A dejected Alex Neil has called on his Norwich side to bounce back immediately following their disappointing 3-0 Carrow Road defeat to relegation rivals Sunderland.
Fabio Borini’s first-half penalty and second-half strikes from Jermain Defoe and Duncan Watmore left the Black Cats just a point from City, and safety, with a game in hand.
After the match, a clearly downbeat Neil called on his players to win at least two of their remaining four games to have any hope of securing safety, with Newcastle also in a three-team scrap for survival.
“I’ve said to the players if we are going to do it, then we are going to have to do it the hard way,” Neil said.
“We’ve got four games remaining and we need to win at least two.
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“But you have to bear in mind the other teams are still chasing us. Sunderland have got to win that game in hand to make it count.
“However, if we don’t win games between now and the end of the season then it won’t be enough.”
The breakthrough in the match arrived four minutes before half-time when Andre Wisdom chopped down Borini in the area, allowing the Italian to tuck away the spot-kick.
Sunderland grabbed the second in the 53rd minute when Borini pinged a perfect low ball across goal and Defoe arrived at the far post to tuck away his 16th goal of the season.
City manager Alex Neil felt Sebastien Bassong had been fouled in the build-up, however, and also had his doubts about the penalty.
“I think you could argue the big decisions didn’t go in our favour,” he added.