Norwich City is Steven Naismith’s only focus

Steven Naismith was on target against Bielefeld. Picture: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

Steven Naismith was on target against Bielefeld. Picture: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

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Steven Naismith feels part of the Daniel Farke era at Norwich City after a summer of speculation around his future.

The Scottish international was strongly linked with a return to his old club Rangers during the early part of the close season, but Naismith is relishing the chance to work under the Canaries’ German head coach.

The 30-year-old must sit out the opening two games of the new campaign, following his red card at Leeds in the penultimate Championship game of last season, but Naismith revealed he is desperate to make a good impression.

The ex-Evertonian opened the scoring in Friday’s 3-1 friendly win at DSC Arminia Bielefeld, operating in a central midfield role alongside Mario Vrancic, and will be part of the squad for tomorrow’s latest pre-season trip to Charlton.

“I have come back here this summer and I think the manager likes me,” he said. “I have worked really hard and I am learning every day I am in training with him. I want that to continue. Obviously I have a couple of suspensions for a couple of games that I have to see through but after that I will work as hard as I can to get into the team.

“Every player here is enjoying it and wants to impress the manager. I am no different. That is all you can do as a player.”

Naismith knows what to expect in the Championship, after his first brush with the English second tier last season, and the experienced midfielder sounds a note of caution as Farke and his new look squad gear up for the league campaign.

City finished eighth after a mid-season slump under former boss Alex Neil, but Naismith predicts a new coach and number of new players could take time to bed in. Norwich begin their campaign at Fulham on August 5.

“I don’t think we’ll set any goals at this moment. With the new manager coming in first and foremost it is about doing what he wants,” he said. “That will hopefully bring us some success in terms of good results and then as the season progresses you will get a gauge on it. But you have to remember there has been a lot of change on and off the pitch and that is definitely going to take a toll. As a club, let’s take each month as it comes, keep pushing on and take it from there.”

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