Strength in depth the key says ex-Canary

PUBLISHED: 11:02 26 August 2008 | UPDATED: 15:43 10 September 2010

City fans spent most of last season hoping Martin Taylor would become a permanent fixture at Carrow Road.

City fans spent most of last season hoping Martin Taylor would become a permanent fixture at Carrow Road.

Martin Taylor would be playing in the yellow and green of Norwich this weekend had Glenn Roeder had his way - but says he is glad he's playing for Birmingham and not against them.

Martin Taylor would be playing in the yellow and green of Norwich this weekend had Glenn Roeder had his way - but says he is glad he's playing for Birmingham and not against them.

The big central defender was the first name on Roeder's shopping list when he took over at Carrow Road 10 months ago and began to survey the wreckage of a disastrous start to the campaign.

Within 48 hours of taking the job, Roeder had brought Taylor in to bolster his creaky defence, although his plans to make the move permanent in January ended when the Blues refused to accept City's offer - even though manager Alex McLeish said he would not figure in his first team plans.

But Taylor, with the publicity of his leg-breaking tackle on Arsenal's Eduardo da Silva in February now behind him, has started and finished all four of Birmingham's games this season - and is expected to make it five when they travel to Southampton for their Carling Cup second round tie tonight before resuming Championship duties at Carrow Road on Saturday.

Taylor believes Birmingham glut of attacking options make them the envy of most sides.

"The options up front are great," he said. "In both the league games so far we have finished stronger than the opposition.

"That's because we can call on a really talented bench and if it's not working, then we can change it. That's massive.

"From other teams' perspective, they will be looking at it and seeing Kevin Phillips or Cameron Jerome is coming on and they then have to contend with them.

"They might be thinking they've done well for 60 minutes but then they look across and see the kind of substitutions we can make.

"As a defender, I know what it's like. When you see someone come off the bench and you've been working hard, you know you are going to have to cope with something new, fresh players, and I think that's worked for us in the first couple of games.

"There is a lot of competition, but you always have to be performing well and I think someone like Cameron has been doing exceptionally well in the first couple of games. Having players playing like him and so much quality available, it's good for everyone."

Birmingham have won three Championship games and disposed of Wycombe in the Carling Cup - their best start to a season in 10 years.

But Taylor insists the Blues, relegated last season, haven't yet reached their best.

"The lads are confident," he said. "You look around the squad and you feel we've got enough for what we want: to be at the top end of the league and be promoted. Everyone is also aware it is a tough division, from the games we've had. If we had thrashed the first two teams there might have been complacency there. I don't think there will be anything like that now though.

"We went into the Southampton game and thought there were a lot of young lads, inexperienced, but they played us off the park in the first half.

"We know it is going to be tough, and that we have to work hard. You can't take anything for granted in this league."

Become a supporter

This newspaper company has followed Norwich City through good times and bad. Every single contribution will help us continue to produce in depth coverage that makes a measurable difference to our community. OTBC

Norwich City Video

Norwich City Audio

Norwich City Stats

The Pink Un magazine

cover
A must-read for any Norwich City fan with in-depth, straight-talking, analysis from the best writers around.
Purchase

Latest from the Pink Un - Norwich City Football Club News

Get In Touch

General Enquiries

(01603) 772334

The PinkUn, Prospect House, Rouen Road, Norwich, NR1 1RE

Advertising