Marshall: We must get our heads right
DAVID CUFFLEY Goalkeeper David Marshall must put Norwich City's desperate plight behind him for a few days as he heads off for international duty - but admitted it would be a long fortnight before they get the chance to live down their biggest defeat of the season.
Goalkeeper David Marshall must put Norwich City's desperate plight behind him for a few days as he heads off for international duty - but admitted it would be a long fortnight before they get the chance to live down their biggest defeat of the season.
Marshall teams up with Scotland as one of three 'keepers on duty for their do-or-die European Championship qualifier against Italy in his home city on Saturday.
But the 22-year-old Glaswegian is still trying to come to terms with the Canaries' 3-0 Championship drubbing at Plymouth Argyle on Saturday, a result that leaves them five points adrift at the bottom of the table and with just two points from their last 11 league games.
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New boss Glenn Roeder's team face a two-week break before they entertain Coventry City on November 24, and Marshall has mixed feelings about the interlude.
He said: “Personally, I think the boys would like a game tomorrow. I think they'd play now just to get this one out of their system.
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“But maybe it's a blessing in disguise and the gaffer can get a good couple of weeks with us and get us performing a bit better.
“I would have liked to have had a game maybe Tuesday or Wednesday, but it wasn't to be so I hope the lads can get ready while I'm away and we can get our heads right for Coventry.”
Marshall was given little chance as an overhead kick by livewire Lee Martin, on loan from Manchester United, gave Plymouth a first-half lead. Two goals in two minutes soon after the break, from Paul Connolly and David Norris, then put the game beyond City.
He said: “It was disappointing throughout the whole game, to be honest.
“The first goal was just a flick on to the penalty spot and the boy's got an overhead kick in, in the box, which is disappointing. I mean, it takes a bit of time to get that done, so I think we should be a bit tighter.
“At half-time, we were really disappointed with our performance and you look for a reaction after that but we never got it.
“When you're playing that badly in the first half as a team, you expect a reaction but the second goal just killed us off.
“It's hard. We really thought the way we trained and prepared for this game, this was a winnable game for us so I think that's even more disappointing. We let ourselves down today.”
Roeder, in only his third game in charge since succeeding Peter Grant, left no one in any doubt how he felt about the performance.
Said Marshall: “He's disappointed - everybody's disappointed. He's really down, like the players are, we do feel it. It's a bad position to be in and the new manager's only just in the door. We've got to get our heads down over the next couple of weeks - obviously a very long couple of weeks and we've got a very tough game with Coventry coming next.”
Before that, Marshall is hoping Scotland's Group B showdown at Hampden Park will provide him with more inspiration than City's current predicament.
He said: “It's a big game. It's all or nothing now. It's a good position to be in so I'm looking forward to that.”