Drury welcomes competition
Norwich defender Adam Drury is up for the fight following the recent arrival of left-sided Scottish international Ian Murray. Drury insists City need stiff competition all over the park to launch a serious Championship promotion assault.
By PADDY DAVITT
Norwich defender Adam Drury is up for the fight following the recent arrival of left-sided Scottish international Ian Murray.
Drury insists City need stiff competition all over the park to launch a serious Championship promotion assault. The long serving full back is relishing the battle ahead with City chief Peter Grant also able to throw the versatile Simon Lappin into his ever expanding left-sided mix.
Fit again Drury returned for Norwich's Cardiff reverse after Rangers import Murray had deputised in the Canaries two previous away outings.
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“It's good to have healthy competition,” he said. “I think we are getting that all over the squad. Players are linked with your position every year - that is part and parcel of football and you get used to it. If you can hold onto the shirt then you must be playing well and off the back of that the team should be doing well.”
Drury admitted Cardiff's comeback win ahead of the international shut down had already left City playing catch up on the early pacesetters.
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“You can't afford to slip too far behind in this league,” he said. “None of the lads would've wanted to go into the break on that note. We know we need to start playing well and picking up points because even in a month or so gaps will start to appear.
“I felt we played well first half against Cardiff, but we don't seem to be able to kill teams off. If we had got the second goal that would've finished them. It's been very frustrating this season. To draw at Preston looked a good result but if you can nick a 1-0 it makes all the difference. We played well for a spell and scored goals against Barnet in the cup but the second half wasn't acceptable. Cardiff was the same and you need to win your home games in this league.”
Drury shook off a groin strain to face the Bluebirds and the reliable full back is desperate for an injury free run after a nightmare year.
The 29-year-old missed two months of last season with ankle problems but returned this summer to feature in the majority of City's pre-season build up.
“When its stop start you always feel like you're having a fresh pre-season,” he said. “I did my left ankle at the start of last season. It was just the repetitive wear and tear but I had an operation to clean it out. Then later on they had to clean out some bone in my right ankle. I also had a problem with my teeth and it you just feel like you never get going. I don't like watching games - I'll either listen to them or speak to the lads afterwards - because you want to be out there playing your part.”
New skipper Jason Shackell is the latest victim of City's never-ending injury jinx but the title-winning veteran of City's 2004 Championship campaign insists Grant's summer squad revamp will bear fruit.
“There's been a lot of new players come in and it does take time to gel,” he said. “But you don't get time in this game. I think we have the quality there. We've got individuals like Hucks who can win a game with a bit of magic but there'll be plenty of other games when he can't do that and you need to grind it out.
“What we need is a settled side. Shacks' is the latest one. We don't seem to pick up niggles but longer term stuff and it's one after another at the minute.”