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Leon McKenzie - Lewis Grabban’s Norwich City move is a family affair

PUBLISHED: 08:00 13 June 2014 | UPDATED: 09:50 13 June 2014

Norwich City stalwart Leon McKenzie is backing his family relative Lewis Grabban to prove his worth after his recent transfer move from Bournemouth. Picture by Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

Norwich City stalwart Leon McKenzie is backing his family relative Lewis Grabban to prove his worth after his recent transfer move from Bournemouth. Picture by Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

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Lewis Grabban can fire Norwich City back to the Premier League, insists his relative and Canaries’ cult hero Leon McKenzie.

Grabban has followed the same path from Crystal Palace trainee to Carrow Road as his second cousin and McKenzie is predicting he can have a similar impact after becoming Neil Adams’ first summer signing.

McKenzie’s arrival sparked City’s surge to the old First Division title in 2003/04 and the former footballer turned professional boxer is convinced Grabban can maintain his prolific Championship strike rate at Bournemouth.

The 36-year-old insists the forward will have plenty of hunger and desire to prove his worth after failing to make the grade at Selhurst Park in his younger days.

“He has not had it easy in his career, a bit like myself,” said McKenzie. “I had six years at Palace and did well but my career never really kicked off until I left and dropped down to the third tier. I worked my way back up and sometimes you have to do that. It is not a bad thing to take a couple of steps back to learn your trade and mature. He has done it exactly right.

“He got 22 goals in the Championship and that is an excellent return. To get 20 goals in any league for a striker is job done. I would always say if you have a striker who can get you 15 to 20 then you are going in the right direction. It wouldn’t surprise me if he does very well. It might take him a little while to settle but that is the case for any player moving to a new club. In terms of his ability he is a match-winner.”

Grabban will take nothing for granted after earning his big-money move to the Canaries.

“He is a nice lad and a grounded individual,” said McKenzie. “Compared to me he is not as bubbly and lively but don’t misunderstand or misinterpret that. He was at Palace with me, although he is a bit younger and Norwich have got a good player on their hands. He is the complete package.”

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