Gallacher wants his place back for keeps
JONATHAN REDHEAD Norwich City goalkeeper Paul Gallacher is hoping his man of the match performance against Port Vale on Tuesday is enough to force his way back into manager Peter Grant's first team plans.
Norwich City goalkeeper Paul Gallacher is hoping his man of the match performance against Port Vale on Tuesday is enough to force his way back into manager Peter Grant's first team plans.
The Scottish international revealed his shock at being dropped by Grant and replaced by loan signing Jamie Ashdown ahead of last Saturday's 1-0 victory over Coca Cola Championship leaders Cardiff City.
But after keeping a clean sheet and making two saves in the ultimately unsuccessful penalty shoot out loss to Vale, Gallacher says he was satisfied with his performance - and now must wait and see if it is enough to dislodge Ashdown.
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The 'keeper discovered he was being axed from the side last Friday morning, but was determined to use the Carling Cup clash to show Grant what he is capable of.
“It was a shock obviously,” he said. “It was on Friday morning I found out. The manager said although I'd kept a clean sheet he felt he had to make a change.
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“He's entitled to do that, he's the manager. I'm obviously gutted with the fact he has done it. So for myself to get a game, I wanted to show what I'm capable of and put on a performance and hopefully change his mind.
“I'm satisfied with my performance, yes. We'll wait and see what happens at the weekend but the big man (Ashdown) coming in didn't do anything wrong. So, I've no complaints at the moment. As I said I'm disappointed not to be in the first team.
“But I got a chance and I was hoping to take that and I thought I did OK.”
Gallacher also revealed his disappointment at City's failure to beat Vale on Tuesday night.
“The players we've got in the team we should win it in 90 minutes, if we're being brutally honest,” he said. “We've got a good squad of players here, and we've been on a decent run of late so we should really be beating teams like Port Vale.
“That's no disrespect to them at all because they did fantastic tonight, but the quality we've got, we'd be looking to win it in 90 minutes.
“They came at us and played really attacking football. They created chances and we created chances, and it was one of those nights where a mistake was going to win it for somebody but it didn't happen. And it went to penalties and we know what happened from there.”
“But ultimately we've lost the game and it's very disappointing as we wanted to go on and hopefully win it.”
Meanwhile, Ashdown has left the door open for a permanent move to Carrow Road.
Although he kept a clean sheet against Cardiff, he didn't altogether convince Grant and Gallacher's performances against Port Vale has left but the manager with a nice selection headache.
And now Ashdown wants more games under his belt during his month long loan, to force Grant to think about making the temporary switch permanent.
“I would like to play every game, just to get games under my belt and get some more match fitness,” said Ashdown. “At the moment I just want to get some games. I've got to get back to the basics of training and playing. I've got a contract for another year-and-a-half, so that's where I am. But it would be nice to play week-in week-out.”
To have any chance of a move to Norfolk he needs to convince Grant, and said he understood why the new City boss was disappointed with his weekend performance.
“He's seen me play a lot better,” said Ashdown. “A few of my kicks weren't that straight, apart from that it's hard to criticise, but that's the manager's job.
“I thought I did okay. I could have been a bit better on a few things but, overall, I kept a clean sheet and that's the most important thing.”