Hughton sees red over penalty
By Football News
Norwich City manager Chris Hughton rued the controversial penalty awarded to Sunderland in the 1-1 draw on Sunday.
In a Premier League encounter full of drama at the Stadium of Light, Craig Gardner's penalty earned Sunderland a point as he cancelled out Wesley Hoolahan's opener.
Norwich had goalkeeper Mark Bunn sent off on the half-hour mark and Hughton's men were denied a penalty after Danny Rose had handled in the area.
But Hughton was unhappy with the decision to award Sunderland a spot-kick for a Sebastien Bassong handball after Steven Fletcher appeared to be offside in the lead-up.
"There were three big decisions in the game," he said.
"There was the sending off of our 'keeper, Mark Bunn, the Sunderland penalty from Sebastien Bassong's handball and the Danny Rose handball.
"Mark Bunn claims it hit him under the arm but it is always a risk when a 'keeper comes out of his area.
"I haven't seen replays so I don't know whether the Rose incident is a handball – I'm told that it is – but all I know is that he was definitely in the area.
"The one that most disappoints me though is the Bassong one because Sunderland were offside just before the ball strikes my player and for me, if the linesman gets it right and flags for offside as he should have done, then the penalty doesn't happen.
"And that would have been interesting because we were ahead at the time and who knows how things might have worked out had Sunderland not got back into it from the spot."
A poor Sunderland side struggled to break down a 10-man Norwich and with Wigan beating Newcastle on Sunday, Martin O'Neill's men are just four points clear of the relegation zone.
The Northern Irishman was disappointed by his side's performance with a man advantage.
"Our second-half performance was very disappointing. With the extra man, we should have made it count," O'Neill said.
"It was very disappointing for the number of chances we didn't create. Were we inhibited in our play?
"Given the run we've had at the moment, confidence is a bit low even among the most creative players and yes, I think it's fair to say our performance was inhibited."
its crunch time now.