MARSHALL: TIME TO HIT TOP FORM
New Skipper rallies troops ahead of NorwichSpeaking to Press and Media on Friday morning ahead of City’s home clash with Norwich City, David Marshall spoke of his pride in being given the Captain’s armband – and his hopes of emulating the work done by outgoing skipper, Mark Hudson.
“It’s a great honour to be Cardiff City Captain,” said David. “Obviously after Huds made the move to Huddersfield, the Gaffer called me in and told me he wanted me to take it on permanently. I was very happy to do so.
“Huds was my room-mate for four or five years and he was a terrific leader for us. It’s strange not seeing him about here as he was part of the furniture for so long, but we obviously all wish him well.”
The City stopper represented Scotland last weekend as the Tartan Army fell valiantly to World Champions Germany in Dortmund.
And David reflected on a positive experience against the very best opposition, saying: “It was a good experience but a disappointing result in the end, especially considering the way in which we played in the second half as I thought we could have got a draw.
“Before the game we weren’t expecting too much, but we’ve got a big game next against Georgia and need to get some points on the board now.
“I think Manuel Neuer is the best in the world after his performances in the World Cup and what he’s done for Bayern Munich in the last few years so it was a good experience to play against him too.
“He sent his shirt to me after the game as well. It’s not something I usually like doing, swapping shirts, but it was good to get his.”
Now, with six Cardiff City matches still to play in September, Marshall stressed that it is vital for the squad to build some positive momentum as they enter one of the busiest sections of the season, adding: “We’ve got some tough games ahead of us. Obviously we’ve got three games in a week now too. We’ve had a reasonable start and without playing really, really well, we’ve got enough points on the board.
“The next month before the next international break is a big one now as our aim at the start of the season was obviously to finish in the top two.
“When you’re up top around eighth or ninth position you are still very close, but we’ll definitely be looking to be at least in the top six before we break up for the next international fixtures.”
If City are to make more early progress up the table, they will need to play well against fellow promotion hopefuls Norwich tomorrow. Marshall is confident that his former club will provide a stern test at the CCS.
“I had good times at Norwich,” said the ‘keeper. “We had a few struggles though so obviously they are a better team now with a much better squad.
“They are obviously one of the favourites to go up and rightly so. I tipped them to be right up there at the end of the season myself, and I’ve not changed my mind as they’ve made a good few signings and started well.
“I’m looking forward to the game, especially as it’s a home game. We need to start by winning our home matches as that was one of the big plus points when we got promoted.
“We’ve started the home campaign pretty well so far so hopefully we can continue that tomorrow.”
And finally, Marshall believes that the new additions to the Bluebirds squad during the recently closed transfer window, including Bruno Ecuele Manga, should help the team to cope with the pile-up of fixtures that now lies ahead.
“We’ve got a big squad now,” he reflected. “It’s obviously got a lot of quality with the new signings and players that have come down from the Premier League as well.
“We need to get everybody working together to get a level of consistency now. Even though we’ve not played really well so far, we’ve done okay and we were unbeaten until the last kick of the game against Wolves.
“We’ve been hard to beat, but with the quality that we’ve got in the team now we’re looking to gel over the next couple of months and really hit top form.”
Watch Marshall’s pre-Norwich interview in full on Cardiff City Player. A teaser can be viewed below: