Wednesday, October 17, 2012
Arsenal stand-in goalkeeper Vito Mannone has called on his Arsenal team-mates to stand up and be counted as the title hopefuls head for Carrow Road.
The 24-year-old Italian stopper has been covering for the injured Wojciech Szczesny since the Gunners’ 6-1 humbling of Southampton last month – and has played his part in helping the Londoners to their promising Premier League start.
Last up was victory at new boys West Ham, and Mannone expects a similar task to await at Carrow Road.
“It was very important (to win at West Ham) because we bounced back from the loss to Chelsea,” he said. “It was a really difficult game because they are very physical and I thought we came out with a really good win. It is great for our confidence.
“Norwich is another team that plays really well, especially at home. It is not an easy one again. I would compare it to West Ham. It will be a difficult test for us, we need to dictate the game and impose ourselves. If we let them do what they know, it will be a difficult game.
“We need to stand up, defend well as we have – that is always our base. From there we have massive quality and we can win.”
Theo Walcott’s absence has already been confirmed, following his clash with San Marino goalkeeper Aldo Simoncini on Friday night while on England duty.
The game is also expected to come too soon for Bacary Sagna and Emmanuel Frimpong, the former having fractured his ankle against the Canaries at the Emirates last season.
However, City will come up against the man likely to be England’s newest full-back, after England boss Roy Hodgson confirmed the FA will apply for clearance to pick Carl Jenkinson for next month’s friendly with Sweden.
The 20-year-old represented Finland at Under-19 and Under-21 levels.
Former Charlton man Jenkinson has been in excellent form this season after a trickier first campaign with the Gunners – one which included suggestions he would make a loan switch to Carrow Road at the start of the year.
“He made it very clear he wanted to play for England,” said Hodgson. “We are now making overtures to Fifa to try and make certain we can have him as an England player.
“I don’t want to trick him into playing for England for a few minutes just to ‘block’ him. But he had to make a decision because we’re very interested in him even if the competition is tougher to get him into the England team rather than the Finland team.”