Sunday 18 August 2019

Alex Neil says Norwich need to keep changing their style to succeed

Norwich manager Alex Neil is ready to tinker with his tactics again ahead of the visit of Arsenal on Sunday
Norwich manager Alex Neil is ready to tinker with his tactics again ahead of the visit of Arsenal on Sunday

Manager Alex Neil accepts Norwich cannot rely on just playing one way if they are to remain in the Barclays Premier League.

The Canaries host Arsenal on Sunday following promising displays away against both Manchester City and then Chelsea, but neither of which returned a positive result.

Neil opted for a more pragmatic approach in the last home game, which yielded a 1-0 win over Swansea.

The Scot believes Norwich must remain flexible if they are to avoid being dragged into a relegation dogfight.

"Over recent weeks, we have found a decent balance, but we can still improve," Neil said at a press conference.

"We are going to have to be a team that changes our style from week to week to get results."

Neil added: "We will be regarded as one of the smaller teams in the league, but even when so-called bigger teams come to our place, they have been happy to sit behind the ball, soak up pressure and hit you on the counter attack and that sort of surprised me.

"You would have thought that some of them would have come here and tried to impose themselves, go toe-to-toe but that has not been the case and has been quite surprising.

"Teams have got themselves into a method of counter-attacking on a regular basis and so stick to their principles, regardless of who they are playing against.

So that is something new for us, coming up against sort of the bigger teams, with them being happy to surrender the ball and it how you make best use of that."

Arsenal were beaten at West Brom last weekend, but recovered with an impressive midweek victory over Dynamo Zagreb in the Champions League.

Neil knows full well what challenge awaits his side, who are just three points ahead of the relegation zone heading into the weekend's games.

"Arsenal will want to put points on the board," he said.

"They have had a good season and are the hardest attacking team to stop."

Neil confirmed Norway midfielder Alex Tettey was out with a groin injury suffered while away on international duty.

Captain Russell Martin is expected back in the squad having missed the Chelsea match through personal reasons.

PA Media

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