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ALEX NEIL: THE PLAYERS RESPONDED

21 March 2015

Boss: We were the dominant team

ALEX Neil was delighted with the response of his players in Norwich City’s convincing 3-1 win over Nottingham Forest on Saturday.

Two draws against Derby County and Huddersfield Town had halted the Canaries’ charge this week, but they reduced the gap to the top two in the Sky Bet Championship after a productive performance at Carrow Road.

Jonny Howson, Cameron Jerome and Wes Hoolahan got the goals that clinched a vital three points for Neil’s troops.

“A lot of the credit has got to go to the players. Some of them were getting questioned after the other night, by me also, and I think they responded today,” he told Norwich City TV post-match.

“I certainly felt that for 80 minutes we were fantastic. I thought we knocked the ball about really well and thoroughly deserved our win. We were the dominant team in the match.

“There were a lot of good individual performances from a lot of players today too, which was really pleasing.

“It’s a pleasing day all round, a good performance: we won the game and scored three goals, the only disappointing thing was that we didn’t keep a clean sheet.”

Neil lauded the form of playmaker Hoolahan, who got a goal and an assist to cap off an impressive showing at the heart of City’s creative thrust.

The Ireland international’s penalty marked the first time he’s found the net at Carrow Road since January 2013.

“He was fantastic. He’s a great talent,” said Neil.

“I thought when he came on against Huddersfield he was excellent too. To be honest, I was trying to save him to make sure he was fresh for today. I think he was fresh, and when he’s playing and on song, he can really make the team tick.

“Cameron’s goal was fantastic too. I probably would have celebrated more if I was him scoring a goal like that! That was him playing it cool. I thought in the second half in particular, his all-round game was very good.”

City now have a 13-day wait for their game at Brighton on Good Friday, and Neil is calling for perspective as the promotion race hots up in the division – with the Canaries right in contention.

“We’ve got to keep a steady, because over these next seven games there is going to be ups and downs I can guarantee,” he added.

“That will be with us and with every other team. Hopefully we can have more ups than downs, and if we can do that then the top two is certainly achievable.”

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