Martin Keown "shocked" over Chris Hughton dismissal

Former Arsenal and England defender Martin Keown admits that he was "shocked" to learn of Chris Hughton's Norwich City sacking.

Former Arsenal and England defender Martin Keown has admitted that he was "shocked" to see Norwich City sack manager Chris Hughton last week.

The 55-year-old's two-year spell at Carrow Road came to an end on Sunday following a 1-0 home defeat to West Bromwich Albion.

City sit just five points clear of the relegation zone ahead of meetings with Liverpool, Manchester United, Chelsea and the Gunners in their final five fixtures of the campaign, and Keown believes that the Canaries' hierarchy panicked over the club's run-in.

"I was shocked to see Chris Hughton sacked last weekend but only because of the timing. In terms of results, it's been coming," Keown wrote in The Daily Mail.

"That [run-in] has created a panic and desperation in their play. That desperation has gripped everyone at the club and culminated in Hughton getting sacked.

"With the following four games a write-off, the board have gambled and tried to make one last change to secure their survival. If it works, it could be an inspired decision but I can't help feeling it would have been better to keep Hughton on."

Norwich travel to Craven Cottage this afternoon for a six-pointer with Fulham.

Coach Neil Adams of Norwich City celebrates victory after the FA Youth Cup Final First Leg match between Norwich City and Chelsea at Carrow Road on April 29, 2013
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