Boro old boy Yanic Wildschut is enjoying a new lease of life at Norwich City
- Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd
Yanic Wildschut says he is playing ‘with a smile’ on his face again after a difficult start to his Norwich City career.
Wildschut moved to Carrow Road from Wigan in January for around £4m, having had a spell with tonight’s opponents Middlesbrough – which included scoring in a 4-0 victory over the Canaries in November, 2014.
The 25-year-old struggled last season, but has shown a noticeable improvement, and believes the pressure of his transfer fee was weighing heavily.
“When a new manager comes in, the saying is that everyone starts at zero – but I always knew this season at Norwich I’d be starting at a disadvantage,” he told The Gazette. “I signed in January for a lot of money so was maybe under a bit more pressure to show what I was about.
“But I played well in pre-season and proved that I can be a part of this squad. I’m playing with a smile on my face.
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“I perhaps underestimated the pressure of coming to a club with a transfer fee, the pressure of them wanting to go straight back up. Once we couldn’t get in the play-offs we started to play without any pressure, beating teams last season.
“This season, now I feel better, fitter and stronger. I think moving to Norwich was the first time I’d moved for a transfer fee, so maybe that did bring some extra pressure. I don’t think it was something you thought about when you were playing or in training, but perhaps subconsciously when you’re not playing. You can maybe think ‘they’ve spent all this money on me, why aren’t I playing’ or ‘I need to show more’.
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“But I just think I was playing in a team that was struggling. I don’t think I played as well as I can and I blame myself for that.
“But this season it’s different, I’m enjoying my football again and things are going well.”