Friday, 11 September 2015

Tripping up Alex Neil at home will need something special

Alex Neil and Eddie Howe have already rubbed shoulders, but the stunning turnaround that Alex Neil achieved for his team at Dean Court in his first game as manager of the Canaries is something that will rankle with Howe. For someone who was not going to get involved in his first match in charge of the Canaries, Alex Neil certainly made an impression. This Saturday though he'll be at home with the pressure that brings in front of an expectant crowd of over 25,000 who have not seen their team win at home yet this season.
Norwich players after their win at Dean Court last January.
Norwich have had a reasonable start to their Premier League return with four points just like the Cherries. They've also scored in all but one of their matches, but Alex Neil will know he has to get more from his team at home.Norwich have not been shot shy having made 20 attempts against Stoke and 17 shots against Crystal Palace. It's the clinical finishing that has arguably been missing.

Alex Neil was perhaps right to go after Dwight Gayle at Palace on deadline day but without him he'll be looking for Cameron Jerome to get off the mark. Who knows what he'll do with Lewis Grabban? He'd probably like to put him in the reserves but he could be a great asset to bring on against the Cherries.Losing Bradley Johnson to Derby was also a surprise at the end of the transfer window. The main battle should be on the wings with Nathan Redmond and Wes Hoolahan trying to stir up trouble for Bournemouth's full-backs. However, AFCB have their wingers too and Ritchie and Pugh will also test Norwich's full backs. Alex Neil has a problem at right back as  Steven Whittaker earned a suspension from Norwich's 3-0 defeat at Southampton.. 

I suppose this match will be billed as the two young British managers seeking an advantage to keep their team up with a win. Which player will make the headlines though is hard to tell. I hope it will be Callum Wilson and something a bit special will be needed to get a result at Carrow Road.

Alex Neil gives an update on his players

Norwich League Form home and away

AFCB League Form home and away

My expected AFCB starting XI
Boruc (GK),Francis (RB), Elphick (CD), Cook (CD), Smith (LB), Ritchie (RW), O'Kane (CM), Surman (CM), Pugh (LW), Murray (FW), Wilson (FW)  

(I'll be pleased though if Charlie Daniels has recovered quicker than we might have hoped.)

Norwich XI last time out
Ruddy, Whittaker, Martin, Bassong, Brady, Redmond, Dorrans (Johnson - 70' ), Tettey, Howson,  Hoolahan (Wisdom - 32' ), Jerome (Hooper - 89' )

Whittaker was red carded so is suspended for three games.

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