Gibson hungry to show his best side after City move

PUBLISHED: 07:00 05 September 2020

Norwich City's new loan signing Ben Gibson has joined from Burnley Picture: Norwich City FC

Norwich City's new loan signing Ben Gibson has joined from Burnley Picture: Norwich City FC

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Ben Gibson believes Norwich City are gaining a motivated and hungry defender as he ended his miserable two-year spell with Burnley.

The 27-year-old completed his move to Carrow Road on Friday evening, ending weeks of negotiations between the Canaries, the Clarets and Gibson’s representatives.

Gibson joined Burnley for a joint-record club fee believed to be around £15million, but he made only one league appearance for Sean Dyche’s men - a 5-1 defeat to Everton on Boxing Day in 2018, with the former Middlesbrough defender scoring on his debut.

A flashpoint in training saw him banished from the club and he was sent to train with Boro - where his uncle Steve Gibson owns the club.

After a testing two years, Gibson is hungrier than ever to prove his worth and is relishing his opportunity at an ‘aspiring football club’.

“It’s been a really, really tough two years, I won’t hide from that,” he admitted. “I’m someone that wears my heart on my sleeve and not someone who sits comfortable and is happy to sit on the bench.

“I want to play football, that’s why I got involved in the game. That’s what we all dreamed of doing when we were young.

“I had that opportunity and I felt I was quite successful, but I feel that got taken away from me, as such. But when you’ve had that and had a taste of how good it can feel and it gets taken away from you, it makes you even more hungry to get it back.

“Norwich are getting a very motivated player with plenty of desire and I just can’t wait to get to work and help this football club.

Ben Gibson challenges Cameron Jerome during the 2015 Championship play-off final at Wembley 
Picture: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images LtdBen Gibson challenges Cameron Jerome during the 2015 Championship play-off final at Wembley Picture: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

“It’s a big football club and I’ve got a lot of friends that have been here,” he continued. “We did lose the play-off final when I was at Middlesbrough and that was extremely painful but that’s football. We obviously bounced back the year after and got promoted.”

Dyche once described Gibson as ‘smelling like a true professional’ and the 27-year-old has held leadership roles at his former clubs. As he arrives at Carrow Road, he is hoping to inject some leadership into the Canaries defensive set-up.

The club’s geography was also a factor in his decision, with Gibson believing that the environment constructed at the club will help him settle into life in Norfolk quickly.

“It’s a massive football club. It’s out the way down here, a lot of people say that.

Ben Gibson has been training with Middlesbrough since January. 
Picture by Paul Chesterton/Focus Images LtdBen Gibson has been training with Middlesbrough since January. Picture by Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

“For me, that’s great because the whole squad will all just bury their heads into doing what’s right for their career and living the right way with the sleep, nutrition, rest and training. It’s all there for you to go and achieve. There’s no excuses and no distractions.

“I’m an overthinker by trade so I’ve spoken to a lot of people – Daniel Ayala, Robbie Brady, Jordan Rhodes, Jonny Howson.

“Every single one of them has said the same thing. It’s a very, very good football club.”

The defender’s last game for Burnley arrived last August - a League Cup defeat to League One Sunderland.

Ben Gibson, second right, training with England players John Stones, Adam Lallana and James Ward-Prowse Picture: PABen Gibson, second right, training with England players John Stones, Adam Lallana and James Ward-Prowse Picture: PA

Despite that, Gibson isn’t concerned about lacking fitness but is hoping to get himself up to speed as soon as possible. The defender won’t be fit to face Luton Town in the Canaries first competitive fixture tomorrow.

“I’m a fit lad by trade and I work hard. I sacrifice a lot and I’m very determined. I’m naturally fit but there’s nothing that can replace match fitness and minutes on the pitch.

“I have a little bit of catching up to do but I fully believe my motivation and hunger to do well will help me do so very quickly.

“I can’t wait. I’ve seen a few of the lads around and said hello. I just want to fast forward the clock and get into training and into the normal routine. I want to get stuck in and show everyone here what I can do and what Ben Gibson is about.”

City beat Premier League new boys Fulham and a host of Championship clubs to Gibson’s signature, with Stuart Webber pursuing the defender for a number of weeks prior to confirmation of his signing.

Speaking to the club’s official channels, Gibson revealed the sales pitch that was delivered by Webber and Farke proved to extremely persuasive.

“They’ve both been brilliant. Very in-depth and detailed. I was so impressed by the knowledge they had of me, my scenario that I was in, the career that I’ve had up to date, my qualities, probably my weaknesses at the same time and they were completely honest.

“I walked away from the meeting with them and said that they know more about me than me. It was brilliant. It was really refreshing. I knew there was two people there that believed in me. They were people I was desperate to work for.”

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