False start for Declan Rudd as he looks to impress old Norwich City boss Alex Neil at Preston
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Norwich City old boy Declan Rudd knows what he must do to impress Alex Neil after the pair were reunited at Championship rivals Preston.
Diss-bred Rudd was farmed out by Neil to Charlton last season when he fell out of favour following a brief spell as City number one.
The 26-year-old linked up with Simon Grayson at Deepdale earlier this summer, after a successful previous loan stint, but within days of his arrival Grayson departed for Sunderland.
Rudd is currently part of an Irish training camp at Fota Island, where the Canaries were based last week, but suffered a muscular injury on his pre-season debut.
The boyhood Norwich fan, however, hopes his prior knowledge of Neil’s methods boosts his chances of a start.
“I was fortunate enough to work with him for two and a half years at Norwich,” said Rudd. “I have the basis of everything he is trying to get across, which is good, because I know what he is about and how he likes to work.
“Most of his work right now is about getting his point across to the other boys, so I am not missing out too much on what he is trying to get over on the pitch, because I know how he works and what he wants and by the looks of things he is getting the lads working well. It is quite exciting to see how we will play once he gets control.”
Rudd’s untimely spell on the sidelines has one upside as he looks to settle in his new surroundings.
“I am also trying to find a house; I have viewed about ten already, so we are nearly there and hopefully that is sorted soon, but the main thing for me right now is getting fit as quickly as possible,” he told Preston’s official site. “I want to be as fit as possible as quickly as possible, but there is a fine line between that and doing it too quickly and not letting yourself heal properly and then making it worse, so I have to get that right.
“The medical department here are very good and are looking to get it sorted and I need to balance all that work with the off the field stuff.
“I was one minute into my first game back, I cleared the ball up the pitch and my quad went, which is not ideal. It’s football and its part and parcel of the job, but it wasn’t great and I was pretty upset and disappointed, because I was really excited to be back, playing here with the shirt.”