Alex Neil is out to prove the doubters wrong at Norwich City

Norwich City manager Alex Neil still has total belief his players will prove their Premier League cl

Norwich City manager Alex Neil still has total belief his players will prove their Premier League class. Photo: Nigel French/PA Wire. - Credit: PA

Alex Neil insists Norwich City will prove the doubters wrong who claim they are out of their depth after a heavy Premier League loss at Southampton.

The Scot accepts fresh questions may be asked about him and his newly-promoted squad after a painful televised 3-0 defeat on the south-coast ahead of the international break.

'The squad can cope with this level and we can give a good account of ourselves,' he said. 'It is not my aim or that of the squad just to merely survive. We want to attack the league and see where that takes us. The bottom line is I am here to do a job. I believe I am capable and it is not just as if someone has handed this to me. When I came in we were seventh but we deserved to go up and I am enjoying the challenge.'

Neil does not feel any extra pressure from being the youngest Premier League manager, at the age of 34, or flying the flag for his country as Scotland's only top flight representative.

'I don't think about it. I'm sure there will be people in Scotland who are happy I am representing the country but it wasn't that long ago we had five or six,' he said. 'I think things happen in cycles. There has been a spell now where there is a lot of young managers coming through in Scotland and England. That is the cycle that hopefully continues and gives more young managers an opportunity.'

City were on the back foot for long spells at St Mary's, with John Ruddy producing a series of saves, and Norwich's number one echoes Neil's warning they must adapt quickly to the new reality.

'We have to accept against some teams we won't have the lion's share of possession and it will be about what we do without the ball,' he said. 'That is a contrast to last season, perhaps when you could get away with not having it for a little bit. Being patient, disciplined and organised are three things we work on and need to be good at, particularly at the big stadiums.'

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