Norwich City midfielder Gary O’Neil is ready for the battles ahead

Gary ONeil scored twice in Norwich City's 10-0 friendly win at Hitchin. Picture by Paul Chesterton/F

Gary ONeil scored twice in Norwich City's 10-0 friendly win at Hitchin. Picture by Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd - Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

Gary O'Neil is happy to be Norwich City's lucky charm ahead of their Premier League return.

The Canaries' midfielder struck a brace in the midweek 10-0 friendly win against Hitchin as he looks to press his claims to be involved in the big kick-off against Crystal Palace on August 8 at Carrow Road.

City secured their Premier League place in a Wembley play-off win which was O'Neil's third of his career, after previously helping guide West Ham and QPR to success.

'I was saying to the lads I think I might be pushing my luck for a third promotion through the play-offs,' he said. 'But they were fantastic and we managed to do it. Going up that way is all about the highs and lows really where you miss out on automatic promotion. You think you are going straight up but then you realise it has to be the play-offs and when you get the win at Wembley it is fantastic.

'I've really enjoyed my time here. It's a fantastic place to live with the family. The fans are fantastic as well, they really love Norwich and we sell out every single week, regardless of whether it's the Championship or the Premier League.'

O'Neil, speaking to Talksport, is convinced Alex Neil will keep the Canaries up.

'I believe we will definitely stay up. I feel there are three teams that are worse than us,' he said. 'It is a tough summer when you are a manager. He obviously has not experienced the Premier League before as a player or a manager so he won't be 100pc sure of what it takes to be there. He will have a fair idea of what we need and the one thing you know about him is that he is meticulous in his planning. He will get us in fantastic shape to get the job done. We've got the tour next week and that is a chance to do a bit of bonding, a lot of training and have a really good week, which is vital.'

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