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Dec 6, 2012

Hughton: Tough to keep players happy

Chris Hughton says Norwich's recent fine run of Premier League form has made life frustrating for some of last season's first-team regulars.

After a shaky start, Hughton has guided the Canaries to four wins and four draws from their last eight top flight matches, picking a largely unchanged side during that period.

And that has meant that players such as midfielders David Fox and Andrew Surman and strikers Steve Morison and Simeon Jackson have not had as many chances to impress as they had at this stage last season.

The Carrow Road manager told the Eastern Daily Press: "I know we may look at some games and think we need to go a certain way, or a certain player might fit the bill for a certain game, but generally, if things are going OK and you are picking up results, then it's easier to focus your mind on the team for the next game.

"Yes, it is hard to keep them happy - but that's how you want it. You don't want players happy to not be playing. But footballers see the game and know the game, and the fact we haven't made too many changes of late is a consequence of the form and the results."

Hughton also said he was looking ahead to the January transfer window and a possible strengthening of his ranks.

He praised the Carrow Road board, saying: "I have spoken to the board and they have been very good from the moment I walked through the door.

"But what they are more concerned with - as we all are - is what we are producing at this moment and making sure we are accumulating points.

"Of course we are also conscious that January is not too far away and, if we needed reminding, then the dozens of phone calls you get each day from agents will soon remind us. A scouting network is always an ongoing process, and it has to be."

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