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Alex Neil - The best is yet to come from Dieumerci Mbokani at Norwich City

Norwich City's on-loan striker Dieumerci Mbokani's goalscoring display in the 2-0 Premier League win over Aston Villa drew praise from Alex Neil. 
Picture by Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

Norwich City's on-loan striker Dieumerci Mbokani's goalscoring display in the 2-0 Premier League win over Aston Villa drew praise from Alex Neil. Picture by Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

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Alex Neil hailed Dieumerci Mbokani’s starring role in Norwich City’s vital 2-0 Premier League win against relegation-threatened Aston Villa.

The on-loan striker capped a marauding display at Carrow Road with a late match-clinching header, following Jonny Howson’s first half strike, to seal a priceless victory for the Canaries.

City moved three points clear of the bottom three after moving onto 20 points at the halfway stage of the season.

“Mbokani was the stand-out player for me. I thought he was fantastic for us,” said Neil. “He really led the line, took the ball in, and got his goal. I thought Declan Rudd was excellent in goal and my two centre-backs dealt with their players well, but it is hard to lead that line. Dieumerci is more than capable of doing it and he did it great for us.

“He has been a bit unfortunate in that he has played in some difficult matches. I put him in at Chelsea and he probably didn’t do as well as we would have liked, but he was playing against John Terry and Kurt Zouma by himself and that is not easy.

“He can be a real handful for us and this was the perfect game. He did more than I could ask from him so I was really, really chuffed. I think he’ll be a real force for us in the second half of the season. He has three goals from six starts now, which is a good return, and if he continues to play like that he’ll be fine.”

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26 comments

  • Mad B, yes Mbokani is 30, but looks fit enough to give us a couple of seasons, given that he relies on strength, ball control and reading the game, rather than blistering pace. As for D Kyiv's finances... my understanding is that the whole of Ukrainian football has been struggling to survive since the Crimean crisis, and they were in no position to pay the full fee to Anderlecht upfront. I'm particularly disappointed with Mulumbu, I was expecting him to be really challenging Tettey, but then I'm equally pleased to discover that O'Neil can keep going for 90 mins. At least his other qualities were never in question.

    Report this comment

    Reg Breeze

    Wednesday, December 30, 2015

  • Reg, I read somewhere that MBok's fee was only €3m (£2m-ish). So it is a bit surprising that Kiev chickened out of paying it all upfront. My info may be flawed - I'm no insider - probably stuff from Wiki. Big Dave has turned 30. Will that be seen as "too old"? Or now the eternally youthful Hyacinth has sloughed off one of his plentiful Directorships, has 30 become OK? We should ask Holty. Totally agree with all your comments ref Dorrans, O'Neil, Mulumbu, Tettey & Redmond. We have some good, if unspectacular, midfielders now. A spectacular one could make all the difference. Martin Peters, where's your clone? ITMIT. COYY.

    Report this comment

    Mad Brewer

    Wednesday, December 30, 2015

  • Yes, PaulWho, and the Watford game. Anyone might have scored that goal, it's not like Grabban created it; and his overall effectiveness is way below Jerome and Mbokani. For those who keep advocating that we sign Mbokani permanently, we wanted to do that in the summer, but Dynamo Kyiv couldn't sell him, because they haven't completed paying Anderlecht for him. Peter Watson, I agree about Redmond playing on the right flank, when he's selected at all; but not Mulumbu, both he and Dorrans look rather poor compared to O'Neil and Tettey. Whilst I agree that Redmond only delivers in patches, we have noone else with his pace for the right flank. I would play him as an impact sub more often; make him 'hungry'. and possibly lower his self-opinion?

    Report this comment

    Reg Breeze

    Wednesday, December 30, 2015

  • MC., I agree totally re Redmond, we're now halfway through the season, and the promise we expected from him, he hasn't shown, he hasn't really offered any more than what he displayed last season. Occasionally he has a decent spell, but this is short lived. Sell him, he's no better than what we already have.

    Report this comment

    Sanjeev

    Tuesday, December 29, 2015

  • Have always thought Mbokani should have been given more starts to show what he is capable of. He really ties up defenders and moves them out wide, but unfortunately no one runs in to fill the center for him when he does this, and he gets little support. This is where i think Redmond,s days at NCFC are done. He is not reading the game well, and i see him as a bit lazy and selfish. He is not developing much. Time to cash in. Defensively he adds nothing, and we are a team where everyone needs to work hard and give 110 percent. Don't think we would miss him.

    Report this comment

    MichiganCanary

    Tuesday, December 29, 2015

  • Erpingham I was thinking Bamford on loan may be a good shout. He's definitely one for the future and when fit his all round game is excellent. Grabban and Lafferty must be heading for the door you would think. I hope AN plays the same side on Saturday. O'Neil may come if for Dorrans but otherwise is there a need to change anyone?

    Report this comment

    OTFBC

    Tuesday, December 29, 2015

  • Michigan: Redmond and Dorrans looked a little lazy yesterday (it's the way they are) but I can assure you the guys earned their corn. Mbokani, Brady and Rudd were outstanding imo.

    Report this comment

    el dingo

    Tuesday, December 29, 2015

  • Irongloves: good point! (I'd love Naismith here and I guess I'm still hopeful)

    Report this comment

    el dingo

    Tuesday, December 29, 2015

  • One of our Jan buys needs to be a real "on the field and in the dressing room" personality who can take the captains arm band and lead by example. RM is a nice guy, loyal to the club, but we need a real driving force captain to drive the team on the field and get more out of the team as a whole than the sum of the parts. Only way we can do well with the players we can afford. I feel some on the field are not giving everything at the moment.

    Report this comment

    MichiganCanary

    Tuesday, December 29, 2015

  • El Dingo, you may be right but Everton have a Home game on the 3rd January when he could say goodbye to the fans,or perhaps he just doesn't like them.

    Report this comment

    irongloves

    Tuesday, December 29, 2015

  • Naismith played against Stoke yesterday and said no goodbyes to the Evertonians. I doubt he's coming to us, unfortunately. As you say, what a great bloke he is outside the game.

    Report this comment

    el dingo

    Tuesday, December 29, 2015

  • Hola Spanish - looks like you're taking on board the local opinions of the Portuguese:-):-):-)

    Report this comment

    el dingo

    Tuesday, December 29, 2015

  • Steven Naismith would be a great buy in my book, proven in the Prem and seems an all round good chap. Pinto may turn out to be a bit of a one trick Pony or god forbid a Donkey.

    Report this comment

    spanishcanary

    Tuesday, December 29, 2015

  • Reg Breeze, do you mean the game where Grabban scored against Arsenal?

    Report this comment

    PaulWho

    Tuesday, December 29, 2015

  • Ivo pinto at right back anyone? He's the latest name being bandied about. Steven Naismith would be perfect fit. Afobe? Sell, Laffs, RvW, Hoops, Turner, Grabben Dorrans. Also, a quality CB. Priority.

    Report this comment

    canarytrev

    Tuesday, December 29, 2015

  • He was excellent yesterday - I fear the Big Dave nickname is catching on:-)

    Report this comment

    el dingo

    Tuesday, December 29, 2015

  • Mbokani needs Redmond on the right,not the left, supplying the ammunition and Malumbu,his DR Congo international captain, behind him.Dare I dream,Naismith would make a perfect foil.Just keep feeding him and he will score.Sign him up.

    Report this comment

    Peter Watson

    Tuesday, December 29, 2015

  • He bullies defenders, holds up the ball well, peels away from the defender to give Wes a proper target, I could be writing about Grant Holt in 2011! Give Mbokani an extended run and buy for the back four.

    Report this comment

    GolfingCanary

    Tuesday, December 29, 2015

  • I have been very supportive of AN's mixing up to the line up policy, but I think it's time to give a Mbokani a real run in the team. Also, with him and CJ up front they could be a real handful. I wouldn't expect it every game, but I think Villa where the team to try that out on. I don't see another striker coming in unless another leaves, which would suggest Grabban or poor old Lafferty, who must be wondering what he's doing here at the moment.

    Report this comment

    MellowYellow

    Tuesday, December 29, 2015

  • I wonder if there is a plan to make Mbokani's move permanent, either in January or the Summer? Not sure if Bamford is the answer but a loan deal would let us find out, especially if we can shift Grabben, Lafferty off the payroll. I suspect Hooper might also move on, in the Summer if not January and RvW seems to be running down his contract (does it run out in Summer 2016?). In theory this leaves us several striker positions to be filled.

    Report this comment

    ScotCan

    Tuesday, December 29, 2015

  • It looks like Patrick Bamford could be available. Now, he is someone I think would be able to do everything an 'Alex Neil' forward is asked to do. And only 22.

    Report this comment

    Erpingham Tractor

    Tuesday, December 29, 2015

  • Think mbokani would do even better if we played two up front,he does hold the ball up well but he's not a player who can run at defenders or sprint to get into the box.Dont know whether he could play with Jerome or not but would be interesting to see,especially when wes is off form.Interesting that Afobe did not celebrate the wolves goals yesterday..............is he coming to CR?

    Report this comment

    tonyb

    Tuesday, December 29, 2015

  • Dont think Mbokani has had a decent run yet and looks like he can do a job for us. We all keep saying we need a new striker in Jan but unless we are going to buy an up and coming younger (dembele-fulham) type striker I see no point in buying any older 4 million pound strikers as we already have half decent players now and dont need any more clogging up the bench.

    Report this comment

    Jimhow

    Tuesday, December 29, 2015

  • Indeed Reg and interesting to see he wasn't even on the bench yesterday!! Let's hope we've seen the last of Grabban playing for the first team.

    Report this comment

    Mr Ed

    Tuesday, December 29, 2015

  • One has to ask AN, given Mbokani's potential and CJ's high energy performances, why on earth did he ever start with Grabban a few games back???

    Report this comment

    Reg Breeze

    Tuesday, December 29, 2015

  • Yes, you could see he was a real handful for the Villa defenders and the only way they could effectively stop him was by committing a foul on him - several of which went unpunished by the match officials. I was hoping we might have played with 2 up front for the last few minutes yesterday, but AN decided otherwise. Certainly looking forward to seeing him in the starting 11 more regularly.

    Report this comment

    Mr Ed

    Tuesday, December 29, 2015

The views expressed in the above comments do not necessarily reflect the views of this site

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