Norwich City v Manchester United: Dean Smith's pre-match press conference
Premier League football returns to Carrow Road this weekend. Getty Images- Stephen Pond. 

Since taking over at Carrow Road, Dean Smith has won one, drawn twice and lost once. Before the game against Manchester United, Dean Smith spoke to the media on Friday morning.

In his bulletin, Smith gave a team news update, talked about the importance of Covid vaccinations and gave his thoughts on how the Premier League is shaping up.

  • Team news 

Norwich will be without a couple of players with knocks, a couple who have "Covid related issues" and Mathias Normann, Sam Byram and Brandon Williams will all miss out too.

The manager told canaries.co.uk: "We have got a couple of players who have picked up knocks and we have got a couple of Covid-19 related issues that we are waiting on results from this morning, so while I can't give you any names there are three or four players that were are waiting on news for at the moment." 

"There's a couple of players we were worried about so we've tested and we'll wait for the PCR results back on them- they're just feeling a little bit unwell. It's not likely to be linked to the game last week at Tottenham but it's just a precaution in general given how the nation is at the moment."

"They could definitely come into our thoughts if the PCR tests come back and they're ok then they'll be in the fold with us, that's for sure".

Brandon Williams will miss the game as he is on loan from Manchester United and will not be eligible to face his parent club.

Smith said: "Obviously he's on loan from Manchester United and so is unavailable. I thought he was excellent last week against Tottenham as well and he's coming into his own". 

Sam Byram has been playing a few games for Norwich's under 23's but his manager confirmed that he will not be involved in the squad this Saturday. 

"I think it's a little bit too soon for Sam, he's only played a sixty-minute game so far or seventy minutes. He's had two exposures to games and we'll look into Sam rejoining the squad which would be a big boost for him and us because I've really liked what I've seen so far from him in training. I remember him from before when he was at Leeds. He's a very very talented player who unfortunately has gone through a real rough time with injuries but he'll be like having a new signing coming into the squad".

Mathias Normann will also miss the game having also missed the game against Spurs too with a groin injury.

Smith said: "No he won't be available for this weekend although he is feeling a lot better and we're certainly hopeful for having him back over the Christmas period. Villa could be possible, he could make Villa but we'll see how he is over the weekend." 

  • Norwich's players and the Covid vaccine

"It's very important (to get vaccinated) but we can only follow our Government's guidance and they've made not compulsory, it's up to the person whether they want to have the vaccination or not so whilst we believe it's the right thing to go and do and while we've advised all of our playing staff and staff at the Football Club to have it done there are people who will have their own reasons for not doing it and we are lead on our Governance for that."

 Since arriving at the Club Norwich's form has improved and the team have doubled their points tally. Dean Smith gave his thoughts on how the Premier League season is shaping up and the difference between teams at the top of the League compared to the rest.

He said: "It hasn't surprised me that the likes of Liverpool, Manchester City and Chelsea have looked like they're running away at the top of the League so they appear to be the teams who are beating everybody else where you can go and get a result against the Manchester United, Tottenham and Arsenal this season or that's how it's looked so far or appeared. 

"It's very rare that at this stage of the season that you'll see a team like Manchester United and Arsenal have lost five or six games already so it's that kind of season that we're in and I think that's what's kept everybody closes down the bottom. We've helped ourselves by the last four games, doubling our points tally which has got us in and amongst it now and a couple of wins puts you 15th/14th in the League and that's what we have to be looking at to try and do."

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Martin Atkinson will referee the clash at Carrow Road. Getty images- Alex Livesey

The Canaries take on Manchester United at Carrow Road on Saturday, December 11th at 5:30 pm. The game will be shown live on Sky Sports

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