Home is where the heart is for Norwich City’s Mike Phelan

Mike Phelan has fond memories of Norwich City. Picture: Canaries.co.uk

Mike Phelan has fond memories of Norwich City. Picture: Canaries.co.uk - Credit: Archant

Norwich City's new first team coach Mike Phelan admits it feels like coming home after signing up for the Canaries' Championship promotion push.

Phelan was officially unveiled on Thursday after his first training session back at the club where he spent four years as a player in a spell that saw City promoted from the second tier.

The former Manchester United assistant boss revealed he turned down offers elsewhere before opting for a return to the game in Norfolk.

'There were a couple more before this one and it felt right,' he said. 'I am a patient guy deep down but there is only so much gardening you can do at home and so many lunches and you have to get back to work. This was a great offer. When I first left United I decided I wanted at least 12 months out of the game. That got extended a little bit because things change in football. I've started to get a little bit of a smell for it again and you get out watching games, talking to people again, and then you just have to wait.

'I just felt when you have a connection to a place, as a player, and the four or five years that I was here were some of the best I have had.

'I enjoyed living in the area. My family were born here as well, but different challenges came up and now I have an opportunity to come back and use the last 25 years or so the best way I can because there is potential here.'

Phelan made 194 appearances for the Canaries before joining the Red Devils where he was part of the squad that won the club's first Premier League title in 1993.

Most Read

'I came down here as a young, free spirit for a year and then I got married and my wife came down with me and we have survived through it all and she is coming back down again,' he said. 'The children are all grown up and they are looking forward to it because they will be re-introduced to a place they probably don't remember because they were so young when we moved on. It's a great opportunity for my family to go back to the start of a journey that is not yet finished.'