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17 October 2015

Boss urges team to take each game in isolation

ALEX Neil says City’s defeat to Leicester has no pertinence to their outlook ahead of Sunday’s televised meeting with Newcastle United (4pm).

The Canaries will be looking to respond to the 2-1 reverse at Carrow Road a fortnight ago by extending their hosts’ winless start in the Premier League this weekend.

City’s boss, who was speaking to Norwich City TV at Colney Training Centre on Thursday, has guided his team to 13th place in the top flight after eight matches.

“I don’t think the previous game have any bearing on the next game, whether we’ve played well or whether we’ve not played well. The next you take in isolation,” he commented.

“We want to make sure that we go about our business in the right way and hopefully put a really good performance in. Out of the ten games we’ve played so far (in all competitions), we’ve done really well in eight.

“I think that’s a great ratio for us, but we’ll be looking to improve on that as well. It’s such fine margins by which you win or lose games at this level.

"There have been a couple of games this season where I felt we’ve deserved to win but we haven’t. Those four or five extra points would put you in a very different scenario.”

Neil has had to work with a reduced squad for most of the international break with a number of his senior players away with their countries, although he is happy to have had an extra day with the group.

“A Sunday match is better than a Saturday for us because it allows us to get all those players back in. It’s not ideal though, because a lot of the lads have been away for a lot of the time,” he said.

“It is what it is, and other teams will have to deal with that as well. We’ll be as best prepared as we can be.”

Newcastle have had a slow start to Steve McClaren’s reign but Neil believes their run without a victory won’t have much of an impact on his own side’s preparations.

“I think it probably applies more pressure to them rather than anything else, having not won and certainly being at home as well. There will be a lot of pressure from their fans for them to go and win the game,” he added.

“We’re desperate to win the game as well, so we need to make sure that we approach it properly. If we can do as well as we can, then we’ve got a good chance.

“They’ll be very similar to Derby when Steve was there. They’re quite expansive when they’ve got the ball, and it’s going to be an open match I think. Hopefully we can come out on top.”

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