Roeder: Now the hard work begins
DAVID CUFFLEY Manager Glenn Roeder believes the Canaries are finally on an upward curve after securing their first Championship away win of the season, but he warned: "The hard work has only just begun.
Manager Glenn Roeder believes the Canaries are finally on an upward curve after securing their first Championship away win of the season, but he warned: "The hard work has only just begun."
The importance of the 3-1 success at Blackpool was underlined by the fact that City are now just a point behind last night's hosts, but Roeder is not getting carried away.
He said: "It means just as much as winning on Saturday and breaking a long losing run. Like Saturday, it was thoroughly deserved. It was a tough game. Blackpool didn't make it easy for us. They knew how important it was not to lose this game because of where they are in the table and where we are in the table. It was 'must not lose' game for Blackpool but they've lost.
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"At the moment, I think they've got to be concerned. We feel we're on an upward curve and we're really looking forward to the game on Saturday against Stoke, and we've every reason to be looking forward to it."
However, he stressed: "You never rest on your laurels in football. You keep your head down, you keep working hard. These two victories have come on the back of an awful lot of hard work on the training ground.
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"The break has done us good and we've got a couple of victories in the space of four days and you can just tell the boys are looking forward to Saturday so much.
"The hard work has only just begun because of such a poor start to the season. There is a long, long way to go and we cannot afford any slips."
City were backed by 430 fans at Bloomfield Road and Roeder said: "One of the greatest pleasures I get personally is sending our supporters home happy because we were so poor and let them down so badly at Plymouth. It was a non-performance and it must have been absolutely awful for them and that's the least we owed them tonight."
Defender Martin Taylor, who scored the second of City's three goals, has been a key figure in the Roeder revival since arriving from Birmingham. He still has three games to go in his loan period and every effort will be made to extend it.
Said Roeder: "He's scored a couple of goals since he's been here. He gets on very well with the squad. They like him, he likes them. I haven't even decided to sit down and talk to him just yet. There was no need to, he's here until early December. Some time next week we'll sit down and talk to him.
"There's a new manager being appointed at Birmingham and all those factors have to be considered by him as well as ourselves, but I would love to be able to keep him and I'm sure the board will back me on that if we can possibly keep him. I'm sure they will let me keep him. He's had a big influence on Jason Shackell as well."
Roeder also had words of encouragement for players who battled through two games in four days despite their lack of first team football this season.
He said: "There were a few players, which I expected, who were not quite at their sharpest. Matty Pattison hasn't played any first team footnall. The adrenalin of playing his first game on Saturday got him through that game, where he was a matchwinner for us.
"The same with Mo Camara. He hasn't played any first team football and at times he came under a little bit of pressure, but he didn't half dig in. He won a fantastic header right on the back post late on where he was extremely tired but he found the energy and the desire to just get up and nick the ball on.
"Mark Fotheringham, again, hasn't played any football, but was magnificent on Saturday. He came here tonight, dug in deep, probably wasn't as good as he was on Saturday but still played a major part in the win."