Norwich City: Can Hughton keep Norwich in the top flight?
This time last season Norwich City were flying high and making the most of being back in the big time. Despite being everyone's favourites to go down, Paul Lambert's men defied the critics and were sitting in ninth place - above Arsenal, Everton and Sunderland - with eight points to their name. Well what a difference a year makes.
Today as we enter game week eight, the Chris Hughton's Canaries are yet to win a league game, are the lowest scorers in league and are only kept off the foot of the table by QPR. Everyone knew Paul Lambert would be a tough act to follow but Chris Hughton certainly has a lot of work to do to turn this around.
Norwich won many admirers last season for having a go at the opposition. They had no respect for reputations and took many teams by surprise. However, second season syndrome is an affliction that has struck many teams before. It was only made harder by the fact that Lambert decided to leave.
Defensively Norwich are far worse off than they were last year. The 5-0 opening thrashing at Fulham didn't help, nor the five they conceded recently against Liverpool. Only Manchester City managed to score five or more past them during the whole of last season - 5-1 at the Etihad, 1-6 at Carrow Road. They still have to play the champions and have more than 30 games left to play. Hughton must get his back four organised soon or their goal difference will really affect their survival hopes.
Offensively Grant Holt has had a poor start to the season. He scored his first of the campaign in the 5-2 defeat by Liverpool and scored last time out against Chelsea, but they need more from him. Last season he bullied defenders to score 15 Premier League goals. However his actions in the summer, where he wanted to leave but decided to stay, may still be affecting him. Premier League defenders will also be more aware of his strengths and will have worked on how to nullify him.
Norwich play Arsenal at home this weekend and they haven't beaten the Gunners since stunning them on the opening day of the inaugural Premeir League season 20 years ago. This would be a great place to get their first win of the campaign, but I don't think too many people can see that happening.
Next weekend they travel to Villa Park to take on Paul Lambert's Aston Villa. Now that really would be the perfect place to kick-start their season.
Can Norwich survive this season? They are five points worse off this stage than 12 months ago but they comfortably finished 11 points clear of the drop zone. There are still plenty of points to play for and most fans would feel that there are at least three clubs worse than them. But can Hughton steer Norwich away from danger?
Calling all Norwich fans: What are your views on the season so far? What should Hughton do to get the best out of the team? Can Norwich avoid the drop? Whatever your views, we'd love to hear from you.