Reaction: Blues 1 Norwich City 3

I have to keep believing and keep trusting these players.

Aitor Karanka

Aitor Karanka gave his reaction after Blues were beaten by Norwich City at St. Andrew's Trillion Trophy Stadium on Tuesday night.

Blues went in level at the break thanks to a Neil Etheridge penalty save which was shortly followed by an Ivan Sanchez equaliser.

However, Teemu Pukki restored Norwich's lead in the closing stages with his second of the game and Oliver Skipp added goal number three in added time to give the league leaders the victory.

But despite the defeat, Karanka was able to take great heart from both the effort and quality displayed by his side in the Sky Bet Championship clash.

Speaking to the media post-match, Karanka highlighted the positives from a brave display against Daniel Farke's Canaries.

He said: “The first half we were much better than them and they are not just another team in the league, for me, they are the best team in the league by far. The table is a reflection of how good they are and they are ten points clear."

The Boss continued in his assessment of the encounter, explaining how his team rose to the challenge posed by a side now ten points clear at the division's summit.

He told the media: “If you were watching the game and didn’t know the positions in the table you could think both teams were pushing for promotion. The intensity was really good and both teams when they had the ball played really good football and created chances, but in the second-half we didn't take advantage of our chances.

“We have the points that we have but it is true that it is an encouraging performance for the future.

“I have to keep believing and keep trusting these players."

Karanka also addressed the media on Rekeem Harper's form, offering an explanation for his withdrawal after the break and praising his midfield teammates.

The gaffer said: “Rekeem was completely exhausted and he was suffering from cramp. It was his third game in one week after not playing for a long time. He is young but he is not superman! It is good for him and every single day he is better and more confident. He read the game really well today.

“I know how good he [Gary Gardner] is. Playing in that position he is really good, he is really powerful and we need that energy in the middle of the pitch and with Ivan Sunjic we are really good."