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Norwich boss Hughton questions Stoke penalty award

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By Stephen Donovan

Sunday 09 March 2014

Norwich City manager Chris Hughton was left frustrated by referee Andre Marriner’s decision to award Stoke City the penalty which led to their equaliser during the 1-1 draw between the sides on Saturday, writes Goal.com.

Chris Hughton

After a goalless first half, Norwich took the lead through Bradley Johnson, who headed home a free-kick from the right. They had looked set for a crucial victory in their battle for survival, only for Sebastian Bassong to upend Stoke’s John Guidetti in the box, with Jonathan Walters converting the resulting spot-kick.

Although the Irishman was sent off five minutes later, Norwich could not find a winner, and Hughton was left to bemoan a penalty decision which he considered ‘soft’. He said: "From the referee's point of view it's a very soft goal.

"There are certainly some referees who wouldn't give that. I think it's a soft one. It's a coming together, the lad's on his way down but I think there's no doubt in some circumstances referees wouldn't have given that so it's a soft one. But we shouldn't have allowed ourselves to get into that situation."

The point ensured that Norwich are now four points clear of the relegation zone, but they finish their season with games against Liverpool, Manchester United, Chelsea and Arsenal, meaning that their upcoming fixtures could take even greater significance.

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