No insider information on Norwich City for in-form Blackburn Rovers left back Markus Olsson

Markus Olsson

Markus Olsson

First published in News Lancashire Telegraph: Photograph of the Author by , Blackburn Rovers reporter

MARKUS Olsson’s twin brother may play for Norwich City but there is no chance the in-form Blackburn Rovers defender will be privy to insider information ahead of tonight’s Carrow Road encounter.

That is because Martin Olsson, who left fellow left back Markus and Rovers behind last July when he made the move to the Canaries, has refused to give anything away.

So much so that that he did not even give his sibling an inkling of his prospects of facing his former club this evening.

As it transpires Martin will watch the match from the stands.

Last night he was hit with an immediate three-game ban, along with a £3,000 fine, after he was charged with improper conduct by the FA for making physical contact with referee Simon Hooper prior his sending off for a second bookable offence in Norwich’s opening day 1-0 defeat at Wolves.

The 20-capped Sweden international sat out his side’s 3-0 home win over Watford on Saturday with a one-match suspension.

But up until 5pm yesterday he was still set to be included in Neil Adams’ squad for the clash with Rovers.

However there is no chance of that now happening after the Canaries confirmed the club would not be appealing against the ban.

Markus, speaking earlier in the day, was none the wiser either.

He said: “I don’t think Martin will tell me anything – I don’t even know if he’s playing myself!

“He told me a couple of days ago that they would tell him a couple of days ago – I don’t know if he’s dragging it out and trying to hide something!

“We’ll just have to wait and see.

“It would be fun to play against him but he’s a good player as well and he would be a big threat for them, bombing down that left side at home on their own pitch.”

Markus will certainly start tonight.

He has made the left back position his own after Tommy Spurr was struck down by injury.

Spurr was an ever present for Rovers last season until a niggling groin problem ruled him out of the final three games of the campaign.

The problem continued to trouble him during pre-season.

However Spurr’s latest groin injury, sustained in training on the eve of the season opener at home to Cardiff City, is unrelated.

But his loss has been Markus’s gain and the twice-capped Sweden international has hardly put a foot wrong in the five matches in which he has deputised for Spurr.

“I thought I played very well at left-back at the start of the season two years ago but then I got an injury, I was out for a long time and then I had small niggles here and there,” said Markus, who followed his twin brother Martin to Rovers in January 2012.

“So this is probably the most games I’ve been playing consistently since then and I’m feeling good, working hard and trying to stay fit.

“Tommy did well, he’s a solid defender, he was playing all the games and he wasn’t injured.

“But now he’s got a knock and it happens in football.

“We’ve got one or two players out of the team but once everybody is fit we’re going to have big competition again and that’s what keeps you focused.

“That’s what kept me focused last season when I wasn’t playing. As much as I wanted to play, I knew I had to work hard and now I’ve got my chance and I want to take it.

“In training and in games, it’s about working hard.

“We’ve got a good team spirit here and that’s what you need – everybody pushing each other whether they’re playing or not.”

Norwich, who were relegated from the Premier League last season, are the bookies’ favourites for tonight’s encounter.

But Rovers, who will be cheered on by around 350 travelling supporters, are unbeaten in their last 14 Championship matches and make the long trek to Norfolk on the back of their first win of the campaign at Blackpool on Saturday.

And Markus, who signed a new one-year deal with the club in the summer, said: “Norwich are a good team but we have confidence.

“Everybody is looking sharp, so why can’t we go there and give them problems?”

Markus was posed a problem at Blackpool on Saturday when he received an early booking for a contentious foul on Tomasz Cywka.

“I don’t think I should have got a yellow card as I was quicker than him and I got the ball back, so I was surprised when the referee gave me a yellow card,” said Markus.

“I had to keep my head cool and the other players told me not to go hard in the tackle, to stay back a little bit.

“I managed the 90 minutes and we got the win – and that’s the most important thing.

“I think everyone in the team defended well, from the back four to the strikers, so it was a good team effort, and I think we deserved the win.”

Like Spurr before him, Markus has swiftly struck up an understanding with Craig Conway down Rovers’ left flank.

And the 26-year-old knows the influential wideman could have another big role to play tonight.

Markus said: “Craig’s a good player, he’s good on the ball, he’s a good crosser, both with his left and right foot, and he works hard as well, always tracking his runner.

“He makes it easier for me and for the other left backs he’s been playing with.”

Comments (3)

Please log in to enable comment sorting

5:37pm Tue 19 Aug 14

darwen1946 says...

Hope Rhodes is wide awake to-night !
Hope Rhodes is wide awake to-night ! darwen1946
  • Score: 1

5:59pm Tue 19 Aug 14

SuperBlues says...

Fair play to Olsson he has improved his game defensively and has been impressive both games this season so far hope he keeps it up and gives Tommy Spurr some good competition for that left back role
Fair play to Olsson he has improved his game defensively and has been impressive both games this season so far hope he keeps it up and gives Tommy Spurr some good competition for that left back role SuperBlues
  • Score: 2

6:47pm Tue 19 Aug 14

A Darener says...

Aren't twins supposed to be psychic?
Aren't twins supposed to be psychic? A Darener
  • Score: 2

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