Dean Smith WILL stay on as Norwich boss despite defeat away at Aston Villa consigning them to a record SIXTH Premier League relegation… as he sets his sights on an instant top-flight return next season
- Norwich were finally relegated from the Premier League on Saturday afternoon
- The Canaries have been rooted to the bottom of the table for most of the season
- A 2-0 defeat away at Aston Villa confirmed their drop back to the Championship
- But Dean Smith will remain in charge for their bid to return to the top flight
Dean Smith is set to stay on as Norwich boss and will be tasked with winning an instant return to the Premier League after their relegation was confirmed on Saturday.
The Canaries were dealt an instant return to the Championship after a deserved defeat at Smith’s former club Aston Villa.
But the manager insists his focus is on winning promotion next season – and has the backing of sporting director Stuart Webber.
‘It’s a bitter disappointment and I fully take my responsibility,’ he said. ‘There’s been an inevitability about it and over the season our performances haven’t been good enough.
Dean Smith is set to remain in charge of Norwich despite their Premier League relegation
‘I’ve got an English O-Level but I had to go and look at the word apathy this week after some debate from Norwich fans. We’ve tried hard.
‘It’s imperative we have a tilt at the Championship. The last two times our club has been in it, you’ve won it.’
Smith was brought in to replace Daniel Farke in November with the club rock bottom and it is understood the club were realistic about a potential relegation.
The club appointed him with the primary goal of keeping them in the Premier League but also pinpointed him as a man to take them back up the following year if they were relegated.
Defeat away at Aston Villa on Saturday confirmed the Canaries are heading back down
Smith will now be tasked with guiding them back to the top flight in the 2022/23 campaign
‘We move on very quickly now and we are planning to get back up,’ added Smith. We’ve got four games to go and the club is very well run. We’ve only got one player out of contract in the summer so there’s not an awful lot we have to do.
‘We’ve been planning for this for the last few months. We will move forward as a football club.’
After their defeat at Villa, Norwich captain Grant Hanley admitted the club ‘haven’t been good enough’ throughout the campaign.
No team has suffered more Premier League relegations than the Canaries, who have now been sent down on a record six occasions.
Norwich captain Grant Hanley (left) admitted they ‘haven’t been good enough’ this season
‘I’m disappointed with our result. It is probably fair, we haven’t been good enough this season,’ Hanley told the BBC.
‘It is difficult for me to comment on anything right now. Emotions are high, we gave our all but it wasn’t enough and the story of our season.
‘It is important not to look too far ahead, we still have pride to play for. Then we will see where we stand.’
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