New injury blow for Grant

CHRIS LAKEY Canaries boss Peter Grant is facing a major selection headache after last night's agonising defeat at the City of Manchester Stadium.

CHRIS LAKEY

Canaries boss Peter Grant is facing a major selection headache after last night's agonising defeat at the City of Manchester Stadium.

Grant watched as his team came close to causing a major upset, only to be beaten by an 89th minute goal by Georgios Samaras.

But while Grant was delighted with the performance of his under strength side he now faces the loss of his only remaining central defender, Gary Doherty, for the visit of Sheffield Wednesday on Saturday.

Doherty picked up a groin injury during the first half and although he managed to finish the game he is a major doubt along with striker Darren Huckerby who missed out last night after sustaining an ankle injury in training on Monday.

“Gary Doherty could have come off at half time because he was struggling with his groin,” said Grant. “He continued on and that is the spirit you need.

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“But he is going to be struggling and that leaves me with three centre backs who won't be available.”

Grant is already without suspended central defenders Dion Dublin and Jason Shackell which meant a reshuffle last night and rare starts for Rossi Jarvis and Michael Spillane.

But the two Academy products turned in quality performances and Grant says they did enough to put their names in the frame for this weekend.

“I have no set rules about anybody coming in or what age they are,” said Grant. “Tonight they have come and played against very very good players and shown that they can play. I know they can play - but sometimes it can be cruel to put them in.”

City's performance went someway to erasing the memories of the dire performance at Wolves on Saturday.

“It was the complete opposite to the weekend said Grant. “They showed great character. We lost more players before the game and for the young players to come in and play as they did was very very pleasing.

“The only thing disappointing for me is the result. It is a cruel game. There are ways to lose games and if we are going to lose I would rather lose it that way.

“I am very very pleased with them - they showed great character and no little ability either.

“I thought we deserved more, I thought we looked more threatening, we moved the ball well and I thought we created chances and that is all you can ask for. If we had been a bit more greedy in the box we probably could have caused an upset, but I have to look at the big picture and the big picture was the performance and the response from the weekend.