Football's coming home for new signing Matthew

PUBLISHED: 13:15 10 July 2009 | UPDATED: 16:21 10 September 2010

David Cuffley

Summer signing Matthew Gill is set for a big welcome on home territory when Norwich City kick off their pre-season schedule tonight. The 28-year-old midfielder is likely to lead the Canaries out against Ridgeons League club Fakenham Town at Clipbush Park.

Summer signing Matthew Gill is set for a big welcome on home territory when Norwich City kick off their pre-season schedule tonight.

The 28-year-old midfielder is likely to lead the Canaries out against Ridgeons League club Fakenham Town at Clipbush Park (7.30pm).

And the former Fakenham High School pupil earned praise from manager Bryan Gunn for the way he has knuckled down to City's pre-season preparations since arriving on a free transfer from Exeter.

“He's done very well indeed,” said Gunn. “The fitness testing was an early indication of what his levels were and he had clearly worked hard and kept to the instructions he had from his old club.

“He's slipped into the group and really gelled well with everybody on the training field. It's never easy in the first couple of weeks when you try to pick up your fitness as quickly as possible.

“There were the normal moans and groans we get from a few of them, but they all reap the benefit.”

Gill is likely to be surrounded by younger team-mates tonight with the visitors billed as a City XI.

Said Gunn: “It will be mostly the new professionals but there may be a couple of triallists on show and it's quite possible someone with a strong local connection will be captain.”

The triallists could include Cambridge City midfielder Scott Neilson, while ex-Canary forward Paul McVeigh, will be in the side after joining his old club for pre-season training.

“Paul is earmarked for the game tonight,” said Gunn of the 31-year-old. “He's worked hard in training and his fitness has been impressive and it's an opportunity for him in a match situation. It's good to get back to eleven versus eleven and we've got a build-up of games over the next two weeks.”

Most of City's senior players are expected to be on show in tomorrow's friendly at Dartford (3pm).

Tonight's game marks the Ghosts' 125th anniversary season. Admission is £6 (£3 concessions, £1 car parking, Fisher Stand entry £2 extra). Dartford have sold more than 2,000 tickets for tomorrow's game at Princes Park, but fans can get in on the day.

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