Boss reflects on Ipswich and looks forwardALEX Neil has already switched his focus to Norwich City’s Wembley date after leading the Canaries to the Sky Bet Championship final.
City dispatched fierce rivals Ipswich Town 3-1 at Carrow Road on Saturday lunchtime to secure an overall 4-2 aggregate triumph and book a Premier League showdown with Middlesbrough on May 25.
Wes Hoolahan, Nathan Redmond and Cameron Jerome struck in an action-packed second half as the Canaries capitalised fully on Christophe Berra’s 49th-minute dismissal.
Speaking to Norwich City TV post-match, Neil moved on quickly to the final, commenting: “My mind will be on the Middlesbrough game, and it will just be about prepping for next week and making sure we give ourselves the best chance.
“It’s a cause of celebration for the fans, but for me it’s half the job and my work will start again tomorrow.
“We were in control of the tie at all stages. I was completely confident in the players and I fully expected us to go through. I knew we would have enough; it was just about making sure we performed on the day. It’s a collective effort. It’s not about one person or one team.”
Hoolahan’s penalty put Neil’s side in control early in the second half but the ten men of Ipswich battled back to level through Tommy Smith.
It was his team’s swift response to that setback which impressed City’s manager the most.
“After we scored we started to move the ball, but we conceded a really sloppy goal which I wasn’t best pleased about at the time,” he added
“But we showed real character and bravery getting on the ball, because the pressure was on us to go and break them down.
“Once we got to 1-1, it was important that we got back in the lead relatively quickly. The longer that time goes on, the more difficult it becomes.
“I thought quality-wise then we were excellent, we created a number of chances and managed to score two more.”