Mark Bunn has plenty at stake in Norwich City’s Capital One Cup test
- Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd
Mark Bunn is under no illusions his short-term career prospects will be defined by Norwich City's Capital One Cup success ahead of Tuesday night's third round trip to Watford (7:45pm).
John Ruddy's return to full fitness after missing five months of last season following thigh surgery has limited Bunn's chance to impress Chris Hughton.
The 28-year-old pulled off some impressive stops in the 6-3 cup win over Bury last month and Bunn is ready to answer the call again at Vicarage Road.
'It is quite hard sometimes with it being so stop start. I played against Bury but then I have to bide my time again. That is the way football goes,' he said. 'You've got the reserve games as well if you need them but I work hard in training and I feel sharp. I just want to play as many games as I can which is why it is important to have a good cup run.
'I got a lot of games last season when John was injured so I'm looking forward to playing. It has been frustrating not to play but all I can do is show the manager what I can do when I get a chance. We have a big squad now and there is plenty of competition, which I am sure is what the manager wants. Those lads who play against Watford will want to show what they can do to push for a start at the weekend.'
Bunn has a healthy respect for the Hornets' prolific striker Troy Deeney, who has already notched six goals this season after firing Watford all the way to the Championship play-off final in May.
'They are a good team with a good manager so it will be tough,' said Bunn. 'Deeney has looked very good the last couple of seasons. He is a great player and the fact they won 5-1 at the weekend tells you how good the squad is. Hopefully we can keep it tight at the back and we can hit them at the other end.
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'No game is easy, you know that as a footballer, but the fact they are going so well in the Championship means we need to be right at it. I'm sure we can win and then have a decent run in this competition.'
The boyhood Tottenham fan revealed he will have plenty of local support in Hertfordshire and Bunn can also draw on happy memories from last season's dramatic late cup win over Spurs, when City struck twice in the last six minutes to win 2-1 at home.
'I used to live in Southgate, near Barnet which is just down the road really so I'll have a few family and friends coming to the game,' he said. 'My brother will be there and a few others. I'll probably need about ten tickets. It's good to have them. They tend to come to the games when they are local and I am playing. I needed about 20 tickets when we played Tottenham in this competition last year and on that night they didn't know who to cheer for, me or them. I played at Watford a couple of years ago when I was on loan at Sheffield United, but I didn't have any ties to them when I was a youngster.'
Bunn capped a memorable night against Tottenham 12 months ago by saving a penalty from Spurs' ex-midfielder Clint Dempsey.
City's back-up keeper confirmed the Canaries practised penalties yesterday with tonight's tie set to be decided on the night, but Bunn adopted a diplomatic stance over the spot kick fall out from the weekend 's Aston Villa defeat when Robert Snodgrass was denied by Brad Guzan.
'Snods felt like he could score, but the keeper has made a good save, these things happen but I know if Snods was required he would step up again,' said Bunn. 'Nothing was said in the dressing room afterwards. Sometimes you can miss.
'It was a disappointing day, but Watford is a chance to get the confidence going again. We did take a few penalties after training and I will be doing my homework on the Watford players as well.'