Norwich City new boy Steven Naismith fit to make debut against Liverpool
Copyright Archant Norfolk 2016
Steven Naismith says he is ready and raring to go for his Norwich City debut against Liverpool tomorrow, if he is called upon by Canaries boss Alex Neil.
The Scotland international forward joined City from Everton in a deal reportedly worth around £8million earlier this week but had not featured in any of Everton’s last five matches.
Toffees boss Roberto Martinez had said the 29-year-old was struggling with an ankle knock but Naismith said he has trained this week and is available.
“I’ve had a thing that’s going on for a couple of months but I just wanted to make sure it was right,” the former Rangers and Kilmarnock attacker said.
“I was meant to be training at Everton on Monday but things changed, I trained down here Wednesday when everything was finalised and I’m raring to go.”
Naismith played against his new manager when Neil was a Hamilton player and the Scot believes his compatriot will be well aware of how to get the best out of his abilities.
“He knows what my attributes are and hopefully I’ll bring an attacking threat and hopefully some chances and goals,” he continued.
“He wants me to just play like I have done for Everton and obviously he’s known me for a long time so I’m confident he knows what I can bring to the team and just go and help Norwich progress, as they have done under him from when he took over.”
Naismith came close to a switch to Norwich last summer but Everton pulled the plug on the deal after failing to sign a replacement.
After completing the much-anticipated deal earlier in the week, the forward was pleased to get his future sorted, having signed a three-and-a-half-year contract.
“I think last summer when it came about I’d still had a good part at Everton the season before so it was a difficult decision to make but it was never really in my hands in terms of getting to go because the manager wanted to keep me,” Naismith continued.
“But as the season has unveiled itself, my time on the pitch was limited so the decision on my part was easy, I wanted to be playing football and Norwich were great in the way they pursued me obviously from the summer and they still wanted me in the January and thankfully the move happened and I can get back to playing football.
“For me personally the family side of things was tricky at the moment, with having a new baby (due in March) and things like that, so it was just trying to work out what life was going to be like from here until the summer.
“The long term came from a lot of players who have been at Norwich over the years, who said it’s a lovely part of the country to live and it’s a great football club, so that side of it was okay, but we sat down and worked things out and I’m delighted to be here.”