Profile: Who is new Norwich City manager Alex Neil?

Hamilton Academical manager Alex Neil collects his SPFL manager of the month award at New Douglas Pa

Hamilton Academical manager Alex Neil collects his SPFL manager of the month award at New Douglas Park, Hamilton in April 2014. Picture: JSHPIX.CO - Credit: PA

Norwich City have confirmed the appointment of Hamilton Academical player-manager Alex Neil as their new boss – but how did the 33-year-old come to the attention of the Canaries?

The Scot played as a midfielder for Barnsley and Mansfield Town in England, before returning to Scotland when he joined Hamilton in 2005.

He initially took over as player-manager at New Douglas Park in April 2013, with the club in the Scottish Championship.

Last season he guided the Accies to second place in the Championship and success in the promotion play-off against top-flight Hibs, winning a penalty shootout after the tie had finished 2-2 after two legs.

He leaves Scotland with Hamilton in an unexpected third place in the Scottish Premiership table, just three points behind reigning champions Celtic and four points behind leaders Aberdeen.

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French attacker Anthony Andreu is also the division's top scorer with 12 league goals so far this season, and Neil has recently had to play down talk of his side qualifying for Europe.

He was a key player for former manager Billy Reid, as his midfield general. He helped to nurture the talents of young players such as James McCarthy, now of Everton, and James McArthur, now of Crystal Palace, who were both sold to Wigan Athletic for more than £1million.

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Neil's success with Hamilton led to him having to play down talk of his side qualifying for Europe earlier this week.

'We've not lost two league games in a row all season after 20 games, which is an incredible achievement for us,' Neil told BBC Scotland.

'Performances probably dipped for a wee spell, that's probably a fair comment. But the last four or five weeks, our intensity's back to where it was at the start of the season and we're getting the results to back that up.

'Talk of European football is far too early, because when the split does come you're playing the top teams in the league, so it becomes even more difficult to achieve that.'

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