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Bamford aims for Premier League experience with Norwich

Patrick Bamford is looking forward to establishing himself as a Premier League player following his move to Norwich City.

The Chelsea loanee made his first appearance for his new club when he came off the bench after 56 minutes of their 2-0 defeat at Aston Villa.

He had a chance to pull one back for the Canaries near the end, but was denied by Jores Okore’s brilliant saving challenge.

The 22-year-old is looking to take his chances to impress following a frustrating period on loan at Crystal Palace earlier in the season.

“It is a case of so far so good,” he said.  “They have made me feel very welcome on the training ground so far.  The main reason I moved to Norwich is because I wanted to be playing first team football obviously. I’ve got to be playing this year"

“Although it wasn’t the right result, it was good to be playing. It felt like I hadn’t played a game in ages.

Bamford said the decision to move to Norwich followed a conversation with Chelsea’s technical director, Michael Emenalo.

“He said in his view if I stayed I wouldn’t play as much as I need to during this season,” said Bamford.

“At this age especially I needed to go out on loan and make sure I get the extra minutes under my belt.”

Bamford, who has had successful loans at MK Dons, Derby County and Middlesbrough, spoke of his frustration during his time at Crystal Palace, where he made six substitute appearances before his season-long loan was terminated.

“It was frustrating. Sitting on the bench all the time is not something you want to do as a professional footballer,” he said.

“That was definitely an experience you learn from but it’s a feeling I hopefully won’t have to face again.”

After making his first competitive appearance since December 28, Bamford is looking to build a head of steam in the second-half of the season.

“I haven’t set myself too many targets. I just want to make sure I keep playing and we will see what happens,” he said.

“If I can help Norwich stay in the Premier League then that would be ideal.”

Bamford has been moving between his home in Norwell and a hotel in Norwich, and said the uncertainty of the transfer window was an issue he had to deal with.

“To be honest I am quite used to moving round all the time and now it’s something you eventually get used to,” he said.

“It is not the best thing in the world because for a while you are in limbo and for a long time you are not sure what you’re doing.

“In terms of housing, it can be quite difficult but the club have helped me and I should be moving into a house this week.

“It is the side of a footballer people don’t often hear a lot about.”

Bamford will be hoping to make an impact when Norwich host West Ham United on Saturday.

West Ham Tired? Hopefully

Norwich City fans can be hopeful that West Ham will be tired for their visit to Carrow Road this weekend withe their FA Cup replay going to extra time in mid week, with Angelo Ogbonna's header in the 120th minute secured a 2-1 win over Jurgen Klopp's Liverpool earlier this week, sealing progression to the fifth round

History also does not appear to be on West Ham's side, though, given none of the last 13 league meetings between the two sides have ended with an away win, and the Hammers having lost 2 out of their last 4 league games, meaning it is as good an opportunity as we might get to end our run of 5 straight defeats.

For West Ham James Tomkins joined Winston Reid (hamstring), Joey O'Brien (hamstring), Carl Jenkinson (knee), Cheikhou Kouyate (head), Manuel Lanzini (groin) and Diafra Sakho (thigh) on the sidelines after their win over Liverpool, the defender ruled out for five weeks with a calf injury

City should be nearing full strength, with Graeme Dorrans apparently still a doubt after illness and Alex Tettey suspended for a second game following his late booking against Spurs

 

Hooper The Lean Mean Goal Machine

Much has been written about Norwich's recent form and results and quite frankly it makes depressing reading, and the news that the Championship Player Of the Month has gone to Gary Hooper makes me wonder if we should have sold him

I'm sure many City fans will chime in now with how hot and cold he could blow whilst with us - but at the moment the team only seems to be blowing baltic so any glimmer of hope would have been better?

The 28-year-old signed for Sheffield Wednesday in a deal reportedly worth around £3million, following a successful loan spell with the Owls.

Five goals in five games last month saw Hooper win Wednesday’s player of the month award as well, as he helps continue a push for a place in the Championship play-offs, with his new club currently two points clear of seventh-placed Ipswich.

 

Aston Villa V Norwich - Confirmed Starting Line Ups

So the line ups are in, and Pinto, Olsson & Jarvis are out, as is Tettey (suspended)

O'Neil & Hoolahan Recalled

Rudd; Martin (c), Klose, Bassong, Brady; Howson, Mulumbu, O'Neil, Hoolahan; Naismith; Mbokani.

SUBS: Ruddy (GK), Jerome, Bamford, Jarvis, Redmond, Olsson, Pinto

Norwich Old Boy Mark Bunn starts in Goal for Villa

Confirmed #AVFC team: Bunn, Richards, Okore, Lescott, Cissokho, Bacuna, Gana, Westwood, Veretout, Gil, Agbonlahor.

Subs: Guzan, Clark, Sinclair, Richardson, Lyden, Grealish, Davis.

Aston Villa - Starting Line Ups Here At 2pm

Reminder - at least one enforced change for Norwich with Alex Tettey banned for two games after he picked up a booking late in the match against Spurs in midweek

How will this change the team?

Check back at 2pm to find the confirmed starting line up

Arsenal Tracking Norwich Midfielder

There are a number of reports in the nationals today that Arsenal are tracking u-21 midfielder Todd Cantwell who played a staring role in the u-21 match midweek where City came back from 4-1 down to beat Middlebrough 5-4 with Cantwell scoring twice.

The 18-year-old midfielder is highly regarded within the Club but he is out of contract at the end of the season, and surely we should be actively negociating hard with him rather than risking a tribunal setting the fee at the end of the season if he chooses to leave

According to the Daily Mirror, Arsenal's chief scout Steve Rowley watched the teenager impress for Norwich in their FA Youth Cup match with Middlesbrough on Thursday, and a host of other clubs were also watching Cantwell including Newcastle, Liverpool, Crystal Palace and both Manchester clubs

Where Are They Now? Gaetano Giallanza

With the news in Timm Klose's first press conference that the club was highly recomended to him by his agent Gaetano Giallanza it made me curious what had happened to him as he he looked promising until he suffered his serious knee injury with the club

Now retired from playing and 41 years old Giallanza is an agent to a number of Swiss players

After leaving Norwich at the end of the 2002 season he went on to play for BSC Young Boys in Switzerland for one year, then another Swiss club FC Arau for a further 2 seasons, before returning to the UK for his final season as a pro in 2006-07 with darlington for whom he scored 3 times in 14 appearances.

Gaetano Giallanza Norwich City

Aston Villa - Team News

There's been a lot of talk this week about what Alex Neil will do with the team following Tuesday's defeat at home to Tottenham

We will leave that to others, and just look at what we do know

Alex Tettey will be unavailable for the match having picked up a booking late in the Spurs match meaning he is banned under the totting up system.

Robbie Brady who missed the Spurs match with a bug is now fit and available agin, and joins a relatively clean bill of health for the squad as a whole, the only player missing is Graham Dorrans who is still out with the bug that meant he missed the midweek match

Wes Hoolahan is also available with thoughts in many camps that he wasnt in the team midweek as he was being saved for this game.

It will be interesting to see what Alex Neil does to resolve the defensive issues, which has seen us leak 17 goals in the last 5 matches, one fact I did notice is that of 41 goals we have conceeded this season only 17 were whilst John Ruddy was in goal, whilst Declan Rudd has let in 24 - food for thought maybe?