Safri: I'll get goals for Grant
PUBLISHED: 07:00 25 November 2006 | UPDATED: 09:51 14 September 2010
Youssef Safri says he wants to prove that Peter Grant was wrong to drop him - by scoring a long overdue goal against Hull today. The Moroccan midfielder was relegated to the bench for last Sunday's East Anglian derby at Ipswich - although a bout of flu meant he was ruled out of what became a nightmare trip into Suffolk for the Canaries.
Youssef Safri says he wants to prove that Peter Grant was wrong to drop him - by scoring a long overdue goal against Hull today.
The Moroccan midfielder was relegated to the bench for last Sunday's East Anglian derby at Ipswich - although a bout of flu meant he was ruled out of what become a nightmare trip into Suffolk for the Canaries.
But Safri is determined to show the City boss that he should be the first name on his team sheet - and reckons there is no better way than by ending a goal drought which stretches back to September last year - the last time Hull were at Carrow Road.
“If I play I am looking forward to scoring, especially as I haven't scored this season,” Safri said. “I am fully fit and looking forward to any challenge.
“I am a little disappointed because I know my ability to score. In my position the manager puts me in a holding role so it is quite difficult to get forward as well. I like to play in that position and I am confident there and I give 100pc just to do well.”
A long-distance thunderbolt has been a Safri speciality - and a rarity, with just three goals to his name in more than two years - but the 29-year-old isn't concerned at the way they go in.
“I don't care if it's a Newcastle goal or not - any goal will do,” he said.
Safri says he is happy with his form and insists he is not saving himself for national team duties.
“I have only missed two games, the first one because my legs were too heavy for my hamstring and the second one was Ipswich, that means I am doing well,” he said. “At the moment I am giving Norwich more than what I am giving my country.
“I am really happy, I have been playing a lot of games and I have a good record. I am really pleased and happy to keep doing it until the last day I am here.”
It is a feeling that made last week's decision difficult for Safri.
“Last week I was playing with my national team, I played 90 minutes and I had been looking forward to the game because it was against Ipswich and I knew it was on TV,” he said.
“I spoke to him (Grant) and he said it was because I played 90 minutes with my national team and said maybe the pitch at Ipswich was a bit heavy and I might be tired.
“To be honest, I have been doing that all my career, playing with my national team and in England and I never ever feel tired or my legs are heavy.
“The night before the game I had flu, maybe because the change of weather from Morocco to England. I spoke to the doctor and said I couldn't make it.”
However, Safri insists that the manager's decision is final and that he would take it on the chin should he find himself on the bench this weekend.
“I don't think I have any problem,” he said. “I am working hard, I love to play and if it is the manager's decision I have to respect that because I don't think any player can do anything or say anything.
“If I am not playing I have to respect any decision from the manager.”