EPL: Are Norwich Turning Season Around During 3-Match Unbeaten Run?

Joe TanseyFeatured ColumnistNovember 1, 2012

NORWICH, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 31:  Alex Tettey of Norwich City celebrates a goal during the Capital One Cup Fourth Round match between Norwich City and Tottenham Hotspur at Carrow Road on October 31, 2012 in Norwich, England.  (Photo by Jamie McDonald/Getty Images)
Jamie McDonald/Getty Images

In the buildup to the start of the English Premier League season, Norwich City were looking like a promising side.

The Canaries had hired Chris Hughton after former manager Paul Lambert left the club to take the same position at Aston Villa.

Hughton inherited a squad that finished in 12th place in the Premier League, just two years after being in League One, that included a reliable goal scorer in Grant Holt and a bunch of veteran players looking to build on the high finish from a season ago.

The 53-year-old manager also brought in reinforcements during the summer transfer window.

Defenders Sebastien Bassong and Michael Turner were brought in from Tottenham and Sunderland respectively, as well as former Rangers defender Steven Whittaker.

Also brought into the club during the summer was the very promising Robert Snodgrass, who had a brilliant four-year spell at Leeds United in the Championship, as another attacking option.

With all of the promise and hope leading into the 2012-13 season, many believed that Norwich would survive another season in the EPL.

However, the start of the season did not go as the Canaries planned.

Only three points were earned in the club's first seven matches. Those points were draws against QPR, Tottenham and West Ham.

The season only got worse when the Canaries were thrashed at home by Liverpool, 5-2, at the end of September.

The next match after that saw Chelsea destroy the Canaries at Stamford Bridge, 4-1.

Coming out of the international break, there was some concern growing about the state of the club and if they were doomed to relegation, would Hughton be sacked before the new year hit.

The Canaries gained attention for all the right reasons in their first match after the international break as they took down Arsenal, 1-0, at home.

Holt's 19th-minute goal lifted the club out of the relegation zone and kick-started a season that, until that point, was going nowhere.

A week later, Norwich visited Villa Park and came back from a goal down to earn a 1-1 draw with Aston Villa and their former manager Lambert.

The Canaries were riding a two-match unbeaten run into their Capital One Cup round of 16 match with Tottenham at Carrow Road.

Hughton and company were able to pull off another upset over one of the top EPL clubs with a 2-1 win and earn a place in the quarterfinals to keep their cup dreams alive.

Now, the East Anglia club have moved up to 16th place in the EPL table with seven points and are on a three-match unbeaten run in all competitions heading into their home match on Saturday with Stoke City.

After their match with Stoke, the Canaries enter a stretch of matches that could see them earn six more points after Saturday against Reading and Southampton.

In the next five matches, the club also play Manchester United and Everton, who they may be able to steal a point from just like they did against Arsenal.

Although it is still very early in the season and a lot can happen from now until May, this point in the season may be looked back on as a time where the Canaries earned a good amount of points that helped them in the relegation battle.