Murphy hoping to shake off illness for first Canaries reunion with Cardiff
- Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images
Josh Murphy is battling to shake off illness ahead of his potential first appearance against former club Norwich City, after a frustrating first half of the campaign for the Cardiff winger.
The 25-year-old Canaries academy product, who grew up near Downham Market, missed the Bluebirds' 3-2 home win over Birmingham on Wednesday night with manager Neil Harris saying he was feeling "under the weather".
However, Murphy is expected to be in contention for his first match at Carrow Road since joining the Welsh side in a deal reportedly worth around £11million in the summer of 2018.
Since then the speedy attacker who played such a key role in Norwich winning the FA Youth Cup in 2013 has managed 11 goals and six assists during 74 games for Cardiff.
That compares to 20 goals and 12 assists from 107 matches for the Canaries, having scored a fine long-range strike on his debut to inspire a comeback win at Watford in the League Cup in September 2013.
After a smattering of Premier League experience as City slipped to relegation in 2013-14 he had Championship loan stints at Wigan and MK Dons before becoming a regular under Alex Neil once Norwich had again dropped back to the second tier in 2016.
He played an important role in Daniel Farke's first season in charge, with seven goals and three assists during 2017-18, but City decided to cash in as Cardiff came calling after their promotion to the Premier League.
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Three goals in the top flight wasn't enough to help Neil Warnock keep the Bluebirds clear of the drop and the veteran manager was replaced by former Millwall chief Harris last November, resulting in play-off semi-final defeat to Fulham last season.
With the Bluebirds' playing a relatively direct brand of football, Murphy has found himself on the fringes recently though. After coming off the bench and setting up Kieffer Moore's equaliser at Millwall last month Harris had called for more from the wide man.
"They are the moments Josh Murphy has got to give us," the Cardiff boss told Wales Online after that assist at The Den. "Whether he is in the starting XI or off the bench, whether he is playing in a wide area or as a second striker, he has to give us those moments.
"We know there are going to be times when he is going to frustrate and he is going to give the ball away, but he has those moments when he can score out of nothing or create out of nothing."
He started as a striker in the next game but was taken off an hour into a 1-0 defeat at Coventry and has only had two brief cameos from the bench in the last six games.
If Murphy does feature for the Bluebirds then Canaries fans will remain wary of his threat however, having seen what hs is capable of, with one particularly brilliant long-range strike against Aston Villa in April 2018 among Carrow Road's greatest goals.