Dowell adds classy touch to City's glory bid
- Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd
Kieran Dowell can become a Norwich City match-winner given time, says his head coach Daniel Farke.
Dowell made only his third league start of an injury-disrupted debut season in the 1-0 Boxing Day Championship defeat at Watford.
The highly-rated 23-year-old looked the part when he first arrived in the summer from Everton, and was deployed alongside Emi Buendia and Todd Cantwell against the Hornets.
Farke must weigh up whether to unleash that exciting trio again on Tuesday when they host QPR behind closed doors at Carrow Road, but is convinced Dowell will stamp his class on the club’s promotion push.
“He was out for three months. We don’t expect him to be winning games for us at this stage,” said the City chief. “But we know Kieran has the quality and the more minutes he plays the better he will get.
"We were not at our best against Watford. Of course it’s difficult for our offence to create more chances when you come up against an experienced and really good side.
“In general, we have several offensive players injured at the moment, and more or less all of our pacey ones. We have Przemyslaw Placheta and Onel Hernandez out, who can make those runs in behind.
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"Adam Idah runs in behind, Marco Stiepermann is not one of the pacey ones, but always has a great will to run in behind.
"So if we play with this set up with many technical players behind Teemu Pukki you have to be there with even more runs in behind even from these players.
“Emi Buendia has a good feeling for this, he has scored goals out of this action, but we need goals out of all positions. This was one of the reasons that we didn’t create enough out of our dominance with that Watford performance.”
Farke predicts QPR will try and adopt a similar mindset and frustrate the Championship leaders.
“It will be a difficult game again against a side who will be concentrated on being solid, so we have to add a bit more intensity in the final third in order to give ourselves a chance,” he said. “Sometimes it is also difficult after a win because you can never enjoy it or celebrate.
"Five minutes after the game, you’re already switched on for the next game. But it helps after a loss because you can’t be too down for long. We have to go again and we accept this challenge.
"We have just played one of the best teams in the league who were unhappy to be outside the automatic promotion places. They were a big threat before the game. No doubt. But there are many competitors.
"It is not even half-time yet in terms of games played. We are in a good position but we need to keep going.”