• Premier League

Hughton warned over Norwich position

ESPN staff
February 14, 2014
Chris Hughton has been warned about Norwich's Premier League position © PA Photos

Chris Hughton must keep Norwich out of the bottom three of the Premier League or face the consequences, chief executive David McNally has warned.

On Friday, basement club Fulham axed manager Rene Meulensteen and replaced the him with former Bayern Munich coach Felix Magath in a dramatic attempt to stave off the threat of relegation.

Norwich remain in trouble and are now just two points above 18th place following Wednesday night's 2-0 defeat at West Ham, which left Hughton's men with just one win in 11 games.

McNally maintains while the manager - who oversaw a £20 million summer spending spree to strengthen the squad - continues to have the support of the board for now, the situation remains constantly under review in a "results business''.

In an interview with BBC Radio Norfolk and Archant, McNally said: "We are too close for comfort. Chris has been told in no uncertain terms 'get us out of that position and keep us out', but equally, we're three points off 10th.

"As far as giving any certainty for Chris, or anyone else - it's a results business. Whether that's Chris Hughton as manager or me as chief executive or anybody else, we're paid to do our jobs.

"As long as we achieve what is required of us, then we'll stay in work. It would be wrong at any level, delinquent almost, to give any guarantees. All I would assure Norwich supporters is that we are watching it very carefully. The whole board is aware of the strength of feeling from the support.''

Hughton was appointed in the summer of 2012 following the departure of Paul Lambert to Aston Villa, and eventually guided Norwich to a mid-table finish having been on a 10-match unbeaten league run. Norwich's main problem this season, though, has been a lack of goals, with just 19 in the league - club-record £8m signing Ricky van Wolfswinkel failing to find the net since the opening day.

"I know, having invested in the summer, the supporters expect us to be in a higher position, which is a natural conclusion considering this is our third season in the Premier League," McNally said. "Last season, we finished 11th. We had the 20th biggest payroll.

"I know Chris is working hard to do what we need to stay in the league and move up the table. He's 100 percent positive he will do that. So he has the support of the club to go on and ensure we get the points to achieve those objectives.''

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