‘Perhaps Farke is his father-in-law’ - Vrancic still a real City asset
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Daniel Farke is tipping Mario Vrancic to provide the spark to get Norwich City up and running in the Championship.
Vrancic was the headline act in the defining part of the Canaries’ title-winning season two years ago.
But only six starts in the Premier League and summer transfer speculation linking him with a return to Germany suggested he was set for another bit part role.
The 31-year-old, however, featured in both the two league games prior to the international break and remains a key creative force for Farke.
“You can always count on Mario. He is always reliable. He is a player I love,” he said. “I well remember in my first season in charge when I kept playing him and everyone was moaning he is a bit too slow, not mobile enough, perhaps Farke is his father-in-law or something because why does he keep playing him. I was criticised. I was nearly sacked because of this, I’m joking, but many supporters were not convinced. Then he proved how valuable he can be for us. There were some genius performances during our Championship winning spell and when he wasn’t involved last season everyone is then asking, where is Mario?
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“He is a pretty special player. If you love football, you have to love Mario. His football brain is world class.
“He doesn’t even have to see the pass, he can feel it. He can change a game. He can deliver goals and assists. Sadly we have to say he is not the youngest any more. He was never the quickest or the most mobile so for that we also have to accept the reality he is two years older.”
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Farke believes Vrancic can really come into his own if Norwich harness some Championship momentum the other side of the break.
“He is a good choice to play deeper when you are dominating possession and you have control because from this position he can influence the game like no one on this level,” said the City chief.
“To be honest we were not able to do this in the Premier League and now we need to grow into this season and then Mario can play in a deeper position. He is also a good option in the 10 because he has goals and assists.
“There is a lot of competition in this role. I am pleased with his recent development and it is no coincidence he was involved in the last game days.”