Lee wants to stay at City

Michael Bailey On-loan striker Alan Lee wants his spell at Norwich City to become a long-term affair in the summer, whichever division the Canaries find themselves playing in.

Michael Bailey

On-loan striker Alan Lee wants his spell at Norwich City to become a long-term affair in the summer, whichever division the Canaries find themselves playing in.

The 30-year-old former Ipswich Town man is on-loan at Carrow Road from Championship rivals Crystal Palace until the end of the season.

Things have not gone to plan for the Republic of Ireland forward since his �600,000 move from Portman Road in the summer, when Lee signed a three-year-deal at Selhurst Park.

And Norwich's latest target man conceded being back in East Anglia playing football is something he would dearly like to do on a regular basis once more, albeit on the other side of the great Waveney divide.

“Yes, I'd like to,” admitted Lee. “I've told the manager that, so it's certainly something I'd really like to do.

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“I'm very happy, I'm feeling like I'm settling in, overall I think it's a great club, I love the lads and that would be nice for me.”

And whether the next five games see the Norwich faithful celebrating another season of Championship football or left contemplating the unthinkable, Lee's opinion is not going to change - even if it would almost certainly affect City's bargaining power.

“Not from my point of view. Maybe it does more so from the club's point of view, I don't know. That's a bit down the line to be talking about that, but it's something I would like,” said Lee.

“I love living in East Anglia, it's just been a breath of fresh air for me coming back and living at home, so that would be great for me.”

Lee made his home debut in the 1-0 defeat to Sheffield Wednesday, and the striker is still struggling to hide his anger at referee Mike Russell, after he disallowed David Mooney's 'equaliser' for a foul on Owls keeper Lee Grant.

“We were disappointed, a bit angry,” said Lee of the dressing room after Norwich's weekend loss. “I asked the ref who did the fouling and he said the guy in the yellow, which sounds ridiculous.

“It sounds like something you'd hear from an after-dinner speaker. I was very angry about that, but what can you do. It's gone now.

“In my opinion, I think he saw the keeper going over and that was it, but the manager's told us just to say 'no comment' and I can't help myself sometimes, so I'm going to leave it at that.

“We've picked ourselves up, we've been lively the last couple of days and it's a big game Saturday.”

And not just Saturday's tough trip to Swansea; City have a crucial three-day Easter period that could shape how their season finishes, with Watford at Carrow Road on Easter Monday.

“Really, it's huge,” said Lee. “But you know we could be in a worse position. I still believe that the lads heads' aren't down and we will kick on at the weekend.”

Going into the weekend the Canaries remain just outside the drop zone following last night's results, which saw Southampton draw 2-2 draw at Watford to prove that the Saints are still alive and kicking. A stunning last-minute free-kick from centre-half Jan-Paul Saeijs - his second goal of the game - gave Southampton a priceless point in their battle against relegation. It left the Saints still two points adrift of Norwich with just five matches left. Victory would have taken the Saints level with the Canaries, whose cause was also helped by Sheffield United's 2-1 victory over Barnsley - former Canary Arturo Lupoli finding the back of the net to help out his old club.

The Tykes remain just one place and two points above Bryan Gunn's team, though they do still have a game in hand.

Southampton, however, showed last night that those already writing their survival chances off might be a touch premature - assuming the League don't finish the job by imposing a 10-point penalty.