Marshall - We've got nothing to fear
DAVID CUFFLEY Goalkeeper David Marshall insists Norwich City are not looking over their shoulders in the Championship - despite a run of four defeats in five matches.
Goalkeeper David Marshall insists Norwich City are not looking over their shoulders in the Championship - despite a run of four defeats in five matches.
Depending on other results, the Canaries could be in the bottom three in the table by the time they kick off against Sheffield Wednesday in tomorrow's televised game at Carrow Road (5.20pm).
The Owls are in bottom spot after finally securing their first points of the season with a 1-0 home win over Hull last Saturday.
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But 22-year-old Marshall believes it's far too early to take about a “must win” game.
“No, not at all. You just get on game by game at the moment,” said Marshall. “I think it's fairly early. It's only seven league games gone. We have a massive two games at home, and it looks like a winnable game at Queen's Park Rangers, so we just have to go from there and take each game as it comes.”
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The timing of tomorrow's match, giving Leicester and Preston the chance to leapfrog City for at least a couple of hours if they win their home games, does not concern the Scotland international.
“It's early in the season, so it's not as if we're looking at people's results. It's not too bad. It's a live Sky game so there's more pressure on us, but I don't think the timing of the match is too important,” he said.
Marshall has had to contend with constant changes in central defence, and may have another different pairing in front of him tomorrow is Gary Doherty fails to recover from a groin injury, with Dion Dublin and skipper Jason Shackell both suspended.
“It is difficult - obviously everybody would like a settled team. When I was here last season that was what the gaffer was after. It is just circumstances with injuries and disappointing sendings-off that have changed that, but I think we are good enough to be winning games. They are experienced centre-backs who are playing,” said Marshall.
“You have just got to get on with it. The injuries you can't do anything about, it is the sendings-off we need to have a look at. It is disappointing.
“They were deserved red cards at Wolves, the boys know that and they are disappointed, but we need everybody on the pitch. At least with everybody on the pitch it gives us a chance, but we have to get on with it now the boys are suspended.
“Doc's picked up an injury as well, so the manager will have to have a look in the next couple of days. We don't actually know who's going to be playing yet.
“But I'm sure the boys who come in are big enough to get us a win.”
Marshall's fellow Scot, Ian Murray played well alongside Doherty in central defence at Manchester City in Tuesday's 1-0 Carling Cup defeat, while the 'keeper praised 18-year-old Michael Spillane and 19-year-old Rossi Jarvis for their midfield contribution.
“The young boys came in and did well, so whoever has to come in will just have to get the job done because it is a massive game,” he said.
“I thought they were great - I have been really impressed with Spillane ever since I was down in January. I think he has been really good and I think he deserved his chance. I thought he was outstanding, especially in the first half, so hopefully we can take that into the Championship, which is more important for us.”
Spillane was not intimidated by big names or a big arena, said Marshall.
“I don't think he has too much respect for anybody, as you've seen on Tuesday night - he had no respect for Manchester City. He just wants to get on the ball, he will tackle anybody. I just thought he played really well and he has given the manager a dilemma for tomorrow.”
Darren Huckerby and Adam Drury are showing signs of recovery from the injuries that sidelined them this week - but were still unable to train yesterday.
Drury has missed the last two matches with a sore back, while Huckerby was ruled out of the Carling Cup return to his former club by an ankle injury.
Those two plus Doherty and Luke Chadwick (hamstring) all missed training yesterday. With Shackell and Dublin still suspended, City's squad is at full stretch, although midfielder Julien Brellier is available again after serving a one-match ban.
“The blessing is I've got two extra hours. I will give them as much time as I can with the squad as thin as it is,” said manager Peter Grant.
“I'm not going to rule any of them out but I've got to get preparation in. I just feel in the games where we have not prepared as well as we can do, we've struggled a bit when we've left it to the last moment.
“It's something I may have to look at and maybe make the decision then rather than leave it until Saturday morning.
“Darren feels better, Adam feels a little bit better as well. But Darren's not done any twisting and turning on his ankle yet so that's a problem we have.”