It's up to Lupoli, says Roeder

David Cuffley Striker Arturo Lupoli's first team future with Norwich City is down to him, manager Glenn Roeder insisted after the Italian's FA Cup rescue act.Lupoli's fifth goal of the season earned the Canaries a third round replay when he scored just eight minutes after coming on as a substitute against Charlton.

David Cuffley

Striker Arturo Lupoli's first team future with Norwich City is down to him, manager Glenn Roeder insisted after the Italian's FA Cup rescue act.

Lupoli's fifth goal of the season earned the Canaries a third round replay when he scored just eight minutes after coming on as a substitute against Charlton.

The 21-year-old, on a season-long loan from Fiorentina, has started just one City match since mid-September and had to wait more than an hour before his introduction at The Valley, as a replacement for Darel Russell.


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But when asked about goalscorer Lupoli's assertion that he needs to be playing first team football, Roeder argued: “He's right but that's in his own hands. That's not in my hands. He's on the bench, you can't get much closer to a start than being on the bench.

“I don't think he's ever lost his confidence. He didn't lack confidence when he scored the goal. But there are other things within his game, within his physique, that have restricted him to not many opportunities.

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“The game is very much about power and pace and strength.”

The goal, after 71 minutes, secured a rematch against the Championship's bottom side, a week tomorrow.

Said Roeder: “He finished it well - the same as at Cardiff, when he came on and scored a couple of goals, and he nicked one against Swansea - so he couldn't have chosen a better time to pinch another one than today because the last thing we wanted to do was go out of the Cup.”

As for Lupoli's wish to leave Norwich this month if he does not get his chance, Roeder ruled out any move.

“He's on a full season's loan. He's here for a full season and that's it. So as far as I'm aware it couldn't be broken in any case,” said Roeder.

“For a young man, he's had a lot of clubs already. Some of them are pretty good as well. He needs to play more football, not just have the names of the clubs on his CV.”

Lupoli is hoping he will now get a place in the starting eleven in Saturday's Championship game at Sheffield United, but is not holding his breath.

He said: “I always hope to start in the team, but now we go back to Colney training centre and we build up the week and, hopefully, we start to win games of football again.”

He was pleased to give City's travelling army something to cheer about at The Valley.

He said: “I think there were almost 3,000 fans who had travelled down to London and they deserve much better than what they have been getting over the last two or three weeks.

“And I know that they are supporting us even if we are not getting results so I think it was a good chance to give our thanks for that.”

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