Ex-Canary plots Town derby glory

FORMER Norwich City goalkeeping coach James Holman is helping to plot their downfall this Sunday.

By Derek Davis

FORMER Norwich City goalkeeping coach James Holman is helping to plot their downfall this Sunday.

Holman worked at Carrow Road before rejoining Ipswich Town last summer, helping Richard Wright to show such excellent form he has been made Town captain and is a strong contender, along with David Wright and Gareth McAuley for player of the year.

The Blues keeper has done his homework in case of penalties but Holman revealed they have not gone overboard in worrying about what City will offer.


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He said: “We approach each game as it comes and we react to what we see what happens in the game. Trying to predict what might happen can just get you all tangled up so better to be ready and focused on the game itself.

“We have worked on penalties inasmuch as we have information on potential takers if it comes.”

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Although a former Norwich employee, Holman started his goalkeeping career as an academy player at Portman Road, with Wright, and is more concerned with Town winning than City going down.

He said: “First of all I would say it is good for football in this area if the two teams are in the same division so it would be good if they stay up.

“But make no mistake that we will be doing everything we can to win on Sunday. There is no charity in football and we won't be giving them any. I would also say that one game doesn't relegate a team.

“They have two more games to go as we do and I'm more concerned with what Ipswich do.”

Much could be down to the keepers and Holman is convinced both have enough quality to represent their countries once more.

Fabio Capello has seen Wright in action at Chelsea and QPR and Holman dismisses the suggestion that the former England keeper's international days have passed him by completely.

He said: “The day certainly has not gone. Recent addition Joe Lewis has done well but decisions are yet to be made and it is the same with Robert Green. I can't see why not Richard Wright, he still has a lot to offer England.”

Homan worked with David Marshall at City and is convinced he is not far off a Scotland recall.

He added: “David Marshall as a person is a fantastic character very similar to Wrighty although he doesn't always show it and can come across as a bit dour. He is a fabulous young keeper but still young and some way to go but there are a lot of people rate him highly in Scotland.”

If McAuley fails to recover sufficiently from his hamstring problem then Wright will keep hold of the captaincy, and hoping for his first win with the armband on.

Holman said: “I wasn't involved in him being made captain so it was a pleasant surprise and well deserved.

“He had a slow start to the season which we knew he would as he had not had a run of games for awhile but he came through all that.

“The manager was brave in standing by him, and it was touch and go, but it proved to be right.

“It is an absolute pleasure working with Richard. He needs no motivation he just turns up with a big smile on his face and he is a wonderful example to everyone in the dressing room and training ground.

“In terms of ability in terms of enthusiasm and experience he is right up there with the best I have worked with. He is the complete package.”

derek.davis@eadt.co.uk

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