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Alex Neil is no fan of crunching the numbers in Premier League relegation scrap

06:15 16 February 2016

Norwich City manager Alex Neil is looking forward to a Premier League trip to Leicester City. Picture by Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

Norwich City manager Alex Neil is looking forward to a Premier League trip to Leicester City. Picture by Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

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Alex Neil will leave the number crunching to Norwich City’s Premier League relegation rivals.

City eased out of the bottom three on goal difference after a 2-2 top flight draw against West Ham at the weekend, allied to Newcastle United’s 5-1 defeat at Chelsea.

Neil, however, is not banking on favours from anyone else in the survival scrap.

“I only care about Norwich, no-one else. Everyone gets a bit apprehensive. Me, the players and the fans but listen we are not going to be the only club in this situation,” he said. “It’s not a case of working out how many points or what the others might do. If a club go on a run of seven or eight without picking up points then it won’t be enough to keep them in the division, and that would apply to the teams in mid-table now. I can’t predict what a Bournemouth or a Crystal Palace is going to do, all I hope is that we do enough to get a really good points tally. Whoever is in the bottom three come the end, my only concern is ensuring it is not us.”

City head to table-topping Leicester City and then host Chelsea later this month when they return from a warm weather training camp in Abu Dhabi but Neil insists he is focusing on his men not the opposition.

“Every game in the Premier League is a challenge to relish so it doesn’t matter to me that it is Leicester next,” he said. “We went to Liverpool and played extremely well, got a draw, went to Sunderland and totally dominated them and won the game comfortably, beat Bournemouth comfortably at our place. We have shown we are capable. We don’t need to worry can we do, it’s what is the process to get us to that point and that is what we are trying to address.

“Most teams will set-up slightly differently away from home. Even Arsenal, who is known for being very expansive, they go away and set up 4-4-2 when they haven’t got the ball. People might want you to say this is how we play, this is how we will go home or away, but even the best teams don’t do that. You have to adapt.”

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30 comments

  • Just another gentle reminder that this part of the site is football related MB. If you have nothing to say then how about doing us all a favour and saying nothing? Your random ramblings are ruining these comment boards and there is no way of blocking you!

    Report this comment

    baguio

    Thursday, February 18, 2016

  • I concur, Rick. Bass was nectar, now it's just OK. Pedigree much the same. Reliably drinkable but nothing special. Probably a ploy to make it universally acceptable - offends nobody. Draught Bass in Gundry White's back in the '60s WAS nectar!! I'm off for a Marmite and Caviar butty with capers and anchovies, washed down with a bottle of Worcester sauce. Helps build up my thirst, you see.

    Report this comment

    Mad Brewer

    Wednesday, February 17, 2016

  • Crunching numbers is exactly is what should be done. 40 points should be the prime target & 10 wins & 10 draws earn those points. We should target the fixtures that present the best opportunities & the points like those won at Anfield & Old Trafford, together with the home draw against Arsenal should be seen as a bonus & make up for any deficiencies from the targetted games. The other vital asset is game management,like when we were 2 up against Liverpool & West Ham, close the game down & make the obvious substitutions, would be of more benefit than the managercoach group hug, DO YOUR JOB & have your hug at the end of the match. AN has many faults & has divided the squad, lost(given away) our best goalscorer....I wish he'd stay in Abu Dhabi

    Report this comment

    never mind the danger

    Tuesday, February 16, 2016

  • You lot can blame RM all you like but Wes was 100% to blame for their second goal. The foool left his post unattended to give Nolan a free shot from 14 yards. If RM apologised for his back pass then so should you because that was just as bad!

    Report this comment

    baguio

    Tuesday, February 16, 2016

  • Tettey may well have made a difference idy&g but it seems that our central defenders have to cover for the full backs. The fullbacks are attacking because our wide midfield players are not because our wide midfield players have been drawn into the middle to cover the central midfield players and .....guess what our central midfield players are doing.......... protecting the central defenders. I exaggerate for amusement and this is back to the wonderful Dutch total football idea. However for us it looks as if it needs slightly finer coaching, far greater leadership on the pitch and possibly a higher lever of physical fitness for the players. If we got central defence right, i think it would all flow from there, more confidence, fewer no-show days and more points. Fingers crossed.

    Report this comment

    waclor

    Tuesday, February 16, 2016

  • Tettey may well have made a difference idy&g but it seems that our central defenders have to cover for the full backs. The fullbacks are attacking because our wide midfield players are not because our wide midfield players have been drawn into the middle to cover the central midfield players and .....guess what our central midfield players are doing.......... protecting the central defenders. I exaggerate for amusement and this is back to the wonderful Dutch total football idea. However for us it looks as if it needs slightly finer coaching, far greater leadership on the pitch and possibly a higher lever of physical fitness for the players. If we got central defence right, i think it would all flow from there, more confidence, fewer no-show days and more points. Fingers crossed.

    Report this comment

    waclor

    Tuesday, February 16, 2016

  • Brewer, Draught Bass is a shadow of the beer it used to be, and the one I enjoyed as a student in the early 70's. To be honest, I'm surprised they are still brewing it . Have not sampled Marston's Ped of late. Is it still good ? As for caviar....you can put it in the same bin as Marmite, plus anchovies , capers and any other ridiculously salty stuff. Like y+g I also feel we lack something when Tettey does not play. I'm not saying he's perfect, and is usually a yellow card waiting to happen, but the defence seems stronger with him in it.

    Report this comment

    Rick

    Tuesday, February 16, 2016

  • I hear you, Waclor. I would like to think that had Tettey been on the field our covering deficiencies would not have been so easily exploited.

    Report this comment

    idreaminyellowandgreen

    Tuesday, February 16, 2016

  • I don't like crunching the numbers either, but that is only because the answer for us is a measly 32 points as far as i could see in my predicted results in EDP last week and I got the West Ham result spot on.

    Report this comment

    DaveG

    Tuesday, February 16, 2016

  • I did not know Bass still had buildings as I viewed a property on the site and was under the impression they were developing the whole site,s mind you That wes 4 years ago.

    Report this comment

    iMac

    Tuesday, February 16, 2016

  • idreamyellowand green, take your point but whichever way you play, Brady was way out of a normal position for a left back. In fact under Hughton even our striker was not allowed that far forward. Fantasic goal though and with talent like that, he needs to be in a role where defending is not the main task. Many of us have been extremely critical of our central defenders this season but with the full backs so frequently out of position, they face some very difficult decisions.

    Report this comment

    waclor

    Tuesday, February 16, 2016

  • Coors, Marston's and Burton Bridge. Bass is still brewed under licence by Marston's. White Shield is still produced in small quantities at Coors nano brewery in the museum\visitor centre. Coors occupy the old Bass\Worthington brewery.

    Report this comment

    Mad Brewer

    Tuesday, February 16, 2016

  • I like Marmite. Beats Corporate Caviar any old day.

    Report this comment

    Mad Brewer

    Tuesday, February 16, 2016

  • @iMac. 3 attempts to communicate blocked There's still plenty of beer being brewed in Burton. I cannot get past The Watchers today.

    Report this comment

    Mad Brewer

    Tuesday, February 16, 2016

  • Burton Bridge Brewery is a relatively long-established small Brewery. Coors have inherited the legacy of the old Burton Brewer, Bass, Worthington. Ind Coope's old brewery was sold to Bass long ago. The premises were adjacent, it just needed a few pipes to join them together. The mini-micro brewery in the Coors Museum\Visitor Centre still produces the iconic Worthington White Shield. The Marmite factory is still in Burton. That's where a lot of Britain's surplus yeast goes. Very nutritious stuff. And delicious as an alternative to beluga caviar on toast for breakfast. The sturgeon also provides some of the isinglass for beer clarification. My old pal Henry "Blowers" Blofeld often opts for Marmite at his Private Club, The Whiffler. We must not forget Marston, Thompson & Evershed... where they brew Pedigree - and Bass under licence. The only Burton Union fermenting system extant. Still plenty of brewing going on in Burton on Trent. It's all in the water, you see.

    Report this comment

    Mad Brewer

    Tuesday, February 16, 2016

  • ᵞᵉˢ˒ ᴵ ᵘᶰᵈᵉʳˢᵗᵃᶰᵈ ᶤᵗ ᶤˢ ᵃ ᵐᶤᶜʳᵒ ᵇʳᵉʷᵉʳʸ ;-)

    Report this comment

    Ole Tommy Buster Custard

    Tuesday, February 16, 2016

  • It's important to remember that Brady's terrific self made goal came as a result of him running from deep, thanks to his starting position at left back. Had he been in a more advanced position his run probably would have been anticipated and dealt with before he had the chance to steal possession. His great goal is not necessarily evidence to suggest he start as a winger.

    Report this comment

    idreaminyellowandgreen

    Tuesday, February 16, 2016

  • I haven't heard of that one is it a micro brewery

    Report this comment

    iMac

    Tuesday, February 16, 2016

  • Burton Bridge Brewery is in Burton !

    Report this comment

    Ole Tommy Buster Custard

    Tuesday, February 16, 2016

  • Bru - no corporate tickets in the Championship I'm afraid. Well maybe some, fewer, more or less. Less likely tho' the current sponsors will have the same allocated numbers to dish out w!lly n!lly. Deffo no Sir Alex Fergy box, no Zola suites, no Platinum Citeh lounges, no Stella minibar at Selhurst, no Vicarage Veuve Clicquot and certainly no Emirates executive enhancements, £60 Gooners cookies there, per person !!!! ’’›(Ͼ˳Ͽ)‹’’ . . . . . having said that, Iet's not assume we won't be in the Prem. Fingers crossed ٩(^‿^)۶

    Report this comment

    Ole Tommy Buster Custard

    Tuesday, February 16, 2016

  • Brew I go up to Burton a lot my son lives there , I don't think there any breweries there now , Bass had a huge one in the centre but that has been converted to houses now They do however have a lot of social properties still , fishing lakes etc

    Report this comment

    iMac

    Tuesday, February 16, 2016

  • Hmm ...Brewer. There are not many breweries left in Burton upon Trent these days. I fear you might be harking back to times past . A bit like our own fine City really. Apart from a few microbreweries, there's no significant beer brewed in Norwich either. And Burton was not all roses. For a start ,they made that horrible stuff Marmite there (may still do for all I know.)

    Report this comment

    Rick

    Tuesday, February 16, 2016

  • Nice one el dingo; you beat me to it. Some of the pitches on Earlham Park are so steep, the players could take a break from topping up their tans to do a bit of hill running & abseiling. @Rick, I welcome the prospect of Burton Albion next season. The Brewers are in Town! Or City. Some of we Insiders will get free beer tickets... Coorporate Entertainments.

    Report this comment

    Mad Brewer

    Tuesday, February 16, 2016

  • The trouble is that his preferred defenders are no fans of crunching tackles either.

    Report this comment

    waclor

    Tuesday, February 16, 2016

  • I'm with AN to the extent that trying to work out what points other teams will pick up is a complete waste of time. Whatever our own failings 2 years ago, we also went down because Sunderland picked up ten pts towards the end of the season from games v Man U, Man C, Arsenal and Chelsea! No-one could have predicted that. Let's just worry about what we do, and to have a realistic chance of survival, we must be aiming to get to 40pts. That means 4 wins, 4 draws, 4 defeats from the last 12 games, and above all, no more missed opportunities like L'pool and W Ham. Like most people on here, I want to see Brady in midfield, Olsson at left back, and Martin nowhere near the pitch. Brady's goal just emphasised why he needs to be in midfield, and both Hammers goals came down Martin's flank. For whatever reason, AN sees it differently. He will do things his way, and we shall rise or fall on the outcome. I still don't see the true leaders (with the possible exception of Naismith) on the pitch that the situation requires. Sunderland's new signing Kone looks a real leader, and is already having an effect, and to me they look the most likely of the bottom 4 to survive. The only certainty is a lot more twists and turns over the next 3 months. OTBC

    Report this comment

    Alan Black's Back

    Tuesday, February 16, 2016

  • I agree there is no point in trying to work out what other teams may or may not do, we can only affect how we perform. I agree with many others in that we really need to put players in the correct positions but once again Wes is the enigma, we all know he plays best in the hole but likewise that is without doubt the best position for Naismith. We once again tried to accommodate both of them on Saturday by constantly switching the three attacking midfielders, including Redmond and in fact that contributed to us scoring twice. However, Naismith looked far worse than he had in his first game for us. Brady without doubt had a good game at left back but still showed that he is better when played as an attacking player on the left wing. Against Leicester, we will without doubt need to defend better or will get torn apart by their quick attacking play, therefore for me, we must play a back four that holds its position, or even a back five if we choose to try the three centre back option once more, that is the only way I can see attacking full backs as viable for that game.

    Report this comment

    TrevorKeith

    Tuesday, February 16, 2016

  • Regrettably, Alex, the fact is that it's these 'numbers' you so despise that will determine things on May 14th. Things like whether we are playing Man U or Burton Albion in August. Numbers such as your salary, and whether this time next year you'll be having training sessions in Abu Dhabi or Skegness. But he is right to the extent that things are still in our own hands . Frankly I do not expect much from the Leicester and Chelsea games. Anything from them will be a bonus. But then from Mar 5 to Apr 23 we have a run of seven games. The bottom line is that we need to win the majority of those fixtures . If we do, then the numbers will say we almost certainly stay up. If we don't ,we are down. Simple as.

    Report this comment

    Rick

    Tuesday, February 16, 2016

  • Dubai: Yes, Abu Dhabi for "warm weather training". Should have been the UEA!

    Report this comment

    el dingo

    Tuesday, February 16, 2016

  • I do wish that our Manager would crunch the numbers! Perhaps he might realise that a 1 point return fro a possible 18 is relegation form in even the most deluded optimist's book. Perhaps he might be startled into thinking the unthinkable and dropping Captain Undroppable . Perhaps he may reconsider the nonsense of playing players out of position. Perhaps I am being too harsh, but unless we hit a winning streak I cannot see where the points will come from because I AM a fan of crunching the numbers.

    Report this comment

    kenfoggo

    Tuesday, February 16, 2016

  • I think we can beat Leicester, but AN has to select the right players in the right positions, and most people like myself don't think he has been doing that in recent games. Any mention of the players being in UAE this week ?

    Report this comment

    Dubai Canary

    Tuesday, February 16, 2016

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