Drury won't go down order without a fight

Canaries defender Adam Drury says he is frustrated at dropping down the pecking order for the first time in his career - and by the steady stream of injuries which have hampered his attempts to regain his starting place.

Canaries defender Adam Drury says he is frustrated at dropping down the pecking order for the first time in his career - and by the steady stream of injuries which have hampered his attempts to regain his starting place.

Drury has always been a "first name on the team sheet" player but, having been forced to miss a huge chunk of last season because of injury, now finds himself playing second fiddle to on-loan Ryan Bertrand, the man Glenn Roeder brought in to fill the gap at left back last season.

The 30-year-old's return to fitness hasn't been helped by the latest in a catalogue of injuries - a broken cheekbone.

However, Drury - currently the club's longest serving player - says he will be fit for this weekend's trip, after having a metal plate inserted his face to help heal three cracks in his cheekbone, caused by a clash of heads in training.

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"Ryan was here before, when I was injured last season, and he's a top quality player who I think, personally, will go on to play at the highest level, no problem at all," said Drury (pictured).

"So I've got to wait for my chance to get in the team, but first and foremost I've got to stay injury-free then I can compete for a place. Should the gaffer change the team and move Ryan about or I get a chance to play, however it comes about, I've got to be ready.

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"It's been a frustrating time for me, but it's one of those things. I've never had it in my career, I've always played 40-odd games a season but with the players we've got here at the minute, playing so well, it's going to be tough to get in the team and you just have to wait for your chance. But what I want is success for the team.

"We're desperate for that first win and Saturday at Plymouth is going to be a great chance to try to get one.

"The positive thing is we've been playing well but the longer it goes on the harder it is to get the win. But we've been playing good stuff and I'm pretty sure it will come soon.

"We've done well in our previous games and now we've just got to do the extra bit and get the three points that will get us started. We know it's going to be a battle with the style of football Plymouth play. But it doesn't matter who we're playing, to get ourselves up in the top half of this league we've got to start winning games, whether that's playing the good football we've been playing or grinding it out."

Drury's cheekbone is the latest in a catalogue of problems he has suffered over the past two years.

Two seasons ago, the former skipper had two ankle operations, lost three teeth, suffered a back injury and at one stage had to wear a neck brace.

Last season, he was sidelined from October onwards by a knee injury he suffered in the 3-1 home defeat by Bristol City. He finally made his first appearance under Roeder in the 1-0 Carling Cup defeat at MK Dons last month, his only outing this term before the jinx struck again.

Drury, back in full training on Wednesday for the first time since surgery, said: "It's not great working my way back to fitness but unfortunately two weeks ago I broke my cheekbone in three places, so I've had a plate put in my face. I haven't trained for a couple of weeks. I had to let that settle down.

"We were playing an in-house game and I went up for a header and there was a clash of heads. I felt sore at the time but I didn't think anything of it, then a couple of days later it was still a bit uncomfortable so I asked Simon Spencer, the physio, to have a look at it and he felt round my face and thought I had a crack.

"I had an x-ray and it showed I had one main crack and two smaller cracks in my cheekbone. If I left it to heal on its own it would take four to six weeks before I can play again, but having a plate put in, it heals a lot quicker.

"It's a bit uncomfortable but it's one of those things. I've had the all-clear, I've got a plate in it and it's stronger so you just have to get on with it."

Drury would not divulge the identity of the player with whom he collided.

"I'm not going to name him but he's going to get a kick next time we play in training! It was one of the young lads so he'll have to keep on his toes," he said. "My main worry when we clashed heads was 'Not my teeth again' because it took long enough last time. I'm just glad everything was all right in that department."

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