a new, tighter looking Seagulls ship before the game, it was somewhat of a surprise to see the visitors attack in the manner they did. And even though Grant Holt’s third minute strike forced them further out of their shells, Poyet revealed that was always the plan.
“The first goal changed the game. We knew that it would be difficult and we knew that Norwich are playing well and scoring goals.
“And when you score a goal like the first one – whether it’s a shot, cross or miskick – you know things are going your way. The same happened when we got back to 2-1 with the own goal.
“But we know the situation we are in, especially with conceding too many goals, and you need to try and win the game and attack. Norwich are a very good attacking team so from my point of view that was my decision [to attack].
“The early goal gave my players that extra bit to do but for half an hour, we were good. First goal, a cross; second goal, we lost the ball in our box – we cannot make those mistakes – third goal, I didn’t see it and for the fourth, we were all over the place. Goals are the difference between one team and another.”
And shoring up his defence is clearly priority No1 for Poyet after conceding seven in their last two outings. With the Seagulls sitting just one place above the relegation zone, he’s certainly got a big job on his hands.
“I think there are two sides of the story. In terms of trying to go forward and cause them problems, I was quite happy – we were a little braver than last Saturday.
“But on the defending side, we were still not good enough and we’ll probably have to make a few changes. In the first half for long periods we were very good on the ball but there is still a problem in defence. We are trying to sort it out.
“We have got the quality to get results but if you concede the quantity we are you have got no chance.”
But while the Albion chief was lamenting his side’s lack of discipline at the back, it wasn’t all sour grapes. The gracious south American was well aware that there was plenty of Canary quality on show.
“When you are in a situation where you are conceding goals you have to be careful about everything you do. There are no excuses and no complaints; it’s only a game of football between two teams but they were better than us today.”