Arsenal loanee Lansbury won’t let sentiment get in way of Norwich City’s cause
Midfielder Henri Lansbury will always be grateful to Watford manager Malky Mackay for the part he played in his learning process as a first-team player but the Arsenal loanee won't hesitate in trying to banish the Hornets' play-off hopes this evening.
Lansbury enjoyed his time under Mackay during a loan spell at Vicarage Road last season but he is determined to help City re-establish their grip on the second automatic promotion spot with victory tonight.
'They gave me a chance to play and I'm grateful for that but I'm at Norwich now so I will be doing everything I can to get the three points,' said Lansbury, who came back into the Canaries' starting XI at Swansea due to Wes Hoolahan's hamstring problem.
'I still keep in contact with a few of the lads and there's been a fair amount of banter flying about. It will be good to get back and see them all but the most important thing is three points for us.
'I really enjoyed working under Malky – he's been there and done it all. He taught me a lot and showed me that I can play week in, week out.
'I'm really grateful that I got that chance.'
The Hornets must win to keep alive any realistic hope of staging a late rally for a top six place and they will be looking to Championship top goalscorer Danny Graham for inspiration.
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The 25-year-old bagged a brace during the Hornets' 3-2 win against City on the opening day of the season and Lansbury admitted the Norwich back four will have to keep a close eye on him.
'He's a great striker, a great finisher and a great person all round. He's showed this season how good he is and it's up to us to stop him.
'Watford are a great team but we want to pick ourselves up after the defeat at Swansea.
'We've got a great team spirit and we've had that for the whole season. We've just got to keep that going now.'
Lansbury wants to use tonight's assignment to forget about the Canaries' travails in Wales and hopes Norwich's impressive travelling support can make themselves heard.
'The (Swansea) game has gone now so we've got to forget about it. We have to move on to Tuesday now.
'We need to start brightly and we will be looking to our supporters again.
'They have been great the whole season and it's been like having a 12th man on the pitch. Hopefully they can keep that going.'
Lansbury admitted the squad is desperate to see Hoolahan return from injury after the Irishman was so sorely missed at the Liberty Stadium.
'He is a great player and I think that we miss him. When he's back he will be a great asset to the team.'
Arsenal have been sending scouts to check on the progress of Lansbury to every game and the Gunners are apparently pleased with his performances.
'They said that I'm doing well so I want to keep that going and keep getting good feedback,' added Lansbury, whose substitute appearance in the 6-0 win against Scunthorpe reminded fans of the quality he possesses.