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Norwich City manager Alex Neil is up for a Premier League survival scrap

07:45 08 February 2016

Norwich City manager Alex Neil is up for the fight of keeping the Canaries in the Premier League.  
Picture by Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

Norwich City manager Alex Neil is up for the fight of keeping the Canaries in the Premier League. Picture by Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

©Focus Images Limited www.focus-images.co.uk +447814 482222

Alex Neil is ready for the fight of his footballing life to haul Norwich City to Premier League safety.

The Canaries’ were dragged into the relegation zone after a miserable 2-0 defeat at rock-bottom Aston Villa made it five consecutive top flight defeats.

“It has only been two and a half years since I became a manager so of course this is the toughest fight I have been in. I have been used to winning for that whole two years so when you come and start losing it is difficult to handle, it is difficult to deal with and it’s not nice,” said the City boss.

“You just want to make sure you fight and do everything in your power to turn it around. Ultimately you need your players to do that as well. They have to show that passion that everyone else has for the club.

“When I was a player I went out and fought tooth and nail and gave everything I had got until the whistle ends. You give everything you have in your body and if that is not enough then at least you can look yourself in the mirror and know you have done everything you can. Do it on the pitch where it matters. I know what type of men they are and how much they want to do well. You have to have enough fire in your belly. I am sick of coming out and saying the same things.”

Neil accepts the only way to prove the Canaries’ are Premier League quality is to end a wretched run of results.

“I can assure you there is nothing worse when we have lost than coming out and having to explain it because people think, ‘here he goes again,’” said Neil. “It is going to be a test for me and a test for the players now and this period until the end will dictate if we have enough as a group.

“We have to be brave, With the results we have had you are always going to be asking, ‘do we have enough?’ I would like to think the answer is yes.”

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30 comments

  • @gordentaylor- the most sensible post I have read in all the posts on articles since the Villa defeat.As for some of the other posts about bringing in a mentor for AN please go back to sleep and dream of something less stupid. I suspect a lot of the posters on here are frustrated because AN doesn't pick the team they want to see- a bit like Shearer and Gary Neville as pundits pulling apart teams and tactics of managers and players but not so successful when actually managing a team themselves. Bit like the MOGs and armchair pundits on here really

    Report this comment

    NoggintheNog

    Monday, February 8, 2016

  • We can do no worse at this stage than to return to the pre Newcastle tactics, use the new boys, allowing them enough time to bed into the team. Dropping them after a game or 2 doesn't give them time to to accustomise to either the PL nor the team's playing style. Nor does it give them confidence. Give forgotten man Bennett a chance alongside Klose, and bring Ruddy back from the cold. Finally appoint a strong captain on the field who can confidently act as the "on the pitch" manager during games - someone who's able to give motivation and indeed the odd telling off when deserved. Naismith perfectly fits that brief.

    Report this comment

    Honest Injun

    Monday, February 8, 2016

  • Lots of comments about poor team selection and chopping and changing. In AN defense ............ Jarvis out for lengthy period, central midfield O'Neill suspended for 3 games, Tettey now for 2. New players brought in to strengthen vulnerable defence...we'd all be complaining if that hadn't happened. Redmond form has dipped, Hoolahan inconsistent, Ruddy was 'making mistakes. Added to the fact that tactical team selections are very much part of a managers weaponry these days (25 man squads remember) and I'm not sure that its very fair to be blaming AN for changing the team. To me, we started the season well but the Newcastle defeat led to changes in tactics and there were plenty of people extolling the virtues of counter attacking football at the time. I think we're still try to get the balance right and maybe that's what's led to the inconsistency we're witnessing. Of course AN has plenty to learn, but come on, only a few months ago he was a hero. Lets just get behind him and the team and a couple of good results and the optimism will return OTBC

    Report this comment

    gordonltaylor

    Monday, February 8, 2016

  • …..Brew...hif youd constintray ted a bit orme at skoool ...jist tink how clever yood bre!….i SEE Steadyon is gradually exposing herself….Still making the tea on the team bus!...plenty of freebies with inside info in that job!... Wonder if Axle likes Tyneside tea bags or does he insist on the HA,HA blend at the beginning of the week and have a pot luck variety on Saturdays...OTBC as all good fans used to say!…..

    Report this comment

    Stew Pydsodd

    Monday, February 8, 2016

  • Couldn't fight there way out of a paper bag comes to mind!

    Report this comment

    repsol

    Monday, February 8, 2016

  • Custard - Monday - no training? Just a cup of tea , a biscuit, a quick chat about tactics , watch a video and then a quick rub down with a warm chammy? Luxury. Then a leisurely drive home in the Ferrari. Brilliant!

    Report this comment

    kenfoggo

    Monday, February 8, 2016

  • I iwhs d'i siad taht. Onesht.

    Report this comment

    Mad Brewer

    Monday, February 8, 2016

  • Marjorty off board members are only there to make money they are small local business men who don't care about the fans just want to make money .do one good thing Bloody should sell up after another mess up in the premireship.

    Report this comment

    City M

    Monday, February 8, 2016

  • @61canary, you must remember that Tommy is within the squad. He is a proper Insider. Hence the free tickets, corporate entertainment, gratis travel and unfettered access to the Message Boards. He is to be respected, you mere pleb. Trevor Keith deserves massive respect. He is never distracted by the torrents of tripe from the likes of me. He even tolerates total tvvats the likes of Tommy. That is Sainthood territory.

    Report this comment

    Mad Brewer

    Monday, February 8, 2016

  • Agree with Trevor Keith, Olsson should be starting every week in defence. Brady is a good player but Olsson is our best player in that position, good going forward too. Easy to criticise a manger going through the worst spell of his career. I think he has made some poor decisions but ultimately if given long enough will prove himself and turn the form around. We must stick with him. (Leicester had 6 points less than Norwich have now after the same number of games last season).

    Report this comment

    Johny

    Monday, February 8, 2016

  • Brilliant ! Made me laugh out loud.

    Report this comment

    Ole Tommy Buster Custard

    Monday, February 8, 2016

  • Custard, do they ever use a ball. xxx

    Report this comment

    61canarie

    Monday, February 8, 2016

  • 61C and Jorobit, the players won't be training today. It's classrooms and massage day - seriously, I'm not joking. Trackies on but no pitch training. Just a light work out (with no ball) !

    Report this comment

    Ole Tommy Buster Custard

    Monday, February 8, 2016

  • Agree with you JOROBIT. Similar to what I posted at the weekend, only I went a bit further in suggesting that from now until the end of the season, the players get one day off and train twice a day with a break for a light lunch. They are obviously not learning enough with the present coaching. They are lucky they don't have to run up and down Mousehold all day as the players did under Ron Saunders.

    Report this comment

    61canarie

    Monday, February 8, 2016

  • I would suggest that after training today Alex, his side kicks, and all the players have a behind closed doors meeting no holds barred discussion, so that he understands the players dissatisfaction when certain individuals are picked to play regardless of their recent poor form or others are put into positions they clearly are not good at, at the expense of the natural position players! Then, whatever has been said, needs to be put away and not having grudges held for giving honest opinions! But, I fear our manager, and I've got nothing against him, is a pig- headed type of guy who will not admit when he is wrong, and that will eventually spell disaster for the club.

    Report this comment

    JOROBIT

    Monday, February 8, 2016

  • City M. aka Stanley Unwin. When can we expect your appointment to the Board.

    Report this comment

    61canarie

    Monday, February 8, 2016

  • please lets not start blaming the manage, lets get behind him and the team and try to give them something to play for, not that they need that really, playing in the premier league for Norwich City should be insentive enough. I cannot get tickets anymore because Norwich City are well over subscibed to, but when I've listened to the radio, read articles, or in conversation with work colleagues it seems same old Norwich different year. I keep hearing City didn't turn up, they seem nervous, lack confidence, I cannot comprehend this, especially from a side who beat Man Utd at Old Trafford, come you players get your fingers out and start playing for Norwich City and all those loyal fans who spend their hard earnt cash and who turn up week after week to support you, you owe them something if not the club, we keep hearing you've got the skill now show it, the proof of the pudding is in the eating, now get out there and start playing football you whimps!!!!!!!

    Report this comment

    KP

    Monday, February 8, 2016

  • City M are you being serious?

    Report this comment

    rikki nadir

    Monday, February 8, 2016

  • Yes, Alex Neil we have heard what your mantra is. The problem you have is that you mess about with players and squad, Your inexperience shines through above your commitment, What you really need is an experienced old head to help you establish yourself as a manager. This cannot wait until August, in the Championship. The help is needed now. You will no doubt lose many of the good players you have now if you continue the way you are. Being stubborn is not a strength, just another weakness. You do not have the ability or experience to manage a Premier Club on your own. For heavens sake man, YOU NEED HELP>

    Report this comment

    willb

    Monday, February 8, 2016

  • The board should have not signed a rookie manager because he had one good season in Scotland what the earth they where thinking just don't know ,what they are where doing but for going for a cheap option its same old story with this board only think of the amount of money it would cost for a top manager.only got them selves to blame one step forward and then destroy it by going backwards never learn never will.

    Report this comment

    City M

    Monday, February 8, 2016

  • Easy to say AN but while keep make bad team choices and playing players out of there normal playing position and they can't perform your in a mess . And sad to say are on a one way ticket to the championship but also the board have to take a lot of the blame for the mess the club are in.

    Report this comment

    City M

    Monday, February 8, 2016

  • OTBC, as one of the home supporters who only listened to the game on local radio Saturday, I can only bow to your on the spot assessments. I actually posted yesterday that I think we should bring in a director of football, such as Hoddle, Wilkins etc. as I think Alex needs a bit of help. I was also one stating after the Spurs game that I would reinstate Martin at right back because he can play well their. My biggest disappointment with team selection was to see Olsson dropped yet again and Mulumbu retained. Yes I was one calling for him to be played against Liverpool when I saw Tettey was ill but last Tuessday, he clearly showed he was not up to the job, neither I fear is O'neil as a single defensive mid as he is not the greatest of headers, whereas Tettey often drops into the back line to cover when both full back go forward. You are right in that we all need to get behind the team and support the manager but it is very hard when the team look totally flat and uninterested. I by the way have no problem supporting a championship team if that is our destiny, I just ask that the players we have give their all.

    Report this comment

    TrevorKeith

    Monday, February 8, 2016

  • Does it matter if AN is up for it if the 11 players on the pitch are not?? From Saturday this looked like the case to me. I am positive in that there are 39 points to play for so will have to see what sort of fight they players have in them. Starting this Saturday !

    Report this comment

    city meister

    Monday, February 8, 2016

  • AN, the coaching staff and players are all in this together. Or they should be. However I wonder if everyone is pulling in the same direction? AN and his coaches appear to be making a lot of puzzling decisions regarding player positions. They experiment every week with the team and tactics creating a lack of any continuity. And seemingly are obsessed with trying to negate the opposition when we should be making them worry about us. However, once on the pitch how many of these players have the heart for the fight? Do we have leaders on the pitch? Do we have a captain who leads by example and who bosses the team, especially making sure everyone does their defensive duties? I am hard put to say yes to any of these questions, sadly.

    Report this comment

    malaga flier

    Monday, February 8, 2016

  • Strong sentiments from Alex but not many of the players seem to have "bought into" this. As I have said before if there is a bottle of the ForbesStringerMackayHolt spirit anywhere in Carrow Road -get it opened asap...........

    Report this comment

    Diss man

    Monday, February 8, 2016

  • Russ and Seb had decent games, therefore I expect to see them v West Ham. Wes and Redderz should be crucified as Whitts has been. Klose's epic mistake. Sell him back to Wolfsberg. Sorry Dec, but the ciggies have caused you to wheez a little too much. Ta-ra. Alex could do worse than play the Play-Off XI (-ish)

    Report this comment

    Ole Tommy Buster Custard

    Monday, February 8, 2016

  • All the right words again AN but I'm afraid the evidence over the past few weeks contradicts the headline and the patience of the fans with the manager and the team is wearing thin. The fans are totally confused with ANs team selections and the consistent chopping and changing of the team. Players who play reasonable we'll get dropped after one performance yet some players who play badly week after week are retained. This way of management is dragging the club down along with the fans and indeed the players.

    Report this comment

    VictorM

    Monday, February 8, 2016

  • The board would never have allowed AN to spend in January if they planned to get rid of him. He's here to stay. That may or may not be a good thing. Experience tells me we won't make it cos neither the board or too many of the players appear to have the hunger for survival.

    Report this comment

    el dingo

    Monday, February 8, 2016

  • Irrespective of whether our manager is 'up for a survival scrap' or not he has now got it! There are as I have said previously on radio Five reasons why the Canaries are a unique club, Talking time ceases - pulling on the yellowgreen shirt means you are fighting for every one of those reasons- and take it literally it's WIN OR DIE!'

    Report this comment

    mardler

    Monday, February 8, 2016

  • Again, honest down to the core, but the sad pathetic MOG's will hang you out to dry I'm afraid. It's their only coping method. Standard Monday MOG's. C'mon, lets be havin' ya ! 100 comments by lunchtime when we lose. 10 when we win !

    Report this comment

    Ole Tommy Buster Custard

    Monday, February 8, 2016

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

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