Norwich City belief will be key for Bolton visit, says Andrew Surman
Andrew Surman admits the belief that has turned Norwich City into a Premier League outfit will be key when they step out against rejuvenated Bolton Wanderers at Carrow Road on Saturday (3pm).
While Owen Coyle's strugglers have picked up four points from home games against Arsenal and Liverpool heading into their trip to Norfolk, Norwich boss Paul Lambert will be looking for a response from his City squad after a Wednesday night to forget on Wearside.
The 3-0 defeat at Sunderland was a rare off-night for the Canaries, but Surman acknowledged 11th-placed City cannot afford a repeat against the side sitting one place and two points off the Premier League relegation zone.
'Belief is a massive part of our game really – we believe we should be here and we don't want to get too over the top about one result,' said the 25-year-old.
'It was a disappointing one, and a disappointing performance, but we believe that we can stay in this league and on our day compete with any one is this league, so we have got to make sure we are on it on Saturday and make sure we make the most of it.
'I think we've performed against every team in the Premier League so far. I don't think there has ever really been a team where we've played them and thought, 'Oh blimey, we've arrived in the Premier League'. I think we have competed with everyone and like I say, Wednesday was just really disappointing.
'But we don't want to go deep into it. We are not going to get our heads down. We know what we have got to so and we know the standards we have set – and we know at Sunderland that wasn't good enough.
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'It's not a low point in our season or anything like that. We're still doing well in the league and we know if we push on now for the rest of the this season then we will stay up.
'We have just got to look forward to Saturday now, and try to put this behind us. Sunderland was a bad result, not a great performance and we have got to put that right.'
More than 800 City fans made the long midweek trip north for a game televised live, and for little reward.
But the evening was still worthy of both context and perspective – and Surman hopes Saturday will see the Canaries make up for their Sunderland failure.
'It was fantastic support up there,' added Surman. 'Wednesday night, all the way up to the north east – it was fantastic and I'm sure really disappointing for them to see a result and performance like that.
'It has been a good season so far and obviously we appreciate the support every home and away game, and I'm sure it will be the same again on Saturday against Bolton. Hopefully we an give them something more to shout about then.
'But I don't think there will be any more pressure now. There is always pressure. There is pressure every time we play, so it won't be any different to any other game. We've just got to make sure we do react now from the Sunderland result and performance, and try to put it right.'
• Norwich City have confirmed their FA Cup fifth round tie with Championship side Leicester City at Carrow Road will take place on Saturday, February 18, with a 3pm kick-off. Ticket details are still to be confirmed.
Meanwhile, the Canaries' second string will be in action at the same time – they face Ridgeons League Premier Division outfit Gorleston in their Norfolk Senior Cup semi-final at Emerald Park.