‘The boss makes the decisions’ - Vrancic will keep doing his talking on the pitch for City
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Mario Vrancic will keep trying to force his way into Daniel Farke’s starting line-up but says he is ‘quite happy’ at Norwich City, despite looming contract uncertainty.
The 31-year-old is yet to start a game this season but has proved the match-winner in both of last week’s home victories, with a late strike to earn a deserved 1-0 win over Birmingham on Tuesday and superb free-kick in injury-time to grab a 2-1 win over a spirited Wycombe side on Saturday.
“You can influence certain things and that is what you should do,” said Vrancic of his role as a super sub. “You can only influence and try to help the team, regardless of the minute. So let’s see how it develops.”
Vrancic was a key part of the Championship title-winning team under Farke in 2018-19, with 10 goals and seven assists from 36 games. However, he has started just two of the last 22 league matches, since a 4-0 defeat at Manchester United in January, with Farke suggesting earlier in the season that he saw the Bosnia & Herzegovina international as more of an advanced midfield option these days.
“What should I say? You can’t change it, sometimes it’s not up to you,” Vrancic continued. “The boss makes the decisions.
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“I would lie if I said it was amazing that I need to come on but it is how it is.”
The former Paderborn and Darmstadt midfielder made his 100th appearance for City at the end of last season, the most he has made for one club.
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Asked if he is happy at the club, Vrancic replied: “Oh yes, but not just now, it’s been like that since I arrived and obviously I am quite happy here.”
He is also not worried about his contract being due to expire at the end of the season either, adding: “There are certain things you can influence and that’s all I’m trying to do, on the pitch and that’s it.”
The creative ace, who scored his 16th goal for the Canaries on Saturday, is pleased that Farke’s midfield is so competitive though - with Lukas Rupp and Oliver Skipp currently in possession of the central starting roles.
“It’s actually good for the manager to have more options, in case some players are injured and stuff,” he continued. “If you want to achieve something special you need to have a good squad and also maybe a bigger squad.”
His goal came after winning a free-kick himself on the edge of the box, showing his set-piece class again with a curling effort that Wycombe keeper Ryan Allsopp could only watch fly in to the top-right corner after beating his defensive wall.
“I took the speed a little bit off, a little bit smoother, and it went in,” Vrancic described, as he discussed the free-kick being so close to goal.
“I couldn’t have scored a nicer free-kick, it was really perfect. That’s what why I train. In those situations it’s always the same process for me.
“I try to focus a lot, telling me things in my head, how to strike the ball. That’s why I practise and why I score, because I wouldn’t score if I didn’t practise.”
Three successive wins moved City up to fifth and within just a point of second, ahead of two tough away games this week, against last season’s beaten play-off finalists Brentford on Tuesday and second-placed Bristol City on Saturday.
“I think every week is tough, regardless of the opponent,” vrancic concluded. “Eventually you just get three points, right? So even today (against Wycombe) was tough, we got three points.
“I think also at Brentford it will be very tough, probably a different style of football but also we try to win there.
“We should have some confidence and travel there to get three points.”