Drury hails protection from Lappin and pals
Adam Drury admits he is enjoying the added protection afforded him by a couple of minders in the Norwich City side. With the Canaries bidding to extend their unbeaten League One run to four matches at MK Dons on Monday night, the 31-year-old defender hailed the new solidity in the team since it was re-shaped by manager Paul Lambert.
Adam Drury admits he is enjoying the added protection afforded him by a couple of minders in the Norwich City side.
With the Canaries bidding to extend their unbeaten League One run to four matches at MK Dons on Monday night, the 31-year-old defender hailed the new solidity in the team since it was re-shaped by manager Paul Lambert.
Full-back Drury has kept his place in the shake-up, but now has extra cover on the left-hand side thanks to the recall of wide midfielder Simon Lappin and the increasing influence of Danish centre-back Jens Berthel Askou, no shrinking violet, alongside him.
“Jens has come in and done fantastically well,” said Drury. “He's still learning how to play the English way as well, but he has adapted perfectly.
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“There will definitely be a head injury if I get in a collision with him.
“I think the way we play at the minute we are a lot more compact and harder to break down and it is harder for teams to get through us rather than play right through the middle of us.
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“Having Lapps in front offers you something extra because he can play left-back as well. From my point of view it's a bit of a godsend.
“At the same time, Simon knows his job as well, he's got to get forward and create things - everyone is working for each other in the team.”
After his Colchester side inflicted City's heaviest home defeat of all time with a 7-1 victory in the opening League One fixture, Lambert wasted no time in trying to shore up the defence on his arrival.
Said Drury: “Everyone knows what happened on the first day of the season, when we were too easy to break down, and we got torn apart that day. That is something he identified and wanted to make us more solid, which he has done, you can see in the results we have had, and the goals we have conceded, which are a lot fewer.
“I think from a defender's point of view that's great, but at the same time we have got to learn to break things down and go on and win games.”
Drury's catalogue of injuries over the past two years has kept the medical staff at Colney on red alert and there was another scare against Walsall last week when he suffered a swollen left cheekbone after colliding with an opponent.
“I think the metal plate held my face together, so it's just as well I had it put in there, really. It's one of those things, a clash of heads, and these things happen but I'm all good now,” he said.
“I should imagine I've been a nightmare at home for the last two years with the injuries and getting frustrated but, touch wood, at the minute everything is OK.”
Despite City taking seven points from the last three league games, Drury knows that the trip to MK Dons and the visit of Charlton next Saturday are likely to prove a better yardstick when assessing their chances of challenging for promotion.
He said: “These are the games people look at when they think 'Are you going to be there or thereabouts at the end of the season?' These two teams want to be up there at the end of the season and it's going to be a real challenge so we want to go in there positively and get something out of them.”
A settled side could only help, he said.
“That's the big thing - it's not just the back four, it's the whole team as well,” said Drury. “If you look at Charlton they haven't changed their team at all this season and the last couple of years we've changed the back four, we've had people playing out of position in the back four and it just goes to make things unsettled.”