Paddy Davitt, Norwich City Writer
Monday, April 7, 2014
Norwich City chief executive David McNally is convinced Neil Adams will keep the Canaries in the Premier League after replacing Chris Hughton.
McNally was in bullish mood at Colney on Monday afternoon after Adams was officially unveiled in front of the waiting media alongside club captain Russell Martin. Adams has five matches to ensure the Canaries survive, starting with a trip to fellow relegation rivals Fulham on Saturday.
McNally was forced to defend the timing of Hughton’s dismissal and the board’s decision to appoint the club’s FA Youth Cup winning coach.
“We believe with Neil (Adams) in charge of the next five games we have a greater chance,” he said. “Every game at this level is tough. Yes, we know our run-in is tough but we are confident that we have enough to improve our league position. We felt we were left with no choice. Recent results and performances have been disappointing. We have lost four of the last six games. We have lost seven consecutive away games so we felt unfortunately although it is said to see Chris leave we we’re left with no choice to ensure we have the best possible chance of staying in this league. As a football club we are very supportive of our football managers and we give them every chance to get things right. Clearly it is a results business and against our peer group rivals it has not been good enough.”
McNally had been quoted as saying Hughton’s brief was to keep City out of the bottom three but the chief executive insisted the recent downturn in form make it imperative the club acted.
“That comment may have been taken from a 20 minute interview I gave but I have not always said that,” he said. “After a difficult spell earlier in the season prior to the West Ham game I said to Chris, ‘keep us out of the bottom three.’ We are but seven away defeats and four points in six games is relegation form. This great club needs to do something about it. We’ll stay up and we have made this change with that in mind.
“If you looked at this situation two months ago we had not had this sort of prolonged run. We hadn’t lost four games in six and taken four points in six games. Up until January 1 we had won two away games at Stoke and West Brom. That may not have been particularly fantastic but compared to the away form since January 2 we would take it every day of the week.”