Fozzy prepares for tough test

PUBLISHED: 10:52 22 July 2008 | UPDATED: 15:39 10 September 2010

Skipper Mark Fotheringham expects no half-measures from Falkenbergs FF at Stafsinge tonight. Photo: Kasper Wikestad

Skipper Mark Fotheringham expects no half-measures from Falkenbergs FF at Stafsinge tonight. Photo: Kasper Wikestad

Skipper Mark Fotheringham expects no half-measures from Norwich City's next Scandinavian opponents tonight.

Swedish fourth division outfit Ahlafors IF served up one or two bruising challenges in the opening tour match on Saturday, and the Scottish midfielder anticipates no less from second division Falkenbergs FF at Stafsinge tonight (7pm CET).

Skipper Mark Fotheringham expects no half-measures from Norwich City's next Scandinavian opponents tonight.

Swedish fourth division outfit Ahlafors IF served up one or two bruising challenges in the opening tour match on Saturday, and the Scottish midfielder anticipates no less from second division Falkenbergs FF at Stafsinge tonight (7pm CET).

"They looked more like Scottish players than they did Swedish on Saturday, but it was good fun," said Fotheringham.

"I was at Celtic with Henrik Larsson and Johann Mjallby and the one thing about the Scandinavian boys is their fitness levels are incredible, so it does not matter what level these teams are at, they're always going to be fit, strong boys."

Five of City's starting line-up, including midfield trio Fotheringham, Sammy Clingan and Matty Pattison, were given the full 90 minutes against Ahlafors and manager Glenn Roeder will hope to give more of his squad a full match tonight.

"It was good to get a 90-minute run-out and a few of the other lads had longer games," said Fotheringham.

"As you're getting closer to the Championship games, people tend to get a bit longer on the pitch in the friendlies and it gives you that mental side of things, knowing you're getting prepared."

City will return home for pre-season games against Tottenham and Colchester, but Fotheringham cannot wait for the real business to start with the first Championship game at Coventry on August 9.

"We're absolutely itching to play. I'm sure the lads will agree it's all fine and well playing friendlies and getting your fitness work done but you just want the games to start," he said.

"Everything's a little bit different at the moment because you're training before games so you're a little bit tired and you don't feel that freshness you do when you're playing in Championship games.

"We're all just itching to go and can't wait for the season to start, especially with the new squad, and I hope we'll shape up well."

New arrivals will give 24-year-old Fotheringham and his colleagues more of a battle for midfield places, but he's ready for that.

"It's becoming much more of a squad game nowadays and you've got to be prepared to fight for your place," he said.

"I'm sure Glenn's taking care of that. We've just to concentrate on getting 90 minutes in - the first for a few of us the other day - and really concentrate on the training, getting your fitness so you're up to speed for the start of the Championship."

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