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Opening-day blip is a thing of the past for Nelson

PUBLISHED: 11:31 08 September 2009 | UPDATED: 11:59 06 July 2010

Norwich defender Michael Nelson is confident he has finally put his opening-day nightmare behind him. The 29-year-old will remember his full City debut for all the wrong reasons in years to come after being part of a backline breached seven times in the humiliating League One defeat to Colchester.

Norwich defender Michael Nelson is confident he has finally put his opening-day nightmare behind him.

The 29-year-old will remember his full City debut for all the wrong reasons in years to come after being part of a backline breached seven times in the humiliating League One defeat to Colchester.

Nelson was frozen out for the next five matches but has been restored to a new-look defence that has now kept back-to-back clean sheets.

“I don't know if it's gone from everyone's mind,” he said. “Maybe it's good to keep some of the things that happened that day in your mind. You don't just sweep them under the carpet and forget about them. Certainly the bad things that happened on that day, you do well to look back on them and make sure you don't do them again. Everyone deals with it differently. Some people just blank it out of the memory and forget about it. Other people will deal with it in different ways.”

Nelson, who opened his Canary account in spectacular fashion at former club Hartlepool, was denied a second consecutive goal against Walsall at the weekend when his effort was ruled out for a foul by Grant Holt.

“Grant said the referee turned round and said he'd fouled the keeper but Grant said he'd just stood his ground,” said Nelson. “I think it's one of those where as soon as you touch the keeper inside the six-yard box he gets a foul. I didn't see it myself but he disallowed it.”

Replays suggested defender Clayton McDonald was the only player who may have been obstructed before Nelson's header flew in.

“I managed to lose my marker and come in, it was just a case of getting something on the ball,” he said. “It was a great ball in by Paul McVeigh and it just needed a contact on it to put it in the net. We can take a clean sheet as a positive from the game but a goal would have been really nice.

“I think you'd have got good odds at the bookies on 0-0 with the amount of goals there have been lately. It's nice that we kept a clean sheet, three in a row now, it just gives us that little bit of stability and lets the lads in front know that if we are going to keep a clean sheet we only need one goal to win the game.

“They had a couple of half-chances and us the same, but there were no real clear-cut opportunities. It was one of those games where it was played in the middle third rather than the final third. But if you're not going to win a game you've got to make sure you don't lose it. We may look back at the end of the season and it might be a vital point.”

After five games in 15 days under their new boss, City now face an enforced break until Monday's League One televised trip to MK Dons.

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