Steven Smith hoping for drama-free spell
Steven Smith will be hoping things will settle down from here on in – despite just becoming a father for the second time.
The left-back was given two-minutes' notice before making his first start for the Canaries at Bristol City more than two weeks' ago, thanks to Adam Drury's injury during the pre-match warm-up – and that after an ankle injury kept him on the sidelines since early pre-season.
Then the 25-year-old was sweating over whether his partner, Claire, would give birth while he was in London helping City gain an encouraging point at Championship leaders Queens Park Rangers on Saturday as a second half substitute.
In the end, his baby girl arrived on Sunday afternoon – in record time.
So with Drury an early doubt for tonight's visit of Crystal Palace, Smith is hoping for a drama-free build-up to what would be his full home debut since joining from Rangers in the summer.
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'I didn't really know the situation we were going to be in (on Saturday); we were only two or three hours away but I thought if we get through this one we've got two home games coming up so at least I'd be at home, so she picked a good day really,' said Smith, who feels he still has plenty more to come on the pitch – now that life will hopefully settle down for the likeable Scot.
'You don't really get prepared for the tempo of the match so when I went on I struggled a wee bit personally (at QPR), but you learn to deal with that; I'm just glad to get away with a clean sheet,' said Smith.
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'The games I have played in I have been thrown in at the deep end and not really been prepared for it, so I will be hoping to give a better account of myself.
'I have not played football for a while as well, so it is going to take time. The adrenaline probably got me through the Bristol game and that's when you start to struggle a little bit, but I am looking forward to it.
'It is always nice to have that home advantage. We have the momentum and we're picking up good results so we just need to keep that going and keep working hard and keep doing what we are doing and we won't be far away.'
City have a home game against another struggling team, Middlesbrough, on Saturday – who are also managerless following Gordon Strachan's departure yesterday – but Smith knows the vagaries of the beautiful game don't allow for complacency.
'If you have two or three bad results you can soon be down to 10th or 11th or even further down, so you have to keep that focus, keep that winning mentality and that's something that the manager drills into you,' he said. 'You have to keep that winning mentality and that's what the boys will try to do.'