Tony Pulis spoke of Wednesday’s frailties in defending a lead after seeing Norwich take all three points with two late goals at Carrow Road this afternoon.
Having seen his side lose a hard-earned 1-0 advantage, Pulis said: “Confidence is everything. I’ve seen some really good signs from the group but they do lack confidence and a little bit of belief.
“I think things today went against us that could have gone for us. If we had got that second goal, then I think we win the game comfortably but it never came and they got nervous and a little uptight. They can’t do that.”
He explained: “It’s disappointing but the lads have worked so hard. There are two major things. The team has got used to losing and not grinding it out if they have to. I don’t think we ground it out today. I thought we played some good stuff today.
“But when the pressure starts, people have got to be a lot more composed on the ball. We gave the ball away too many times when there were simple passes.
“Joey came on and kicked two out of touch when he had simple passes. They have got to understand and recognise that they get paid to not only defend and defend well, which we didn’t on the two occasions when Norwich scored, but also to be as resilient and strong in possession of the ball because when we did do it we caused them problems.
“In the last 10 minutes to quarter of an hour, for some reason, they got really uptight and instead of getting their pass off they were just prepared to kick it back to Norwich.”
He added: “We were okay for 80 minutes, we kept the ball and played through the pitch. But when you keep giving the ball away, you end up being camped outside the box.
“We will talk about it on Monday but again the group has given absolutely everything today.”
It looked as though Pulis might be on course for a first win in five games as Wednesday boss after taking the lead on the hour through Josh Windass. Then, in the space of five second-half minutes, we had two penalty claims turned down and missed a great chance for Pelupessy to make it 2-0.
The Owls boss said: “If we get that second goal the game is over and we had the opportunities.
“We scored a great goal. It was a great ball in from Reachy and a great header from Josh. We had other occasions and I think we caused them lots of problems in that respect.”
Regarding the penalty appeals, Pulis commented: “The referee gave a free kick on the edge of our box for them and we had two challenges, very similar, in their box and he gave it to them, which is disappointing.”
Dominic Iorfa played in an unfamiliar midfield role and Pulis was pleased with his performance, the player lasting 55 minutes after his first start since an injury lay-off and leading Puis to say: “I thought he played really well. It’s a position he’s not used to but we wanted that statue, that presence there.
“Sometimes you are asking lads to do stuff that they are not used to but he went out there and did his damnedest.
“He breaks forward quickly and he has got tremendous pace and energy but he was really tired. I was even thinking of taking him off at half-time.”