March 9 2014 Latest news:
Paddy Davitt, Norwich City Writer
Friday, October 18, 2013
Norwich City’s international brigade have brought a feelgood factor back to Norfolk, according to Chris Hughton.
The likes of Swedish duo Martin Olsson and Johan Elmander played a full part in helping their country reach the World Cup qualifying play-offs. John Ruddy was involved in England’s successful mission to reach Brazil whilst Leory Fer started for Holland in their final qualifying victory in Turkey. Add a goalscoring cameo for Robert Snodgrass and his City team mate Russell Martin in Scotland’s Hampden Park win over Croatia along with action for Wes Hoolahan and Alex Tettey and it has been a positive experience for the Canaries.
“Most if not all have returned on the back of either good results or good performances so we hope we can take that on for this weekend,” said Hughton. “Some travelled back on Wednesday so Thursday was only their first real day back working as a group but there is a good feel, no doubt. We had the two Swedish lads who have come back in high spirits after getting through to the play-offs and John has had that good feeling from being part of the England squad who have qualified. Russ and Robert had a successful game against Croatia, Wes (Hoolahan) was involved for the Republic and Alex (Tettey) with Norway so you look for as many positives as you can from the whole thing.”
Anthony Pilkington’s hamstring injury was the one major downside with the midfielder forced to withdraw from the Irish set-up ahead of their games against Germany and Kazakhstan.
“We have a few knocks and bruises and we will assess them and make decisions over the next few days,” said Hughton. “Anthony is one of those. He came back a little earlier after pulling out of the first Ireland camp when he just felt something in training. He is one we are assessing but we hope he will be okay. He just has a little problem with his hamstring.”
Javier Garrido is back in contention after missing Chelsea defeat that saw Olsson retain his place in the starting line up after featuring in the previous Stoke away win.
“He had a couple of injury problems last season so we were mindful of the schedule with him during pre-season,” said Hughton. “We were very careful when he first joined and I think he is benefitting from that. We have to make sure we take all the good things from our last performance into Arsenal.”