SussexBaggie speaks…Hattricks and Canaries

Last weekend saw us progress into the fourth round of the FA Cup after a 4-2 victory at home to Cardiff City, thanks primarily to a hat-trick from Simon Cox.

I was not at the game so am unable to comment in any great detail on the match itself, but it is very good that we were able to score four goals against one of the better sides in The Championship, even though they were playing a weakened team ahead of their Carling Cup semi-final.

A lot of the debate after the game Saturday has been about whether Cox should start against Norwich City in our next game this weekend or not.

One view is that he found his level playing against the second-choice back four of a Championship club, although I believe this to be a very harsh way of describing a hat-trick in the most famous knockout cup competition in football.

My opinion is that Cox is a decent squad player for us, but certainly deserves a start after his hat-trick last weekend. He is a natural goalscorer and will prove it when he is played up front, with a lot of his appearances in the Premier League so far coming in an attacking midfield role.

Seeing as Shane Long may well be missing out on the game with a back injury as well, if Cox doesn’t start the game on Saturday, you would have to wonder whether he will ever get much of a chance in the side.

Familiar faces

The draw for the fourth round of the FA Cup has seen us face Norwich City at The Hawthorns, with the game being played exactly two weeks after our home game against the same club in the Premier League.

This weekend sees us take on Norwich City at The Hawthorns, in a game which is going to be a very tough test after their impressive start to the season. 

Our home form this season has been incredibly disappointing, although a fair proportion of our defeats at The Hawthorns have come against some of the bigger clubs in the division who should be beating us on paper.

However, home defeats against the likes of Stoke City, Wigan Athletic and Everton have disappointed Albion fans, who believe that we need to look to pick up points against sides who are not dissimilar to ourselves in terms of resources available and ambitions for the season.

Norwich City are a side who find themselves ninth in the Premier League, with a very impressive 25 points from their opening 20 league fixtures. However, they are not the first newly-promoted side to start a season in such a positive manner and we should certainly be looking to pick up three points from this game.

It will be a tough game, but hopefully the players can produce a good performance and pick up a positive result in the first of several important Premier League games over the next few weeks.

New face

This week has also seen us make our first signing of the January transfer window, with young attacking midfielder Scott Allan signing from Dundee United.

A midfielder doesn’t seem like a priority considering our lack of goals this season and the sloppy goals which we continue to concede from time-to-time, but Allan seems like a signing with the future in mind and he certainly seems to be very highly-rated!

Boing Boing! 

Would you start Simon Cox against Norwich City? Have your say here at Baggies Banter