Tierney looking for extended residence in Premier League

Defender Marc Tierney is determined Norwich will not be Premier League 'tourists' paying a flying visit to the top division of English football.

The 25-year-old left-back is convinced the Canaries can hold their own in the company of some of Europe's best teams after winning back-to-back promotions under manager Paul Lambert.

Tierney was one of the later recruits to Lambert's squad, playing 16 times after his January move from Colchester and experiencing defeat only once, at Swansea.

He said he was well aware of the capabilities of his new team-mates when he moved to Carrow Road, and was surprised by the speed with which he gained a first team place and became part of City's promotion charge. After replacing Adam Drury at Barnsley on February 26, he didn't miss a match.

'One thing was for sure, I knew the team was fantastic and working with the manager and his staff, the quality was definitely there,' said Tierney.

'But it's more of a dream than anything, it's happened so quickly. Dislocating my shoulder shortly before I came here, I knew my fitness levels needed to improve after coming back from injury, so it wasn't something I really envisaged – getting in the first team as quickly as I did.

'I was quite surprised to get in but with the way the lads were playing it really helped me to settle in.

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'Sometimes clubs look for a year maybe just to consolidate a place in the Championship but, no, the gaffer's pushed on from there and it's fantastic to achieve what we've achieved.

'I think the Premier League is the best in the world and to be part of that best league in the world is absolutely fantastic.

'My determination and devotion to the game has now paid off to get there and we want to go on from there. We don't want to just be tourists in the Premier League, we want to go on and really mix it with the big boys and we think we can do that.'

Prestwich-born Tierney was given an early insight into life at a Premier League club through his brother Paul, who spent six years at Old Trafford before a spell at Livingston, playing alongside Lambert and Wes Hoolahan.

He said: 'My brother was at Manchester United so for many years I used to go there and watch and really got a good feel of the club from inside and out, both from my brother and being friends with someone like David Fox, who also was at Manchester United.

'So to now go and play first team football at grounds like that – and the fantastic players I've seen walk out of that tunnel and I hope me and the rest of the boys can walk out of that very same tunnel – is something very special. But we'll go there and other places like that with no fear, as we've shown this season.'

Tierney is indebted to Colchester boss John Ward for giving him the chance to move up a division and rejoin his former boss in January.

He said: 'My agent gave me a call and had a quick chat with John, and he said if the right price came in, he wouldn't stand in my way of a club such as Norwich, who were looking to try to get promoted. He said he couldn't have looked at himself in the mirror if he hadn't let me go.

'Once that was all sorted and the fee was agreed, it all moved very quickly. Before I knew it I was at Carrow Road and before I knew it I was playing and getting my first team slot and carrying on to the end of the season. I couldn't really have envisaged the move going any better than it has.

'I'd played at Carrow Road before for Colchester but the atmosphere I experienced on that freak day when we won 7-1 was nothing like the atmosphere for Cardiff at home, which was magnificent.'