Norwich head coach Dean Smith has challenged his team to win the Championship again after they were relegated from the Premier League following their 2-0 loss to Aston Villa. Dean Smith was sacked by Aston Villa in November and was appointed as the successor to Daniel Farke a week later. His managerial spell at the Canaries saw an upturn of form but they could not sustain it for too long and are rooted to the bottom of the table.

“They probably scored against the run of play – a ball over the top and a slip: Brandon [Williams] slips and Ollie [Watkins] scores. Unfortunately, that’s cost us in an awful lot of games this season – little individual mistakes,” Norwich head coach Dean Smith said. “I felt we should have had a penalty just after that and didn’t get one, but I don’t suppose I’ll get a phone call from Mike Riley. The Premier League is tough. I was at Aston Villa a couple of years ago and we got promoted and we spent £125m to try and stay in the league. The key to it, for me, is when you play against the teams in and around you, that you feel you are going to be competing with.”

“In the big games, against [teams like} Liverpool, Man City, and Chelsea, you try and scrap to get something out of those games where you can. We all know there is a gulf in quality between the top three and the rest of the league. Ultimately, we’ve come up short,” he added. “We’ve got a great base to go with, good foundations. It’s a well-run football club. The last two times we’ve been in the Championship, we’ve won it. That’s what we have to aspire to again now.”

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