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Sunday 19 August 2018

Norwich praise for 'one-off' Hoolahan

NORWICH City boss Neil Adams has hailed the impact made by the "unique" Ireland international Wes Hoolahan at the club after they stormed to the top of the Championship table.

A tired-looking Hoolahan was replaced at half-time in the Canaries' recent league game against Birmingham City but he reclaimed his place in the side on Saturday and played a part in a 3-1 win over Hoolahan's former club Blackpool.

That win, combined with dropped points for Nottingham Forest at home to Brighton, allowed Norwich move to the top of the table.

"He is an exceptional player, he is a game winner for you, he can destroy oppositions when he is on it," says Adams.

"Last week [against Birmingham] he was off the pace, and that is the frustrating thing sometimes with him, but taking that 45 minutes aside he has been excellent for me this season."

"Wes is pretty much a unique player. I can't think of anyone who has the same style as him or the same qualities," the City boss added.

"You have players who are sharp and tricky but Wes is a different breed in terms of what he can add to a team.

"He was poor in his last game, he knows that, which is why we took him off and he was one of the first to hold his hands up and say he wasn't at it."

Hoolahan's former Norwich team-mate Anthony Pilkington is delighted to have helped Cardiff City earn a rare league win, at home to Sheffield Wednesday, Pilkington scoring his first goal for the club.

"We needed three points and we are over the moon that we have got that," Pilkington said.

"It was a long time coming. We put in a decent shift in against Derby and wanted to build on that. It is always a difficult place to go and they will be up the top of league.

"If we can keep picking up three points at home and a point away like we have done this last week then we will be right up there. It is only good getting a point like that if you win your next home game and that is what we've done," added Pilkington.

He also claimed that the presence of results of Danny Gabbidon and Scott Young as caretaker managers has helped since Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's exit

"The place has been lifted. Everyone is playing for each other, we will have to make sure that continues no matter who the next manager will be," he said. "You can see that we are all fighting for each other and that could be seen with the win. It is going to be a long, hard season and it doesn't matter where we are now as long as we have a good run towards the end of the season, anything could happen."

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