Fleming hoping for a night to remember

Canaries stalwart Craig Fleming believes Newcastle United will give him a night to remember next week - as well as making a valuable contribution towards City's preparations for the new season.

Canaries stalwart Craig Fleming believes Newcastle United will give him a night to remember next week - as well as making a valuable contribution towards City's preparations for the new season.

The Geordies are in town next Wednesday night for Fleming's testimonial match - and the 34-year-old is sure that along with making it a very special occasion, Glenn Roeder's team will provide a better test for City than Inter Milan did a year ago.

“It will be a massive night for me and I'm really looking forward to it,” he said. “My family are too and it will be a special night for all of us.

“Milan last year didn't really prepare us for the Championship,” he said. “Milan got the ball and kept it for 20 minutes then we got it and they didn't really press us. Newcastle will be different - it will be a lot more physical.


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“It will be a physical game and it's probably what we need going into the Championship.”

While Fleming wants to play on for as long as possible, he is preparing for the day when the boots are packed away for the last time.

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“There's bit and bobs I've got in mind,” he said. “Ideally, I would like to stay in football, that's something I would love to do. I think I've got a lot to offer coaching wise. I've been in the game for 20 years now so ideally that's what I would want to do. I will probably stay in Norfolk too, unless something dramatic happens.”

Fleming has started more than 600 games signing pro terms with Halifax in March, 1990 - and attributes it to one thing.

“It's all down to hard graft,” said Fleming, currently in Scotland for City's pre-season tour. “I think football has changed now. It used to be that you'd get to 30 and people started to think about retiring. But now the fitness has improved so much as a defender you probably reach your peak at 30.

“You look at the likes of Sheringham, Strachan and Southgate. When you get older, the temptation is to do less and look after yourself that way. But Strachan said he did it the other way round, and that's how I've been. I've always tried to do a little bit more each year. The older I get the harder I work.”

Fleming's testimonial is next Wednesday, kick-off 7.45pm. Tickets are £15 for adults and £10 concessions in Jarrold Stand centre seating and the City Stand lounges. All other seating is priced at £12 for adults, £7 concessions and £3 for under-12s.

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