There is no place like home - Matty

David Cuffley Midfielder Matty Pattison is banking on Norwich City's home form keeping them clear of the danger zone as the Championship heads for a relegation nail-biter.

David Cuffley

Midfielder Matty Pattison is banking on Norwich City's home form keeping them clear of the danger zone as the Championship heads for a relegation nail-biter.

The Canaries top a group of seven clubs between 16th and 22nd place in the table, separated by just four points, each desperate to avoid joining Scunthorpe and Colchester in League One next season.

But as Glenn Roeder's men prepare for successive home games against West Bromwich Albion and Queen's Park Rangers, Pattison is confident they can secure the victory they need to kill off any lingering fears of a nervous final day of the season at Sheffield Wednesday on May 4.

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Sunday's 2-1 derby defeat was City's fifth reverse in six away games, a fact not lost on Roeder's one permanent signing.

“When the gaffer first came in we were consistent but we're sort of stepping off away from home. If we're building towards next season we need to concentrate more away from home,” said Pattison.

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But since the 21-year-old first arrived on loan from Newcastle in November, the Canaries have chalked up seven wins and four draws from 13 games at Carrow Road, and he believes that home security will be maintained.

“I think our home form is really good and we're not fearing anyone. I think we pass the ball as well as anyone on our day and we play just as good football as anyone so we just want to get on with it,” he said.

“We know we've got a massive game Saturday against West Brom. They're a team who play football so I think they'll let us play a bit of football. We've just got to pick ourselves up.

“If we get a win Saturday I think we'll be safe but we can't think like that. We want to win every game. We just need to get as many points as we can.”

All that would have been academic if City had capitalised on the bright start given them by Ched Evans' fourth-minute goal at Portman Road and collected three points.

“I've never seen anybody hit a ball so hard in my life. So when he gets in those positions you just hope he catches one,” said Pattison.

“But we lost our concentration after we scored. We should have kept together as a unit and concentrated for the 10 minutes after we scored. Sometimes we're most vulnerable after we score, and that showed again. After that, they were more or less first to everything.

“It was a great atmosphere. The fans were great - it was just a pity about the result and the performance. Too many of us didn't turn up.”

Pattison said City did not want to make excuses, but admitted they had missed skipper Mark Fotheringham, ruled out by a neck injury.

“He makes a big difference. He's captain of the team, he brings a lot to the team and he's a big player in the dressing room to have as well, so we did miss him a lot,” said Pattison.

He also said they had been overrun at times by Ipswich's midfield.

“Counago likes to drop off and they've got players coming from inside on the wings. They rotate a lot and it's hard picking up one player. We played with attacking wingers, so it was hard,” he said.

Sheffield Wednesday moved out of the bottom three last night with a 1-1 draw at home to Plymouth, but City remain three points ahead of the Owls, who they visit in their last game.

Barnsley, one place below the Canaries on goal difference, are at home to Hull tonight.

Remaining games

Norwich (played 43, pts 52) - Apr 19: WBA (h). Apr 26: QPR (h). May 4: Sheffield Wed (a).

Barnsley (played 42, pts 52) - Tonight: Hull (h). Apr 19: Leicester (a). Apr 26: Charlton (h). May 4: Cardiff (a).

Blackpool (played 43, pts 50) - Apr 19: Sheffield Wed (h). Apr 26: Plymouth (a). May 4: Watford (h).

Southampton (played 43, pts 50) - Apr 19: Burnley (h). Apr 26: WBA (a). May 4: Sheffield Utd (h).

Sheffield Wed (played 43, pts 49) - Apr 19: Blackpool (a). Apr 26: Leicester (a). May 4: Norwich (h).

Coventry (played 43, pts 49) - Apr 19: Colchester (a). Apr 26: Wolves (h). May 4: Charlton (a).

Leicester (played 43, pts 48) - Apr 19: Barnsley (a). Apr 26: Sheffield Wed (h). May 4: Stoke (a).

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