Norwich City’s Fox happy to top the ‘mini league’
David Fox was delighted to see his side go top of the league on Saturday evening – the 'mini league' which the midfielder believes City are competing in this season.
Saturday's 4-2 win against Newcastle moved the Canaries temporarily up to ninth in the Premier League table before Stoke's win over Spurs, but perhaps more importantly it increased the gap between City and the bottom three to seven points.
Whilst the Canaries continue to defy expectations, Fox acknowledged the club are looking to increase the points gap on clubs below them rather than catch the more established sides at the top.
'I think you can kind of say that we're top of the mini league at the minute – that's the way we're looking at it,' he said. 'We need to try and keep the distance between ourselves and the bottom three and make it as big as possible.
'We are doing very well against the teams around us, especially at home. We need to keep that form up. It's a massive three points for us today.'
City took full advantage of Newcastle having to do without first choice central defenders Fabricio Coloccini and Steven Taylor with Grant Holt and Steve Morison causing havoc all afternoon.
Stand-in centre halves James Perch and Danny Simpson couldn't cope with the sheer physicality of the Canaries' strikeforce and Fox believes the pair are starting to show a decent understanding.
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'They were brilliant today. We thought using them was the way to go – we knew that they had injuries at the back as well, which probably helped us.
'We knew they were light at the back and we thought that was a place we could exploit them. They are both starting to get a bit of an understanding. They have not played together a lot but when they do I think they're a bit of a handful. The movement is good and the goals they got today were brilliant.'
Norwich have now scored more headed goals than any other side in the Premier League, which is perhaps not surprising given the aerial prowess of Holt and Morison and their hunger for goals.
But Fox, who played a key role as Norwich reverted to the midfield diamond that served them so well in successive promotion campaigns, believes the service is also a key reason behind their success in the air. 'I think the boys have just got a desire to go and head it. There's some good quality coming into the box and we know that if we put it in the right areas then we've got lads who will go and attack it.'
Fox admitted the mood in the dressing room was a little flat at half-time after Demba Ba cancelled out Wes Hoolahan's opener.
Norwich gave Yohan Cabaye too much time and space in midfield allowing the Frenchman to loft a ball over the Norwich defence for Ba to control and slot home.
But the former Colchester man thinks his side got their reward in the second period for staying on the front foot and not letting the setback knock them out of their stride. 'We knew we'd played well in the first half and had been the better team. We created lots of opportunities and we were on the front foot throughout. It was a little bit down but we knew that if we continued with how we had played in the first half then we could win the game.
'It was a massive win for us – we have to make the most of our home games and I think we did that.'