Sliding tackles and winning a warm-up - Krul hails Norwich star's key ingredient
Emi Buendia's fight is what makes him a brilliant Championship commodity for Norwich City - and Tim Krul knows it for a fact.
Buendia’s stunning strike was enough to beat Swansea on Friday night and ensure the Canaries headed into the final 10 games of the campaign top of the pile.
In fact, the 22-year-old has been involved in every one of City’s 21 Championship wins this season – and City have failed to win any of the league games in which Buendia has not featured.
The £1.5m summer signing from La Liga side Getafe has shown his technical prowess numerous times since his arrival but for Norwich’s number one, it’s something else that has underpinned Buendia’s progress in his first season of English football.
“He’s got the fight – he is a winner,” said Krul. “I saw him on Friday morning (before the Swansea game) and we were in for a warm-up, it was two touch – and he was on his knees sliding on the artificial turf and trying to win.
“That is what you see on the pitch and that’s the quality we need: the fight. It’s going to be a dogfight for the next 10 games.
“We are showing some great quality football, I think everybody would agree with that. We have been really exciting and I think the money to watch us play has been well spent this season.
“I don’t really care if we keep conceding two a game and we then score three in the next 10 games; I’ll be happy because that means we’re up.
“Of course my job is clean sheets but listen, it’s a team job. We score together and we concede together, and you can see that the unity is there.
“Onel Hernandez up and down, defending as well. He knows the dirty work has to be done. Emi is the same.
“The way we play is an attacking style, we get after teams and we put them under pressure. But that means also on the way back, there is a lot of space for the other teams.
“We are successful the way we play, but it is not all we know. If 11 guys get behind us and we get after them, we are a quality side and we are showing that.
“We won’t change that and we have got so many goals in this side, we always know we will score.”
It’s all easy to say and believe now – but when Krul was being courted by City head coach Daniel Farke and sporting director Stuart Webber as a free agent in the summer, such a scenario as the current Championship table would have been a little trickier to sell.
“No, no, no,” said Krul, when asked if this was expected in June. “I remember I did an interview with you guys and we we’re hoping for a play-off position.
“I really liked what the boss was saying to me over the phone. He said he was going to have a mix of young, exciting talent. He wanted to play football and wanted to attack.
“Stuart Webber as well. They have got such a great set-up here now and the club is really going places.
“Listen, the truth is always in the pudding – but to be stood here now top of the league, 72 points with 10 games to go, it is really exciting.
“We have put ourselves in a great position and we can see the light at the end of the tunnel. But at the end of the day, 72 points is not getting you anything at the moment.”
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