West Brom FA Cup hero Simon Cox expecting to face Norwich City
West Brom's FA Cup hero Simon Cox is expecting to start against Norwich City in the Premier League this weekend after clear-the-air talks with Baggies' chief Roy Hodgson.
Cox has refused to rule out a move in the January transfer window in a bid to secure his place in the Republic of Ireland's Euro2012 squad. The 24-year-old has had to settle for a watching brief behind international team mate Shane Long and Peter Odemiwingie – the man who sunk the Canaries at Carrow Road in September – for the first half of the league season. But Cox's hat-trick against Cardiff earned the Baggies a fourth round home date against Norwich, following a heart-to-heart with Hodgson.
'It all sounded positive,' he said. 'Let's hope what he says is right and I can stay in the team, but that comes from my performances, so hopefully I showed what I can do on Saturday and that has given him a headache. With the injuries we've got he said there could be a run of games for me at the moment, whether it be up top, on the left, the right or wherever. He said, 'If you get the run of games, you've got to show what you can do'. That's all I've ever asked – to get three, four or five games on the bounce, not just go in for one and out for the next regardless of the result.'
Cox is still prepared to keep his options open, but remains in the dark whether Albion have had any confirmed interest.
'Ideally, I'd love to be here,' he said. 'But it's not my choice, I don't know, you would have to ask Dan Ashworth (sporting and technical director). He and the gaffer are the ones who get the phone calls.'
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As far as I am concerned I am just getting my head down, doing my work in training and hopefully when given a chance, I'm performing because you never know who is watching.'
Cox was part of Giovanni Trapattoni's Republic squad that qualified for this summer's European Championships - and the former Swindon man aims to keep it that way.
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'This next six months is one of the biggest of my career so far,' said Cox. 'I said to the gaffer on Friday that if I am to guarantee my place on that plane I feel I have to be as fit and as sharp as possible, and in as good form as possible.'