Canaries will warm to Valley challenge

CHRIS LAKEY Peter Grant insists his players won't freeze when they take on Alan Pardew's Charlton rich kids at The Valley. Pardew, with parachute money plus £16.5m from the sale of Daren Bent at his disposal, has wheeled and dealed in south London and produced a squad which oozes Premiership experience as he attempts to get the Addicks back into the top flight at the first attempt.

CHRIS LAKEY

Peter Grant insists his players won't freeze when they take on Alan Pardew's Charlton rich kids at The Valley.

Pardew, with parachute money plus £16.5m from the sale of Daren Bent at his disposal, has wheeled and dealed in south London and produced a squad which oozes Premiership experience as he attempts to get the Addicks back into the top flight at the first attempt.

But Grant says his players, buoyed by a gritty 1-0 win over Crystal Palace at the weekend, will thrive on the prospect of taking on the promotion favourites in their own back yard.


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“Big players want to play in big atmospheres, that's what the game is all about,” he said. “We're a big club, people tend to forget that. Being a big club you want to be winning big games, whether it is home or away, it doesn't make any difference.

“We have 25,000 fans near enough here every week so going to Charlton doesn't hold any fears in any shape or form, that is a fact. I would love to be going to play Brazil in the Maracana - that's the way you are as a player; you want to play in the biggest atmospheres and the best places.

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“It doesn't scare you, they are the ones you look forward to.

“As a footballer you should look forward to every day never mind every game because we are very fortunate people, it's the best job in the world bar none.

“Every game you should be grabbing by the throat saying, 'what an opportunity to go and perform for myself and for the club' and that is the way we will be looking at it.

“It is a great place to go and play, the Valley has always had a good atmosphere and we want to go there and win. We go there to win - and getting another away victory would be very nice. We have done it at tough places before and we can do it at tough places again.”

Charlton are fifth in the table, four points behind leaders Watford, but just one ahead of City - a sign, says Grant, of the growing quality in the second tier of English football.

“You look at the table and results week in, week out and nothing surprises me, everybody is capable of beating each other,” he said.

“Would anybody have thought Scunthorpe would have gone, first game of the season, to Charlton and got a draw?

“You see Bristol City coming from the division below and for a period at the weekend they sat top.

“It shows you the standards you are up against in the Championship, and Charlton are no exception either.”

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