Law of the jungle suits Norwich City in Championship dogfight

Gary Hooper made a crucial intervention to beat Bolton in Norwich City's pursuit of promotion to the

Gary Hooper made a crucial intervention to beat Bolton in Norwich City's pursuit of promotion to the Premier League. Picture by Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd - Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

Alex Neil is convinced he has the big beasts to haul Norwich City back into Premier League contention.

The Canaries' Championship charge stalled after a 1-0 home defeat to rivals Middlesbrough but Neil is backing City's squad to have the final say ahead of pivotal league games against Rotherham and Fulham.

Neil is confident he has every base covered within the Norwich dressing room as he plots the Canaries' promotion assault.

'We have players who are used to playing in these games. We have quality players here who can make a difference even if we are not playing well,' said Neil. 'That is what makes the big games exciting because there is an unpredictability to the outcome.

'Whether the lads start or come on there is just the one goal. You look at Gary Hooper. He probably has been frustrated not to be involved more but he came on and scored at Bolton and that could still be a turning point. We have big-game players, lads who have played at a top, top level. Gary has got Champions League experience, John Ruddy (inset) has been involved with England, so we have boys who have been at the top end of football, played in the Premier League, and know what is required to go on and win these type of crucial games.'

City may need favours from the likes of Watford, Bournemouth and Middlesbrough to snatch an automatic promotion spot but Neil knows goal difference could still be a factor in the tightest Championship promotion race for years.

'At this stage it is about wins. If it comes down to goal difference then so be it but I don't think you can take your eye off the ball and concentrate on trying to score goals before you have won the game,' he said. 'If you get sidetracked and think we have to go gung-ho that can cost you in the long run.

Most Read

'Our sole purpose is to try and win the games, not score four or five. If we can do that and get goals as well then great.'

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter