In the days of English coal mining, canaries were used to assess toxic gas levels in the pits, with any sign of distress or even death signalling danger for those working alongside the yellow birds.
While today such practices are unnecessary, Norwich City – the club nicknamed the Canaries – are on their own descent into the depths of the Premier League and, with fans clearly distressed, it may be time to end the toxic reign of Chris Hughton before it results in the death of their top flight status.
The East Anglia club are 13/8 to be relegated following a 2-0 loss to demotion rivals West Ham United in a game decided by two late Irons goals.
It was a result that left Norwich 16th and just one point outside of the relegation places, with Hughton under increasing pressure following a season that began with much promise.
Looking back, an opening day 2-2 draw with Everton represented something of a false dawn for the Delia Smith-backed club, who spent big over the summer in a bid to cement their Premier League status.
That day €12 million signing Ricky van Wolfswinkel capped an impressive debut with a goal against the Toffees in what was supposed to be the first of many for the Carrow Road club.
Ultimately though, it has proven to be his only goal for the team, with the Dutchman on an astonishing run of 15 Premier League appearances without finding the net.
And the reality is that goals have been the main problem for the Canaries with an abject tally of 19 in 26 games representing the joint-second worst scoring record in the top flight.
Norwich’s loss to West Ham was the fifth time in their last seven games that the club have failed to find the net, while the Canaries have scored more than one goal just three times this term.
Gary Hooper is their top scorer, but with five goals in 21 appearances he’s hardly been in prolific form while the January transfer window didn’t bring much relief, with the uninspiring loan signings of Jonas Gutierrez and Joseph Yobo.
Hughton is currently 9/4 with Ladbrokes to leave his post, having overseen one win in his last 11 games. If the Canaries want to escape the doom and gloom of the Premier League’s bottom places, he may just have to.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.
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