Grant will still fancy City's chances

PUBLISHED: 15:36 21 April 2007 | UPDATED: 10:15 14 September 2010

Maybe it's not such a bad thing that there's nothing to play for but local pride in tomorrow's 'Old Farm' derby game.

Maybe it's not such a bad thing that there's nothing to play for but local pride in tomorrow's 'Old Farm' derby game.

Peter Grant has a plethora of injured senior players and so it would appear very likely that the new crop of Academy boys are going to be pulling on a first team shirt and facing up to the old enemy. It's a situation far from ideal, but secretly I fancy Grant won't be too concerned that his hand has been forced to throw in a few youngsters now that relegation is not a threat and the season is drawing to a close.

The last couple of weeks have provided the manager with a great opportunity to blood the likes of Kris Renton and Bally Smart, allowing him to see how the boys can live with the men.

In a time when recruiting new players becomes more difficult and definitely more expensive, the thought of Norwich City rolling out a production line of youth players is most certainly a mouthwatering one. Every club's dream is to produce the kind of players that graduate from the likes of Old Trafford or Celtic Park; let's be honest, we'd settle for just one Ryan Giggs or Paul Scholes wouldn't we?

The time and money invested in the young lads as they develop during their time at Colney must come to fruition if we are to have faith in our Academy system.

Jason Shackell and Robert Green are the two obvious recent successes of course. Ian Henderson, the Jarvis brothers and Joe Lewis are amongst those still to prove themselves and we shall have to wait and see whether they can become first team regulars next term.

We can all think of many who have failed to fulfil their early promise in a Norwich shirt.

We can also recall too many who have been released only to make it elsewhere (you may find that Jamie Cureton comes to mind at this point).

So, as the new kids on the block get their big chance, let's hope they grab it with both hands and cement their future with Norwich City.

Make no mistake - winning tomorrow will not be straightforward. That said, beating Town with half our youth team in the side would be some achievement and one to remember.

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