‘It pains me to say it, but the way they run that club is fantastic’ - Town legend praises Canaries
- Credit: Archant
Norwich City have received praise from an unexpected source – an Ipswich Town legend.
Ipswich-born former England midfielder Kieron Dyer, who made 117 appearances for the Blues between 1996 and 1999 before being sold to Newcastle for around £6.5million, has spoken of his admiration for the Canaries.
The 41-year-old was speaking on BBC Radio Suffolk show Life's a Pitch on Saturday, ahead of the Tractor Boys' 1-0 home defeat to League One leaders Coventry City, which left Paul Lambert's team 10th in the table.
That has left Town seven points adrift of the play-offs with 10 games remaining, with most of their rivals having at least one game in hand.
And while Norwich may be sitting six points from safety at the bottom of the Premier League with nine games remaining, it's looking increasingly unlikely an East Anglian derby will feature in the Championship fixtures next season.
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Four successive defeats and just four wins in their last 20 league games has seen the Suffolk side plunge from top spot at the end of October, after a bright start to the campaign following relegation.
That would mean the Tractor Boys will not have the chance to prevent Norwich going 10 years unbeaten in November, when it will be a decade since City won 4-1 at Carrow Road and began a 12-game unbeaten streak against their local rivals.
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'Norwich were fantastic against Tottenham the other night,' Dyer admitted, reflecting on the penalty shoot-out win in the FA Cup fifth round.
'You can talk about our owner (Marcus Evans) not spending money, but Norwich are probably the lowest spenders in the Premier League, they play one of the most entertaining style of football, they give their youngsters a chance and they sell their youngsters at proper prices.
'I know for a fact they didn't break their wage structure in any way, so even if they go back to the Championship they'll be in a good position. They'll probably sell (Todd) Cantwell, (Jamal) Lewis and (Max) Aarons and get a hell of a lot of money.'
Dyer - who won 33 caps for England and played at the 2002 World Cup - is now joint under-18s manager at Town and even admitted he expected the Canaries to bounce back to the top flight immediately if they are relegated, thanks to the sensible stewardship of sporting director Stuart Webber.
'Webber is a very astute man,' he added. 'They'll probably get in someone for peanuts from Germany because their recruitment is fantastic and they'll come back the following season.
'Listen, it pains me to say it, but the way they run that football club at the moment is fantastic.'