Premier League - Hughton: I believe in players

Norwich manager Chris Hughton would have liked his team to have made a better start to the current Barclays Premier League campaign, but insists now is not the time to panic.

PA Sport
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Norwich City's manager Chris Hughton (PA Photos)

The Canaries have picked up four points from their opening five games, scoring just three goals in the process, following a summer spending spree like never before seen at the club.

The likes of Ricky van Wolfswinkel, Leroy Fer, Gary Hooper and Nathan Redmond were added to the ranks, but the new-look squad have so far failed to gel together.

Norwich travel to Stoke on Sunday before tricky fixtures against Chelsea and Arsenal and, although Hughton knows more points at this stage would have been preferable, he is not unduly worried.

"It is always a concern because we would want to be better placed than we are," he said.

"But we also have to realise we are five games in to the season and there are a few teams who are only one point better off than we are.

"It is not the time or stage to panic. You have to stay calm in this period and have the belief in your abilities and the ability of the team.

"We are very early in the season to be making judgements. Every game is an opportunity, no matter how difficult it may look on paper."

In facing Stoke, Hughton will come up against a club that appointed their first new manager since 2006 when Tony Pulis' reign ended by mutual consent at the end of last season.

Hughton praised clubs such as Stoke and is looking forward to playing Mark Hughes' Potters side on Sunday.

"We know what the average tenure of a manager is, and that is what it is these days," he said.

"We can't affect that as managers and we can just do the best job we can.

"It is always good to see clubs that have persevered with managers and allowed them to set a philosophy at a particular club and reap the benefits from that, but I know the modern game we are in is results-based.

"What Tony did in the seven years he was there was a magnificent job that saw the club grow from a team getting promotion into the division and becoming a stable Premier League team.

"I think Mark has perhaps got different ideas but certainly the personnel in the team are very much the players who were there last year.

"There are differences - that is normal when a new manager goes in. He wants to implement his own style and way of playing.

"I don't expect anything different in regards to the level of players we will be up against."

A win at home to Southampton and an opening-day draw with Everton at Carrow Road are the only points Norwich have chalked up ahead of their trip to Stoke.

Picking up results on their travels is something that has been hard for the Canaries, with the 3-2 win at Manchester City on the closing day of last term their only victory on the road in 2013.

Hughton knows how difficult it can be to pick up points away from home, but insists he always sends his players out to win.

"It is always about trying to get the right formula to get wins away from home," he added.

"Generally, wins away from home for most teams at our level come tough. It is about going into every game and treating it on merit and trying to get a result.

"That is what we will continue to do. Every game we play is an opportunity to get three points and that is how you have to look at it."

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