Alex Neil has been installed as the new manager of Norwich City, and he admits this was an opportunity he simply couldn’t turn down.
The Canaries have been on the lookout for a new boss since Neil Adams quit on 5 January, and they had been linked with a host of names including their former players Mike Phelan and Tim Sherwood. However, they have instead caused something of a surprise by opting for Neil who, at the age of just 33, becomes the second youngest manager in England’s top four divisions.
Neill, a former midfielder, had playing spells with Airdrieonians, Barnsley, Mansfield Town, and most notably of all Hamilton Academical for whom he made over 200 league appearances. He went on to manage the New Douglas Park club, having impressed whilst in charge on a caretaker basis in April 2013, and led them into the Premiership in his first full season at the helm.
The Scot takes over a Carrow Road club who lost their place in the Premier League last season, and have at times struggled to get to grips with the task of making an instant return to the top-flight. They are currently in seventh position ahead of Saturday’s match at top-of-the table Bournemouth, but a win at Dean Court would see them close the gap to just eight points.
“I’m absolutely delighted to have the opportunity to manage a club of the stature of Norwich,” Neil told the club’s website. “It’s an exciting challenge at a huge club and one that I’m looking forward to. I’ve watched a lot of Premier League and Championship football over the years and I’ve always been really impressed with Carrow Road and the Norwich fans and the way they get behind the team.
“It’s a forward-thinking club with a fantastic infrastructure and big ambition which matches my own ambitions. Of course I’m sad to leave Hamilton, a brilliant club which has been such a huge part of my life for so long. But when an opportunity as exciting as this with a club like Norwich comes your way, you take it. The aim now is simply to win as many games as possible and move up the table.”
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