City aim to thwart Hoolahan in Baggies’ reunion
PUBLISHED: 17:11 11 January 2019 | UPDATED: 18:21 11 January 2019
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Wes Hoolahan is a Norwich City legend but there will be no quarter given if he tries to halt the Canaries’ Championship charge in West Brom colours.
Hoolahan starred in the Baggies’ FA Cup win last weekend on a rare start but a loan recall for Leicester City’s exciting youngster Harvey Barnes could tee up a reunion on Saturday with the club he served for over a decade.
The Dubliner enjoyed an emotional send-off last season against Leeds and is scheduled to return to Carrow Road alongside Russell Martin for a special celebration game at the end of the current campaign.
But Daniel Farke warns sentiment will be in short supply at The Hawthorns.
“If he is on the pitch and he has the ball be sure Alex Tettey wants the ball and we try our best in order to get it,” said Farke. “There is no legendary status then. We want to win points and if Wes is involved we must control him.
“I have told him myself that even in 10 years time he would still have the ability to do something magical on the pitch. We have to be awake and we will be.
“He was there with a really good appearance in the FA Cup, but not so much involved in the league. It feels a bit strange to not see Wes in a Norwich shirt. That is the business.
“He is a good friend and a legend of this club so it will be good to see him – hopefully not too much on the pitch. We will do a professional job and treat him like we would each and every other opponent.
“After the game there is no problem, he is always welcome in our dressing room and we can have a chat and joke a bit and everything is okay.”
Hoolahan looks set to extend his initial short term deal at the Baggies after this weekend and his chances of landing a fresh contract may have improved with the exit of the influential Barnes.
Farke admits Leicester City’s decision to recall the midfielder is a boost for the Canaries.
“Without any doubt Harvey Barnes is a brilliant player who was there with many good performances and had a big impact with his goals and assists,” he said.
“I don’t pay too much attention to those type of things, beyond preparing the team for the threats we might face. You just have to handle it and when someone isn’t available that is an opportunity for another guy to shine.
“They will not be 3pc less motivated or won’t have enough quality.”