Drury in the wars again as Canaries left with lessons to learn

Chris Lakey Adam Drury was left counting the war wounds after the Canaries learned one of the harsh facts of League One life at the weekend. Drury's career has been interrupted by injuries for almost two years now, but the legacy of a fractured cheekbone a year ago might have actually helped him on Saturday.

Chris Lakey

Adam Drury was left counting the war wounds after the Canaries learned one of the harsh facts of League One life at the weekend.

Drury's career has been interrupted by injuries for almost two years now, but the legacy of a fractured cheekbone a year ago might have actually helped him on Saturday. A first-half thigh problem was treated quickly, but an incident in the second half when he was left in a heap after challenging for a header in the Walsall penalty area was much more serious.

"The first one was a little bit of a dead leg, but I was okay, and the second one I went up for a header and caught the back of his head and I've got a bit of a lump on my face," explained Drury, who is the only player to have featured in every minute of the league season so far.


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"It's where I had a metal plate put in at the start of pre-season last year, but hopefully nothing is seriously damaged so I'll give it a couple of days and see how it is.

"You worry a little bit, but because there's a metal plate in there I was pretty sure it wasn't broken, so it should be all right, thankfully."

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Drury is used to the bruises, but League One football will take a little longer to get used to if the weekend is anything to go by.

"Frustrating is the main word for it," he said. "They have come here and set out their stall and the way they played, and we didn't really create many chances, which is frustrating.

"We're obviously happy to keep a clean sheet and not concede any goals at home, because at the start of the season we conceded a few, but down at the other end we have got to all help and get ourselves a goal.

"It's a big thing we have got to learn to deal with. It's frustrating for us and obviously it gets frustrating for the crowd because they are just going to get behind the ball and stop us

from playing.

"And it's not always going to be easy and sometimes it's going to take until near the end of the game where you might nick it 1-0. That's how it's going to be, but they are the sort of games where we have got to grind out and get a result."

Seven points from nine in Lambert's three league games in charge is no mean return, and Drury believes lessons will be learned.

"We can't get carried away with it, but at the same time we have got to learn how to deal with that," he said.

"You can tell everyone gets anxious and thinks, 'we're going to score, we have to keep pushing and pressing', but at the same time you have got to be careful when you do that you don't get caught out at the other end of the pitch and concede a goal.

"The crowd are watching the game and seeing that the other team are sitting back and inviting us on to them and that's where at the same time we can't get carried away and end up playing a bit too direct, as we did at times today. That is something we have to learn and deal with."

Two second-half incidents - a disallowed goal and a penalty claim that was ignored - heightened the frustration, but couldn't disguise the problem on the day.

On the disallowed goal Drury said: "I was back near the halfway line, but I couldn't really see what the problem was and (Grant) Holt said he stood his ground and didn't actually interfere with the keeper or annoy him at all.

"Obviously refs give fouls straight away these days - it's one of those things."

And the penalty claim?

"That was another one - but again we are clutching with things like that whereas we need to be the ones that stamp our authority on the game,"

said Drury.

"That's one of the things we have to learn to do because teams are going to come here and play like that and we have to be good enough to break them down and not get frustrated."

Manager Paul Lambert was calm after the game, but is he a ranter in the dressing room when things don't go his way?

"Sometimes, yes, if there is something to have a go about," Drury said. "He's not going to hold back and when we obviously think we should win the game he has got every right to.

"He has just sat us down in there and talked sensibly about what we need to do and what we need to get better at."

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