Drury eager for extended run
Full-back Adam Drury is determined to be more than a once-a-fortnight footballer as he strives to regain a regular place in the Norwich City side.Injuries and the presence of on-loan defender Ryan Bertrand have restricted Drury to just five senior appearances this season.
Full-back Adam Drury is determined to be more than a once-a-fortnight footballer as he strives to regain a regular place in the Norwich City side.
Injuries and the presence of on-loan defender Ryan Bertrand have restricted Drury to just five senior appearances this season.
After his first outing for 10 months at MK Dons in the Carling Cup in August, the 30-year-old left-back had to wait until the visit of Sheffield United on September 20 for his first Championship game of the season, since when his first team appearances have come at neat - but for him, frustrating - two-week intervals.
If that pattern continues, he will be back to face Swansea City at Carrow Road on Saturday, but the former player of the year admitted: “I need an extended run.”
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Speaking before last night's disabled supporters' forum at the start of the Aviva Ability Counts Week, Drury said his stop-start season had been difficult.
He said: “It has been a bit frustrating from a team point of view and a personal point of view. You want a settled side and you want to be part of that. And for myself, coming back off a year out injured, it was important for me to get back in and get fit.
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“To start with, I did that, but unfortunately I picked up one or two injuries, broke my cheekbone and then had an ankle knock. And the gaffer's changed the team once or twice. From my own point of view I want to stay fit as long as I can, and get myself back in the side.
“I think I'm back to 100 per cent fitness and training properly. It's just a matter of getting games under your belt. I need a run of five or six games because I still haven't had that run for a year or so, so that's what I need to get myself back to full fitness and full speed as in match tempo.”
Drury, left out for the returning Bertrand against Preston on Saturday, admitted he had spoken to manager Glenn Roeder about his omission.
He said: “The gaffer has his own ideas in the way he wants to go with things and I've had a conversation with him about it. It stays between me and him but it's one of those things you're not happy with but it's part of football and you have to get on with it and get yourself back in the side.”
Drury confirmed Bertrand's view last week that the two have a healthy rivalry for the left-back slot, and said the advice had not been all one-way.
He said: “He's been teaching me how to go forward because Ryan's game is all about getting forward and joining in.
“I've said before I think he's a top quality player and I think he'll go on to be a big name in the Premier League. And if I can help in any way I can I will.
“The important thing is the gaffer picks the team. It's not my fault or Ryan's fault if one is ahead of the other. It's a good friendly rivalry and we want it all round the team and all round the squad. The gaffer's said he wants two players for every position and that's the way it is.”
Bertrand could make his England Under-21 debut against the Czech Republic next week and Drury would be delighted for him.
“I hope he plays. He deserves it and he's earned it because he's been playing well,” he said.
Drury said City's bottom six place in the Championship reflected their inconsistency.
He said: “It's not misleading because we haven't won enough games to get any higher. It's something we've got to try to put right and we're working hard to do that.
“We definitely have the players but it's one thing having the players and another thing doing it on the pitch and at the minute we haven't been doing it often enough. We've been doing it in fits and starts.”
Meanwhile, Drury enjoyed fielding fans' questions as part of last night's panel.
“Community events are a big part of this football club,” he said. “It's always been like this since the day I joined. You get an idea of what the fans are thinking and what they're feeling and they get a chance to put questions to you that they perhaps wouldn't normally get the chance to do.”