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CANARIES.CO.UK EXCLUSIVE

1 April 2016

Adam Drury, 37, made 361 appearances for Norwich City between 2001 and 2012. He is now Shadow Squad Coach for the Community Sports Foundation.

NCFC: Hi Adam, thanks for talking to us. It’s been 18 months since you announced your retirement from football – have you got used to life away from playing?

Yes, now I have. To start off with I found it weird; there was no routine and I felt like I should be somewhere. When I was down the pub on a Friday afternoon with my father-in-law, I thought someone would spot me in there!

There was that transitional period but I was lucky with the support of my family and friends, and because of my association with Norwich City they didn't hesitate in asking me to do stuff. I didn't want handouts as such, I wanted to work from the bottom and work my way up. I didn't want to tread on people's toes. It's like football, I got to where I got through working hard and it's the same now.

NCFC: Do you have days where you wish you were still involved, and maybe others when you don’t miss it at all?

I miss the buzz - the closest I get now is five-a-side with my mates! Last year, I had the London Marathon that I was working towards so that gave me something.



This year I've been at every Norwich home game working in the lounges, and there are games where you think 'yeah, I'd like to be involved' but you know in the back of your head that you wouldn't be able to keep up!

NCFC: Were you always set on coming back to Norfolk after you hung up your boots?

At Leeds things didn't work out that well, and I was thinking that I wasn't going to play on but then I went to Bradford on loan and I played the last 14 or 15 games of the season and did well. The feedback I got was good, so I thought I could carry on playing but after that nothing happened and I drew a line under it.

I then thought 'do I move back to Norwich?' I'm from Cambridge originally, so I was always going to head this way but Norwich has got that thing where it keeps pulling you back.

NCFC: Why do you think this place holds so much attraction to former players?

It's welcoming. I had a bond because I was here for so long, but even lads who have been here for a couple of years have that feeling too. You get to know people and get involved with the club and the area, there are some great places around here.

As you get older, it's the perfect place to bring up your children. It's got that feel-good factor.



NCFC: Let’s talk about your role at the Community Sports Foundation – give us an overview of how that came about?

Well, there were interviews in the past where I said that coaching doesn't interest me at all! As I was coming towards finishing, I knew that I loved being involved in football and thought about scouting.

I've got a friend at Manchester City who I was with at Peterborough, and he's high up there. I said I didn't want anything, I just was keen to see how their scouting works. I went there, picked his brains and liked it.

I then did the London Marathon through CSF, and I spoke to Ian (Thornton, Director of CSF) and he said they were going to set up a shadow squad at Under-18s level and that they needed a coach for it. It's been brilliant, and even though I'd said I'd never coach, now I've started I'm really enjoying it.



NCFC: This Elite Football Development Programme sounds pretty cool. Can you talk us through that?

When I was a youth scholar and joined Peterborough, if I hadn't have done well there I didn't know what I would have done, but for these lads it's education-based and football learning.

A lot of them have been in and out of the Academy system. I wouldn't say they lose their way, but you get late developers and they've still got the idea in their head that they want to be footballers, and that's brilliant.

They have to do the education side of it as well though, it's basically a football learning programme.

NCFC: Why do you feel this was the next path for you to go down?

Well I've got the bug for coaching at the minute, and even though I haven't started properly with my team yet because they don't start until September, I'm really enjoying it.

It's about giving something back. I was lucky enough to have worked with some really good coaches, so if I can take bits from all of them it should be good. We'll see how it goes.

NCFC: I’m sure you’re a big Norwich fan now. What have you made of the last year or so, with Wembley and the Premier League?

It's been unreal. I did the radio in the play-offs and I've been here for every home game in the Premier League, it's been brilliant.

 

We've been hard done by in a few games this season. People said the goal was lucky against West Brom, but I think it's the first time this season where you could say we've had any luck!

I met the manager for first time a week or so ago and I was really impressed with him. The way he spoke was fantastic, and there's a confidence about him and I like that.

NCFC: With your expert left-back hat on, what do you make of Martin Olsson and Robbie Brady as successors to the Drury throne?

They've been fantastic! Brady's got a great left foot and delivery, and I think it works well with Olsson behind him down the left.

NCFC: They’ve both got some way to go to reach your number of appearances… Why do you think Adam Drury and Norwich City just clicked?

Sometimes you just get that feeling. I've said it many times that I had opportunities to leave, but the grass isn't always greener. There are lads I know who moved on for a few more quid but it didn't always work out quite as well.



I loved my time here. I never felt comfortable in the sense that I thought I would play every week - if it had got like that, I probably wouldn't have stayed. I always felt I had a link with the club and the fans, and going through the bad times I wanted to play a part in helping this club get back to where it is now.

NCFC: Of all the memories, which one sticks out the most from your time at Carrow Road?

In that sense, I've been really lucky. To be captain when we won the Division One title was great, and being at City Hall and lifting trophy. Also the play-off final against Birmingham; even though we lost that day, the atmopshere was incredible.

There was the testimonial too... I've been very lucky, I wouldn't change it for anything.

NCFC: If you had to pick a five-a-side team of City teammates, which four would be joining you on the pitch?

I've played with three England 'keepers in John Ruddy, Fraser Forster and Robert Green, but I'll go with John because he's playing now! The two midfielders would be Hucks (Darren Huckerby) and Wes Hoolahan, and then either Gary Holt or Jonny Howson.



NCFC: Sum up your association with the Club in one word.

Proud.



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