Norwich City legend Craig Fleming set to face former side
Norwich City legend Craig Fleming will come up against his former side for the first time since he left the club in 2007 as his Lowestoft Town side welcome a young Canaries XI to Crown Meadow this evening, kick-off 7.45pm.
Fleming, who made nearly 400 appearances for the Canaries during 10 years at Carrow Road, believes the Norwich youngsters will provide ideal opposition for his Blues side as they step up their preparations for the Ryman League Premier season.
Former Trawlerboy Gary Holt, now an academy coach with the Canaries, will take charge of the Norwich side and Fleming hopes to see a bumper crowd for the occasion.
'I'm looking forward to it because it's the first time I've faced them,' said Fleming, whose side drew with Norwich United on Tuesday evening 1-1. 'We got very close a few years ago when we got through to the first round of the FA Cup. I think there were about eight balls left and Norwich and Lowestoft were still both in it.
'Gary Holt said that they have got a mainly under-21 side but it could well be one or two first teamers to get a game as well.'
The friendly against the Canaries will be the first part of a bumper weekend of football for Lowestoft fans with the Blues set to welcome Billericay to Crown Meadow tomorrow.
Fleming said he plans to split the squad in half for each game so that everyone gets at least 75 minutes under their belts in the pursuit of full match fitness.
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'This weekend will give us the chance to give a lot of players full 90 minutes,' he added. 'It will be good for the lads – it's getting to the stage now where we need to put a lot of them through a full 90. Just about everyone in the squad will be playing 75 plus minutes.'
Lowestoft start their league campaign at Whitehawk on Saturday, August 18 and Fleming admitted he has got a rough idea of who his starting XI is likely to be, although it certainly isn't set in stone.
'I've got a fair idea but it's still open – there's games coming thick and fast and it's open,' he said. 'If you are playing well and doing the business then you're going to play. That's how it should be – there's nobody guaranteed a start. You look at the squad and we double up in about every position.
'They are all vying for a place – it's not like our replacements are of a lesser standard. We've got a pretty even squad – if you were to pick two sides from what we've got and split them up equally I couldn't tell you which side would win.'