No more 'Mr Nice Guys'

CHRIS LAKEY It's no more Mr Nice Guy at Norwich City from now on as Glenn Roeder lays down the law at Carrow Road. The new City boss says the gloves are off as far as City's image among the rest of the Championship is concerned.

CHRIS LAKEY

It's no more Mr Nice Guy at Norwich City from now on as Glenn Roeder lays down the law at Carrow Road.

The new City boss says the gloves are off as far as City's image among the rest of the Championship is concerned.

“I want to ban that word nice,” said Roeder. “It drives me mad, everyone is flipping nice. It's the truth - but it's a nuisance.”

Roeder heads for Plymouth this afternoon knowing that his biggest concerns are out on the pitch where he is without three of his most senior players - Dion Dublin, Darren Huckerby and Adam Drury - as City seek to record their first win away from home since last April.

So important is Dublin to the City dressing room that, even though he misses the match with a hamstring problem, he could make the 680-mile round trip to the south-west.

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“Talking is such an important part of playing football and creating a good team spirit and good bonding,” he said.

“Dublin without a doubt is the shining example of a couple more characters you would like similar to what he has got.

“I will be speaking to Dion - when he is injured I still want him to be with us, be around the dressing room because he is such an important member of the squad. Even when he is injured he can play an important part by just being there because he is so highly respected.”

Roeder is still concerned at the lack of other voices and has challenged the other players to step up to the plate in times of crisis.

“We are a quiet squad, there is no doubt about that,” said Roeder. “Looking at players as well as looking at their ability you are trying to look for players that are leaders, who will come in a dressing room and speak and if things are not how they should be they will say.

“Constructive criticism is very much part of the dressing room, otherwise if players make mistakes and they know their team-mates don't say anything to them they know they can keep getting away with it.

“I know I will pick up on it and (coach) Lee (Clark) will I am sure. It doesn't always have to be experience. The biggest example started his career at Norwich. Bellamy, at 16 I'm told he was what he is now. Whatever you say about Bellers he gives you the impression he wants to win at all times - even to the point of not having lots and lots of friends around the dressing room.”

Roeder is already making his presence felt at Norwich: he showed John Hartson the door on Thursday and has now cut out a comfort zone in the training schedule.

“We have changed the time of training from 10 to 10.30,” he said. “I just felt training at 11am was ridiculously late, it's too comfortable. Crikey, most people have done half a day's work by 11. I know half hour is only half an hour but it's the principle, we'll start work at half 10.”