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Showing content with the highest reputation since 18/06/19 in Posts

  1. 22 points
    I have had several posters ask me recently to write a piece about my early supporting days back in the early 1950’s and as we are in the fairly quiet time between seasons I thought I would give it a go. This part I call "How it all started" My Grand parents lived in King Street and many years it was the family meeting place before going off to the match. I must have been six or seven years old when I first became curious about “The Canaries” or “Carrow Road”. I think it all started while listening to bits of excited conversation between my dad and my uncles on Saturday lunchtimes in the early 1950’s. The excited tones must have got through to me because I soon began to pester my dad to take me to a match. My dad was an engraver and sign writer and couldn’t leave the shop on Saturdays so my first trip down to Carrow Road was with my uncle Bert and my cousin Mike. Now many people say they have vivid recollections of their first game but in all honestly I can’t recall very much other than I think it was a pre-season game which they used to call Possibles v Probables. I can’t remember the score or anything other than the surge of noise and excitement every time the ball got near the goalmouth and I was pretty much hooked on it from that first moment. This was in the decade following WW2 and apart from the football, the cinema and radio there wasn’t a great deal in the way of entertainment. Not that many could afford it anyway, the country was skint and food rationing was only now coming to an end. I think this was the 1953/54 season and although I was taken to three or four league matches I have very little recollection of them now. What I can remember are the names, Tom Johnstone, Alfy Ackerman, Johnny Gavin and Bobby Brennan. I have no visual memories of the first two but the latter two were to become my earliest hero’s. In the early 1950’s the kick off time was 3.15pm while it was light enough and then 2.15pm once the clocks went back. Floodlit matches didn’t start until the latter part of the decade. We used to head off down King St, past innumerable pubs, shops and factories, the vast majority which have passed into memory. Rouen Road didn’t exist at that time, just a multitude of little lanes and alleys that ran all the way down from Ber St. The whole area was a maze of Victorian terraces, interspersed with the odd open space still evidencing the scale of the bombing that had scarred our City a decade before. As a small boy I found enormous pleasure in exploring those narrow alleys with their flights of steps going up to different levels and with shops and pubs on every corner. The crowds would stream down them on match days and at each junction with King St. hundreds more were added to the ever increasing throng headed for Carrow Bridge, for there was no other way across the Wensum, except at Thorpe Station. There seemed to be a pub every fifty yards or so, The Builders Arms, The Tuns, The Ship, The Old Barge, The Wherry, The Ferry Boat, The Kingsway and probably a few more that I’ve forgotten. The abiding smell was of beer from the pubs and Breweries and tobacco smoke because virtually every man had a fag or a pipe on the go and everyone seemed to wear a hat or a cap and a gabardine raincoat. Nowadays it’s fashionable to turn up in the latest replica kit or during inclement weather, a woolly NCFC hat with matching gloves and scarf. Back in the 50’s most fans just came in their ordinary daily clothes and just occasionally you would see somebody with a home knitted yellow and green scarf. For FA Cup games you might see a few rosettes and of course wooden clackers that seem now to have largely passed into history. The bright modern stadium we see today bares little resemblance to the Carrow Road of the 1950’s. It was then a fairly drab looking structure with dark painted fencing and wooden turnstiles. It looked exactly what it was, something that had been knocked together in double quick time without thought for any long term utility. What will always remain in the memory are the huge green painted iron gates that used to be swung open by groundsman Russell Alison just after halftime. There were always a few who couldn’t afford it and would creep in and see part of the game for free. The terraces were just large earth mounds covered in grass at the rear with two or three sets of concrete steps leading up to the summit. The fencing at the back of the terracing was simply a line of elongated railway sleepers set on end with the occasional bit of advertising hoarding on top. It wasn’t permitted but at big matches people would climb on these for a better view. We usually entered from Carrow Road into the ground ( I think it was either nine pence or maybe a shilling for boys) and then went up the side steps onto the River End terrace. This was only partially concreted and for many years a large potion of the standing terracing consisted of railway sleepers. We called it the River End for obvious reasons but in reality it was part of “The Ground” as you could stand anywhere right round as far as the corner of the Barclay for the same price. It was all open terracing; the only cover was the Barclay and Main stand. In the corner where they built the Disabled stand was a curved bit of terracing that stood beneath the old Pinkun Score-board. It was a large black painted structure with letters from A to Z painted on it. At halftime a man would come out of a little door and hang numbers on hooks underneath each letter. If you had a programme you could match up the games with the letters on the board. You may well laugh but that was the state of technology at the time. Mobile phones and the Internet were something out of the Eagle comic and Dan Dare “Pilot of the Future”. You had no knowledge at all of other games and results unless you got home in time for Sports Report on the BBC at five o’clock. You could not enter the ground from directly behind the South stand because there was a water filled **** that ran up from the river. I think this was still there even into the 1970’s. We used to walk round from the River End and stand half a dozen rows back and directly in line with the penalty area. I think that is why many of my early memories are of goals scored at that end. One that always sticks in my mind is Bobby Brennan’s opening goal against Sheffield Utd in the ’59 Cup run. After the South Stand was covered in 1960 I used to move to which ever end we were shooting in and change at half time because that decade was mainly a dull time and there was nearly always plenty of room. It was during that time when we said goodbye to the railway sleepers and all of the terracing was concreted. In the early days there was a concrete slope that you could use to exit the South stand if you wanted to leave by the Thorpe End. When the Stand was improved and extended this was eliminated and you could only get out at the corner through a smallish opening that led to a narrow flight of steps. At the final whistle there was a rush for this exit and you were squeezed out above a precarious 30 foot drop. Thankfully there was a strong steel barrier to save the unwary. The back of the Barclay was just a grass covered mound with steps leading up. There were brick toilets in both corners I think and a large wooden building serving as a bar for half-time refreshment which consisted mainly of bottles of Steward and Patterson’s Light Ale. When the second half resumed there would be hundreds of empty bottles left on the shelves that ran along the front of the bar. If it rained hard you had the choice of the Barclay Stand and at any time during the match you had the option to pay either three-pence or sixpence to transfer through a little gate in the fencing to get under cover. If I went in the Barclay I liked to stand to the right of goal and it was from here that I have a strong memory of standing with my dad in 1960 the night we beat Southend 4-3 to gain promotion to Division 2. We lived just off Plumstead Road at the time and used to get the 92 bus to Rosary corner. We would walk back and he would tell me stories about the old days when City played at the Nest on Rosary Road . Because of his work he could only get to evening matches so those few occasions that we stood together are especially treasured in my memory. I remember him taking me to the first ever floodlit match atCarrow Road in 1957. It was a friendly against Sunderland, I still have the programme. The façade of the main stand was the only brick built structure. The seating was mostly wooden forms with a numbered space. Only the centre block had tip up wooden seats but that was for the toffs and well out of our reach. In front of the seated area was a narrow standing terrace about ten steps wide that was called The Enclosure. You could get a transfer into it from the ground for a small sum. I stood in there a few times but I only ever recall going in the main stand on one occasion. That was on a rather chilly Boxing Day in 1958 when my dad decided it would be a Christmas treat. We played Reading and Roy McCrohan scored the only goal with 25 yard scorcher at the Barclay End. It’s over sixty years ago but I can still see it as though it was yesterday and it still brings a tear to my eye when I think of it. I'm sorry if it's a bit long but once I started the memories came flooding back and I found it hard to stop.
  2. 5 points
    I'm making a Goan seafood vindaloo this evening. Tomorrow is going to be challenging.
  3. 4 points
    I think if, after what Webber and Farke have achieved so far, you start to have 'doubts' on the 21st June, dare I suggest, DCB, you might not have what it takes to get through a prem season..
  4. 4 points
    I think Dickens wrote something about the relative performance of East Anglian teams last season. "It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair, we had everything before us, we had nothing before us, we were all going direct to heaven, we were all going direct the other way..."
  5. 4 points
    Wow, a thread specifically made for pervs and yet this is somehow the creepiest post...
  6. 4 points
    If Jordan Rhodes is our 2nd choice next season I will be seriously concerned.
  7. 3 points
    It's a shame that we've missed out on an (allegedly) exciting talent, but considering we were spending £3m on a player for a position we're pretty well covered in I'm not that disappointed. However, criticising the lad for lacking ambition or being motivated by money is harsh in the extreme. OK, the SPL is a dreadful league nowadays, but Celtic are still a big club and by far the strongest side in the country, so you can understand the attraction for any young Scottish player. He can win trophies, stay where he's settled, develop as a footballer, play in front of 50,000 every other week and then maybe move to a bigger club in two or three years, similar to van Dijk, Wanyama, Dembele etc. Like I said, it's a shame he chose Celtic over us, but I don't blame the kid at all for doing it.
  8. 3 points
    I suspect that there's a gem in the pipeline ..... it could be one of the few mentioned earlier in this thread, as they seem to come to prominence in the blink of an eyelid and then disappear from the headlines just as rapidly. Mbaye Diagne from Turkey seemed a good fit, for example, but not at £17m. Webber seems determined to stick to his principles and if he does eventually give way in some shape or form I suspect it won't be by much. I played through his latest interview yesterday and agreed with everything he said. It was like treacle coming from his mouth and going straight on to my toast. I'm inclined to think that, should we fail next season, my support will remain much more rigid than it has at times in the past when our excursions into the elite have disappointed due to the lack of real clarity of direction ... from the belated acquisition of Dean Ashton, through the absurd timing of the removal of Hughton and onto the apparent panic buys of Alex Neil. McNally called relegation a "fate worse than death." These words will likely never come from Stuart Webber's mouth as he clearly has a strict , sensible and realistic plan of action which seems equipped for any eventuality.
  9. 3 points
    Smells of an agent wanting Celtic to come back with a better offer. This is not the kind of player we want, if he wants to play in a mickey mouse league where he can win a medal every season because they only have 2 or 3 tough games a year then he's not the kind of player we want or need. Come here because your want to, of course negotiate yourself a good wage but any player/agent who wants to use us to get the move he wants is not for me.
  10. 3 points
    I don't think Webber will be fazed by the lack of additions so far. He's gone on record saying if we go down, so be it, we will not risk the future of the Club and if we can't get the right players in, we should go with what we've got and I, for one agree with him.
  11. 3 points
    Dean and Flecky lay down early pant-wetting marker!
  12. 3 points
    Looks like Jools knows as little about football as he does about politics.
  13. 3 points
    A visible stop-clock should be introduced alongside VAR. It seems to work well in Rugby Union, and it would clarify to managers, players and fans alike exactly what time is left towards the end of a game. VAR will introduce ridiculous amounts of minutes after the ‘90’ which no doubt will add unnecessary controversy.
  14. 3 points
  15. 3 points
    Good stuff Ricardo, but can you remember what you did last Tuesday ?
  16. 3 points
    Well, I had the good fortune of having a chat with Mr Rhodes this morning; he was at Gravity with his daughter. After some standard Dad chat I came out with it and asked if he was staying. He answered, "I really hope so, it'd be a dream come true." He then said one of Norwich or Wednesday start training a week on Friday and the offer start a week on Monday (can't remember which way round) so he hoped it could be sorted within a week but he wouldn't say more than that. I told him it'd make my 6 year olds day and hethen started telling him about how the building we were in used to be a nightclub and generally wittering on like a fan boy and he probably thought I was a bit odd. Still, lovely bloke, adorable little girl and I genuinely think he can do a job for us as a player too, on the pitch as well as off it.
  17. 3 points
    I am beyond underwhelmed. Patrick Roberts, Daniel Adshead, David Turnbull, Charlie Gilmour? These are all very boring names. Ditto Vincent Thill. What is the point of signing a Luxembourger if they don't have a suitably weird moniker? And ditto Josip Drmic. Totally commonplace and almost pronounceable by Swiss-Croatian standards. Pretty much the same with Marvin Bakalorz, although anything with a "z" in it has a touch of the exotic. I got briefly excited when it looked as if we might sign our first ever double-barrelled player, but it seems Alexis Claude-Maurice is off to Arsenal. The sooner the commercial department has a serious word with Webber about the need to boost shirt sales the better. All this emphasis on prioritisng players purely on their football ability is missing a vital point.
  18. 3 points
    Well, going off the interest from bigger clubs and a decent record in the SPL 3 million seems probably about right. All signings are a gamble, for every Pukki there is a Wolf, for every Mclean there is a Naismith. 3 million isn't a 10 or 12 million sized gamble and so far we have spent 300,000 and given out some larger contracts? I think the biggest thing, especially after the last two seasons which saw the arrival of Vrancic, Steiperman, Lietner, Buendia, Mclean, Pukki, Hernandez, Krul etc... I just trust them so much more to get it right. Not every time, but more times than not.
  19. 2 points
    Could have had a referendum. They are successful
  20. 2 points
    No wriggling, I wasn't caught out, I supplied the information to purple of all people. Now purple is a sharp cookie, he knew what I was saying Bill is divisive, as bad as any brexiteer, probably worse. He knows what he is doing implicating VW the way he does and I believe he already caught you with it. So why not confront a real liar
  21. 2 points
    To those who say the ground should only be expanded from 27,000 to 31,000 I would have to ask whether you would be getting as much bang from your buck as you ought to be? If you are going to spend £30m on a new stand, would an increase of only 4,000 be worth it? The Bowkett plan assumed an 8,000 increase for £30m which is obviously far better value. The club does not want to make same mistake a third time. The City Stand is too small and history has proven the new South Stand to also be too small. Secondly, if the club had 22,000 season ticket holders and 14,000 members last time in the EPL, surely you need a minimum capacity of 35,000 to ensure that most people get a chance to buy a ticket, especially for the big games. And of course this scenario does not even allow for those who would want to buy on General Sale. Norwich City Football Club is massively underestimating its potential support and I do subscribe to the view that a lot of people don't bother to buy tickets because they don't think they would get in, or not have much chance of getting a ticket in a preferred location. A bigger ground would open up the possibilities to these disenfranchised supporters. Thirdly, to the poster who said City have only ever had less than a dozen gates over 35,000 and fewer still in the league, I would point out that these were at a time when City were a lower league club and cup games were taken far more seriously than they are now. Moreover, as the club has risen up the leagues, the trend has been for the stadium capacity to go down, so we have never been able to truly test the actual size of the club - especially in the last 20 years or so. I recall Norwich got 28,001 against Ipswich in 1983, which was a capacity crowd, and to this day it has never been possible to beat that because the stadium capacity has hovered somewhere between 21,000 to 27,000. I believe it all started to go down in the 1970s when seats were put in the old South Stand. Before then it was still possible to get gates over 30,000, but of course attendances at football games were in decline generally at that time, which contrasts markedly with the last 20 years or so, where there has been an upsurge in popularity of the game, especially among women, who were put off by the hooliganism in the 70s and 80s.
  22. 2 points
    We can get more than that.
  23. 2 points
    A natural striker of a football. Not as common a skill as you might think. Translates to any level. Such players are very useful from a deep 10 position with a slightly lower block than we have seen in the Championship. A useful strategic weapon. Parma
  24. 2 points
    Anyone been watching the cycling? I got stuck behind these cyclists for 4 hours the other day...
  25. 2 points
    Only just noticed this thread. What's happened so far?