Gunn just loves it when a plan comes together

PUBLISHED: 16:09 03 August 2009 | UPDATED: 16:24 10 September 2010

Bryan Gunn has guided City to an unbeaten record in pre-season, culminating in Saturday’s 3-2 victory over Wigan. It was clinched by a 76th-minute goal from Simon Whaley, celebrating with the man who made it, Wes Hoolahan. Picture: Antony Kelly

Bryan Gunn has guided City to an unbeaten record in pre-season, culminating in Saturday’s 3-2 victory over Wigan. It was clinched by a 76th-minute goal from Simon Whaley, celebrating with the man who made it, Wes Hoolahan. Picture: Antony Kelly

Bryan Gunn is confident his Norwich City side are coming to the boil at just the right time as they prepare for the start of the League One campaign at home to Colchester United.

Bryan Gunn is confident his Norwich City side are coming to the boil at just the right time as they prepare for the start of the League One campaign at home to Colchester United.

Saturday's 3-2 victory over Premier League Wigan made it six wins and a draw from seven pre-season games for the senior side.

And Gunn declared himself well satisfied with the Canaries' three-week schedule of warm-up matches.

He said: "I am happy with the result and happy with the whole pre-season programme. Unbeaten is a nice way to finish it but there will also be the standards that we've set now. I said afterwards in the dressing room that we've set a standard now that we have to maintain and we have to make sure we don't drop below it. That will give us the best chance of getting out of League One."

Gunn said City's preparations had been geared to having the players in peak condition for the first league game.

He said: "At the end of the season, I sat down with Mark Garfoot, our sports scientist, Ian Butterworth and Ian Crook and said it was important that we make sure the players are peaking on August 8, or ready to peak on August 8.

"We're delighted with that and the way the players have approached it because it's important they're switched on and buy into what we want to do.

"If we get a performance like that against Colchester next week, with the season ticket-holders and the casual fans bringing the crowd up to near the 25,000 mark, we'll continue to generate the crowd and they'll enjoy what they see."

Exactly who features in Gunn's starting line-up against Colchester is the big question, with four of his new signings not even figuring in the 18 against Wigan, including the two latest recruits, striker Goran Maric and defender Jens Berthel Askou.

He said: "I said to all the players 'Give me the problem'. They've given me the problem now. They've come through the last three games relatively unscathed in terms of injury, so now it's down to picking the right eleven and the seven subs. It's given me a very difficult problem when they all report for training on Monday morning and they're all fit and well. When we do get international clearance for Goran and Jens, we've got a very competitive squad and that's something that I encouraged the board to give us and they've certainly helped us deliver it."

Gunn applauded City's battling spirit in coming from behind twice before clinching victory over Wigan, while still trying to play constructive football. He said: "We have encouraged our players to work the ball out from the back and use the midfield, although we did get caught out with the first goal by doing that, but again we have encouraged the players to do that so we can't be too critical.

"But they've come back, shown character, got themselves back into the game on two occasions and finished it off with another great finish."

Midfielder Owain Tudur Jones (left) suffered a bang on the knee and played just under an hour, but should be fit for next weekend.

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