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Saturday 16 December 2017

Wes ready to go again

Hoolahan still has hunger while Wilson looks ahead

Norwich’s Wes Hoolahan. Pic: Getty
Norwich’s Wes Hoolahan. Pic: Getty

Only two weeks short of his 35th birthday, Wes Hoolahan says he will be hungrier than ever for his club next season.

The Championship campaign was a disappointing one for Norwich City as they failed to make the playoffs and a clear-out of players has already begun at Carrow Road.

But Hoolahan will be around next term for what will be his 10th season with the Canaries. His end-of-season form, scoring two goals on the last day of the campaign, is encouraging for Ireland boss Martin O'Neill ahead of the World Cup qualifier at home to Austria next month.

Hoolahan will be 36 by the time the World Cup finals kick off in Russia but the Dubliner feels he has a lot more to give.

"I'm looking forward to my tenth season, although it feels like only yesterday that I joined. I'm enjoying every minute of it. The older you get, the more you enjoy it," says Hoolahan.

"The hunger is still there and I'll be ready to come back and go again next year."

Hoolahan was named as the club's player of the year, an honour he won for the first time. "I've probably got it for an accumulation of what I've done over the last nine years. It's nice to finish it with the two goals and show I can still do it during a good win."

Meanwhile, Marc Wilson has revealed his relief at finally making his debut for West Brom, five months after he joined the club.

Wilson (29) started for the Baggies in a 2-2 draw with Burnley, his first overall Premier League appearance in 16 months and his first outing in the West Brom shirt.

"It was a tough day for me as it's been a long time since I played, almost a year," says Wilson, who joined the Baggies on loan from Bournemouth in January.

"I felt a bit tired coming into the second half but that was to be expected. But I enjoyed it and it was good to play with Jonny Evans, we grew up together," added the Antrim native who hopes to stay in the Baggies side for their test against champions-elect Chelsea on Friday.

Wilson has endured some hard times with club and country of late. His most recent cap was against Oman last August and he hasn't played in a competitive game since before the Euro 2016 finals but he has hopes of forcing his way back into Martin O'Neill's plans for the remainder of the World Cup campaign.

The defender has another full season left on his contract with Bournemouth but does not appear to be in the long-term plans.

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