New recruit impressed with manager's visionKYLE Lafferty says Neil Adams’ ambition was a major factor in persuading him to return to English football with the Canaries.
The former Burnley striker enjoyed one of the most productive seasons of his career with Italian outfit Palermo last term, but after talking to City’s manager he had no doubts about becoming his second signing of the summer.
Lafferty, who was voted by Palermo's fans as their Player of the Season, will finalise his move to Carrow Road on July 1 subject to the completion of paperwork.
“Speaking to the gaffer, everything he said and everything he wants me to do, it’s good to have someone like that believing in me,” said Lafferty after agreeing a three-year deal with an option for a further 12 months.
“What he wants to do this season is play attacking football and hopefully score a lot of goals so the fans are right behind us from the first minute. With the team we have there’s no reason why we can’t do that.
“They’re a team that wants to get promoted to the Premier League at the first opportunity, so I’m excited to come here and start playing football for a team like this.”
With Lafferty and fellow new arrival Lewis Grabban complementing City’s current strike force, the Northern Ireland international recognises that competition will be intense – but he says that’s all for the better.
“I don’t think it’s a bad way to be. It makes you train to your highest level, and then when you’re on the pitch you have to give 110%, which I do,” he added when speaking exclusively to canaries.co.uk.
“It’s good to have people like that in the team, a high calibre of players. I played against Gary Hooper, and the amount of goals he got for Celtic was incredible.
“I know I’m going to have to be on my toes and work 110% on the training pitch and in the matches.”
… HIS TWO SEASONS ABROAD
“The first six months in Switzerland I enjoyed – I was playing good football and I was probably the fittest I’ve ever been in my career. Then I got the move to Palermo, and it’s been a great year for me. I scored goals and my performances were good, it’s probably one of my best seasons of my career. I played in a good team and we won the league, which was important for the team and the fans, to get into Serie A.
“I’ve learned being in Italy that it’s more tactical over there, so it’s probably helped my game a lot so I’m excited to come here and take what I’ve learned in Switzerland and Italy into playing for Norwich City Football Club.”
... RETURNING TO THE CHAMPIONSHIP AFTER SIX YEARS AWAY
“I can’t really remember much about it, it’s quite long ago! I think I started when I was 17 and I went to Rangers when I was just turning 21, so I had a good three years there and I thought I did reasonably well in the Championship at that age. I’m expecting it to be a lot tougher and a lot harder, but I believe I’m a better player than I was then so I’m excited to be here and to be able to give it another go.”
… BEING REUNITED WITH FORMER RANGERS TEAM-MATE STEVEN WHITTAKER
“I get along well with Whitts – at Rangers we had a good team and a good bond, and he was one of the players I got friendly with. It’s good knowing him now that I’m playing for Norwich. He’s someone that I’ll speak to a lot about the city and where to live, and what I can do.
“I asked him what it was like when I knew I was coming here, and he mentioned the medical! He said ‘good luck with that; it’s one of the longest!’
… HIS AND THE TEAM’S TARGETS FOR 2014-15
“For the team, the target is to get back in the Premier League straight away. I didn’t come here to play in the Championship. I know it’s a great team and hopefully we can get into the Premier League, where the team belongs.
“For me personally, I just want to score as many goals as I can and help the team get points on the board. Hopefully at the end of the season, it’s enough for us to be top.”