Quintilla 'really happy' after winning return to Canaries action
- Credit: PA
Xavi Quintilla was feeling 'really happy' after making his first Norwich City appearance in over two months, helping to seal progress to the FA Cup fourth round.
The Spanish left-back had played every minute of the Canaries' opening seven games of the Championship season but a hip problem emerged in late October.
That kept the Villarreal loanee out for 13 matches and he was kept on the bench by Daniel Farke for three games before playing all of today's 2-0 victory over Championship rivals Coventry at Carrow Road.
“I’m really happy to be back and to get some minutes into my legs - happy for me, happy for the team and also happy for Daniel Barden, we are really happy for him," Quintilla said of City's young goalkeeper.
“A good performance and very happy to be in the next round. It was a tough game, against a really good team, so we had to stay alert and smart the whole 90 minutes.
“To score two goals in two minutes was a great start.”
Those goals from Kenny McLean and Jordan Hugill in the sixth and seventh minutes gave the hosts control despite Farke making seven changes to his starting line-up, with 20-year-old Barden playing his part in keeping the Sky Blues at bay in a scrappy second half as he made his third senior appearance.
“We tried to help him before the game but if Daniel is here in the first team it’s for a reason and he showed that," added the Spaniard.
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“So very happy for him, for Bali (Mumba), for me, for all the people who had to get minutes in the legs and to be back in the squad.”
The 24-year-old summer signing's injury absence ended up being much longer than initially expected, returning briefly to Villarreal to help get to the bottom of his hip pain.
He explained: “We thought at first it was not the worst injury but after that the injury was bad and every day the injury was worse, so we went for the scan and there was a rupture.
“So I tried to work every day, sometimes twice or three times a day, to get back and get back soon, to stay here and be back with the ball on the pitch."
Defensive midfielder Jacob Sorensen has been covering well at left-back but now Quintilla is hoping to push for a return to Championship action when City go to Cardiff next Saturday.
“You’re injured for two or three weeks and you can miss like seven or eight games," he continued. "I really wanted to play in the Championship but when you’re injured you miss a lot.
“Now I feel ready to help the team and to be focused for the next games.”