Gunn: Keep up good work

PUBLISHED: 10:00 30 July 2009 | UPDATED: 16:23 10 September 2010

Norwich City boss Bryan Gunn is delighted with his side's unbeaten pre-season record - but admits it will count for little if they fail to make a winning start to their League One campaign.

Norwich City boss Bryan Gunn is delighted with his side's unbeaten pre-season record - but admits it will count for little if they fail to make a winning start to their League One campaign.

Tuesday's 1-0 victory at Crystal Palace made it five wins and a draw from six games for the Canaries' senior squad as they prepare for their final warm-up match against Wigan Athletic at Carrow Road on Saturday (3pm).

Gunn knows the Premier League side will provide the toughest test of City's friendly programme, but says August 8 is the date that really matters with Colchester United's visit kicking off the league season. And he urged his players not to waste all their good work.

He said: “We have another game coming up on Saturday. It might be slightly different because it's against Premier League opposition but again we'll pick a team where we hope we can get a result from the game.

“Looking over the course of the pre-season, results are important, the winning mentality is important, but the most important thing is the result on August 8 and thereafter.

“We don't want all the hard work we have done in pre-season to be undone in that first game.”

Gunn said he had not inked any names on his teamsheet yet for the opening game, but believes the Palace victory and the 1-1 draw with a Manchester United XI three days earlier have advanced the cause of certain individuals.

He said: “I've not penned any on paper yet. Of the lads from Saturday, there were a number that improved their chances.

“And at Palace, with the games we will have coming up thick and fast in the early part of August, they did their chances no harm.

“The way the lads are working in pre-season is very encouraging. We have been given the opportunity to bring players into the club to fill spaces that we had from the end of last season and we are delighted with the standard of player we have brought in.

“It's encouraging. We've built up the pre-season fixtures in a way that it has always been a more difficult game as we've moved on and Palace proved a very difficult game, but we hope come the end of the season we might be thinking about coming back to Selhurst Park and playing them again.”

Striker Grant Holt was one who earned praise after his first start in City colours at Palace.

Said Gunn: “He showed lots of nice touches, lots of skill and obviously helped make the goal with a strong run into the corner and a very skilful nutmeg and cutback to Simon Whaley.

“That's the type of player we have got in Grant - we need to utilise that, need to make sure we get the ball into the right areas where we will get his contribution like that on more occasions. Certainly as a team player he worked his socks off.”

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