Joe Royle backs Norwich City’s Premier League survival bid

Joe Royle has backed Norwich City to survive in the Premier League next season.

Joe Royle has backed Norwich City to survive in the Premier League next season.

Former Norwich City stalwart Joe Royle is convinced the Canaries will survive in the Premier League this season.

Royle, who was briefly a football consultant as part of Neil Adams' backroom team 12 months ago prior to returning to first club Everton, is backing Alex Neil's squad to fare better than fellow new boys Bournemouth or Watford.

The 66-year-old ex-Toffees, Manchester City and Ipswich boss feels the Canaries can stay up.

'I really don't think they have anything to worry about. Everyone knows I have a soft spot for Norwich and even though they came up through the play-offs I think they are better equipped than possibly Bournemouth and Watford,' he said. 'They have players who know what the Premier League is all about. I really think it will be hard for the other two.

'Let's just give them some praise for getting there at this stage. Given the size of the clubs they are, they deserved their place. Both play great football, fast, attacking football and they merited promotion. They should go out and enjoy it and if either club were to survive it would be a terrific performance.'

City memorably ended Ipswich's promotion hopes last season during their triumphant march to winning the play-offs.

'Ipswich is another lovely club,' said Royle, speaking to Talksport. 'Without being too disrespectful it is a very ordinary division. It is a long time since we have seen anyone run away with that division and look different class. If you can get it right, as they did last season, then I think the play-offs are a realistic target.'