Opportunity knocks for Norwich City’s wide boys to fill Nathan Redmond’s boots

Norwich City midfielder Matt Jarvis knows what it takes to win Championship promotion. Picture by Pa

Norwich City midfielder Matt Jarvis knows what it takes to win Championship promotion. Picture by Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd - Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

Nathan Redmond may have divided opinion but there is now a vacancy down Norwich City's right-flank for the Championship return.

Alex Neil's view is the only one that counts in this equation, but it will be interesting to see which way the Scot falls as he looks to replace the thrust and pace of Southampton's newest signing.

If Neil wants to be bold and give youth a chance then City's Murphy twins are well-placed to stake a claim. Josh had a full season at Championship level with MK Dons. The 21-year-old scored seven times in 46 appearances and was named the Dons' players' player-of-the-year to underline the scale of his impact.

Swapping a team scrapping for their lives for one who justifiably must expect to contend at the opposite end of the table is a different challenge but Murphy, and his twin Jacob, both offer the same latent potential as Redmond to stretch defences and terrorise full-backs.

The question with each, as it was with the departed Redmond, is can they harness the consistency to match the talent. There were times, even last season, when Redmond looked simply unstoppable. Manchester United was a landmark victory, earned in part by his counter-attacking prowess. It was the same at Sunderland even earlier in the campaign. By the time the Black Cats arrived at Carrow Road for that pivotal survival meeting, Redmond was on the bench. Neil conceded in the post-mortem that followed relegation he may have erred in not unleashing the wide player from the start and it was hard not to contest that conclusion given the way he mauled Watford on the night City's demotion was confirmed.

Should the manager feel he needs more measured urgings from the right-side of midfield then Matt Jarvis is the obvious option.

Neil was impressed enough to turn an initial loan into a permanent move but injury curtailed his effectiveness over the second-half of last season. The Jarvis who impressed in a 3-1 Premier League home win over Bournemouth, on a goalscoring debut, would be an asset. The 30-year-old also knows what it takes having won promotion at this level with Wolves. Neil has plenty of other options inside his dressing room. Jonny Howson has operated down that flank, so too Steven Naismith, while Ivo Pinto, by inclination, is an attacking full-back who could play further forward of a Steven Whittaker, but all of those would appear far from a natural fit.

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Armed with the Redmond funds, the Scot could look outward to the transfer market or the loan route again, in the manner of Jarvis' initial arrival, but the City chief appear to have more pressing areas to address in terms of his squad when the window officially opens next week.