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  1. 34 points
    Sorry folks, I posted my report at 11pm last night but it got eaten by the 502 Gateway problem and is lost somewhere in the ether. Suffice to say it was a wonderful night of raw emotion. We have only ever clinched promotion in a home match once before. In 1960 I stood in the old Barclay stand with my dear old dad. Last night i was at the other end of the ground with my son. Neat bookends to a lifetime of supporting our beloved club. At the end I didn't want to leave the ground and watching the players on their lap of honour I couldn't help but think of what a wonderful roller coaster ride its been, so many ups and downs, despair and elation in fairly equal measure. What a time to have been alive and experienced it all, I am indeed blessed. What a night, what a team and what a very special club we support. On the ball City, never mind the danger. Hopefully more to come next year if I'm still in the land of the living
  2. 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.
  3. 18 points
    Plans have been unveiled for a new TV Channel focusing exclusively on the Tractor Boys. I've managed to get hold of a sneak preview of the opening day's schedule... 07:00 – Those Glory Glory Days – Tribute to the 62 Championship Team. Presented by a Professor of Ancient History from some university or other. 07:30 – 24 – Thriller – Will the Mighty Tractor Boys get this many points – Tune in to watch double agent Jack ‘Lambert’ Bauer try and thwart his ‘triffic set of lads’ winning again this season. 08:30 – Ipswichcrazy’s Youtube funnies – This week a tribute to Grant Holt. 09:00 – Bottom – an hour-long look at the league table 10:00 – Cash in the Attic – Four Town fans desperately try and find what Marcus has done with all the transfer fees. 11:00 – Blue Planet – David Attenborough uncovers natural history from deep within the Club Shop. 11:30 – Dad's Army – James Collins & Jon Walters discuss highly successful loan spells at Portman Road 12:00 – Danger Man – An in-depth profile of Town’s top striker – Will Keane – includes footage of all his league goals. 12.02 - Drop The Dead Donkey – fans discuss the debate about Ian Marshall’s final years at the club. 12:30 – Family Fortunes – those Binner fans old enough to remember, reminisce about the Cobbolds. (Subject to change if the participants aren’t up to it or meals on wheels arrives) 13:00 – Fawlty Towers – Comedy about an inept owner struggling to maintain his crumbling business. This week’s episode – “There’s a bloody bush growing out of the roof!” 13:30 – The Good Old Days – grainy footage of an away win 14:00 – I'm a Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here! – unprecedented access to Paul Lambert’s innermost thoughts 15:00 – The IT Crowd – historic footage of a full Portman Road (Black & white) 16:00 – The Inbetweeners – this season’s loan stars are asked about their time in Suffolk. This week’s episode – Meh! 16:30 – The Jewel in The Crown (Repeat) – profile of the next young starlet to roll off the ITFC production line and spearhead the charge up the division. This week : Jordan Rhodes 17:00 – Just The Two Of Us – Sitcom set in The Churchmans 17:30 – Last Man Standing – Sitcom sequel to Just The Two Of Us 18:00 - Keeping Up Appearances – Posters from TWTD hotly debate why they are still a huge club and everybody’s favourite second team. 18:30 – Love Thy Neighbour – balanced debate show recognising Norwich City’s renaissance for what it is. 18:31 – Pointless – An assessment and prediction of Town’s final 10 games this season 19:00 - Not Going Out – Drama about a young first-team Town player who can’t handle the thought of returning for the second half. 20:00 - Never Mind The Quality, Feel The Width – comedy about a boastful football club chairman with a large squad of players but can’t win any games. 20:30 – Rip Off Britain – This week Ipswich Season Tickets – why aren’t they giving them away? 21:00 – Remember Me? - Gameshow where famous footballers attempt to be picked out of a line-up. FA Cup Winner Roger Osborne features but no-one believes him. 21:30 – Shameless – A re-telling about how Town ripped off local businesses and charities following administration 22:00 – The News – Pathe Reel of May 1962 22:15 – Top Gear – A look at those fashions we still cherish from ‘78 22:30 – Who Do You Think You Are – Some Town fans start to question Paul Lambert’s pedigree. 23:00 – Walking with Beasts – Paul Mariner talks about his strike partnership with Eric Gates. 00:00 – The Wombles – The scouting team talk about their search for freebies and loans amongst the ‘things that the everyday folk leave behind’. 01:00 – FA Cup Final 1978 – Set the Betamax for another re-run of one of the greatest days in English history. Frank Bough sets the scene as the Blues thrash a powerful Arsenal team to lift the coveted trophy for the first time and give their ecstatic fans something to crow about again and again and again. David ‘One-Nil’ Coleman supplies the commentary. 03:00 – As 01:00 05:00 – As 01:00
  4. 14 points
  5. 14 points
    I was watching the Leeds Vs Derby match and the picture went off. I tapped the side of my TV and Bamford fell over.
  6. 13 points
    Borrowed from WOTB: Some more Leeds seethes Bolton equaliser! Norwich are the elf man utd , play till you win 3-2 in the 13 th minute of injury time Bolton 2-2 Norwich to win 6-2 **** norwich ****ing Norwich I don't f**king believe it. There it is Norwich 3-2. **** off. Norwich are officially bastards Norwich c**ts Norwich seem to have scored a last minute winner every single week for the past ten years. Will someone f**king take points off the farmer spaz c**ts And they always seem to be playing someone s**t every week too. Norwich are the jammiest bastards around. I honestly thought I'd only have to live through one spell of Norwich f**king City being a set of annoying c**ts, but it's come round again. I think I hate norwich more than any other team to be fair. Next three league fixtures: Rotherham (H) Havant & Waterlooville (H) Steps (H) I'd happily finish second to them to get out of this f**king league. We'll re-establish ourselves in the PL and they'll get relegated and we won't have to worry about them again. deflated like f**k after coming out of ER and seeing that Pukki winner **** off Norwich - 90+3 again the c**ts! not sure what will happen next week when Norwich turn up at the Reebok expecting to play them for the seventh consecutive week. Norwich actually make me hate my own life i hate them so much...
  7. 13 points
  8. 13 points
    Nothing can seemingly prepare opposing teams for when This current Norwich City team/squad are ‘in the mood’. The Bristol City defence had conceded either no goals or just one goal in every match they had played since meeting Norwich City at Ashton Gate back in mid December. With Pukki setting the tone, constantly breaking up enemy lines with pace and intelligence, the unerring onslaught from the ‘fleet of foot’ - Hernandez, Buendia, Aarons, Lewis, Cantwell ( players who can dribble, pass, shoot and assist ), ably led by a highly skilled Stiepermann (cleverly disguised in a 6’ 2” frame), the opposition are faced with a bewildering array of attacking talent. As if this initial wave isn’t hard enough to deal with, the second wave of Vrancic, Leitner, and now McLean, (and even Godfrey), add a heady mix of goals and assists. Has there ever been so much attacking threat throughout the team in the history of NCFC? This team is producing high-octane football. Totally unreliant on set-pieces (and thankfully, penalties), the current percentage of goals scored in ‘open-play’ is over 85% - a figure that would have Sam Allardyce reaching for the sick-bag. However it comes, promotion is the least this crop of players deserve. Supporters are often asked whether they prefer entertainment or success. Who would have thought you can have both.........
  9. 13 points
    https://www.alongcomenorwich.com/articles/the-lambert-diaries-part-4#
  10. 13 points
    There's some nonsense on here. While it's true that the relationship between Bowkett and Lambert had broken down to claim Bowkett didn't speak to him for three years is ridiculous. Lambert wasn't even here for three years. And in any case didn't Lambert phone him from Aston Villa's carpark? Also the link between the board and manager would have been McNally. We later had the our club suing Villa while Lambert sued our club. But this is all personal and business stuff. As far as football is concerned I will remember Lambert for what was probably our best ever three consecutive seasons. It was a magical time and can't be argued that it helped pave the way to what we have now. He has my respect and gratitude for that. However that is a historical respect and gratitude. As a returning manager I have no respect for him. He's shown us no respect whatsoever since returning and making a point of over celebrating goals and wins against at Carrow Road. These actions deserve no respect. Could anyone imagine James Madison returning with Leicester, scoring in a win and over celebrating in the faces of our fans? Absolutely not because even as a young man he had way more class. Lambert has none.
  11. 12 points
    Not forgotten by me. Two lads who came through our academy, performed well and made the club a sizeable chunk of money. I'll always be pretty thankful for them even if I don't think we should resign either of them.
  12. 12 points
    I think it shows what can be achieved when people form around the world, from different nationalities, races and religions, unite. Maybe I'm just a dreamer......
  13. 12 points
    Why the f*** would anyone want Sheff Utd to pick up any more points? Are people really that sad that they would rather see a competitor for the title pick up points at this stage, because of a little local rivalry?? I hope Ipswich pull off the impossible, beat them, hopefully by two goals so as to reduce their goal difference. I know it isn't going to happen, but that doesn't stop me from hoping for it.
  14. 12 points
  15. 12 points
    From nowhere to EFL young player of the year in 9 months surpassed all expectations. Fantastic for Max and our great club I wonder who's next
  16. 12 points
  17. 12 points
    I read in the press this week that we hadn't lost at home to Millwall in 50 years. That takes us way, way back to Lol Morgan's reign and off hand I had noreal recollection of the game so had to look it up. Yes, a 0-3 loss in front of 19k, with the likes of Kevin Keelan in goal and Curran and John Manning up front. I wonder how many can remember his song to the tune of "The Mighty Quinn". There was a debut for big money signing Ken Mallender, a centre half who never really made the expected mark. I also noticed that Tommy Bryceland was missing, he was our Talisman in those days so no wonder we lost. Anyway, enough of nostalgia, It was mild with broken cloud here in Norwich today as Farke resisted the urge to bring Rhodes back in which I thought was correct although I thought Vrancic was rather unlucky to only be on the bench. After a well observed two minute silence and a superb rendition of the last post we were off and running. From the start Millwall tried to keep on the front foot and it was not until the seventh minute that Pukki was just short of latching on to Leitner's chip through. Then Stiepermann's cross was a fraction too close to the keeper with Pukki lurking. It was far too open for my liking and with the visitors pushed forward it was difficult to play out from the back. We had flashes of quick passing skills as Buendia or Aarons regularly had the beating of their man down the right. In one nice move the ball was pulled back for Tetty to shoot low but a yard wide.Millwall were more direct, and from a soft free kick, given for a high boot that could not have been more than waist high, a head back across goal was nodded in by the towering figure of Tom Elliot. Oh dear, not going to script at all. City came back with a bit more gusto but were guilty to often of being over elaborate on the edge of the box. Tim Klose might have evened things up from a corner with a powerful ten yard header but it was straight at Amos, who palmed it over. Then from a free kick on the left, Klose flicked another header on to the bar and as Zimmerman rammed home the rebound our cheers were stifled by an offside flag. I couldn't be sure but I think it was against Klose for being a fraction in front when the kick was taken. It didn't look like being our day but there was generous applause at the interval as has become the norm and my son seemed confident that we could turn it round. For myself, I had seen this as a potential banana skin as long runs have to end some time. After 49 minutes it seemed as though my son's assessment would be proved correct when pressure down the left opened up the Lions defence. Hernandez onto Stiepermann, a strong run to the line and a cut back that Pukki, flashed past Amos, before he could move. That signaled a spell of City pressure and ten minutes later it really should have been 2-1. Hernandez's shot was handled in the box and this time when Pukki stepped up to take the penalty we thought surely this must be a goal. Unfortunately the ref may has well have given a goal kick as a penalty because the low shot was of a very similar quality to those of Rhodes and Vrancic in previous games. Amos just had to drop on it and I think even at my age I could have stopped that one. It knocked us back a bit and things got scrappy for a while before City finally started to exert more pressure down the right. Buendia flashed a shot a foot wide. then Stiepermann had a couple of efforts blocked. Eventually the ball fell to Leitner 20 yards out and when his low shot nestled in the far corner it felt like everything had finally come right. Our celebrations were a trifle premature as a long ball forward skidded off a defenders head straight into the path of Leonard who poked it under Krul's despairing dive. At this stage my son was coming round to my way of thinking when he remarked that perhaps some games you are destined not to win. This appeared to be more than prophetic when Krul telegraphed a throw out that was intercepted and within two quick passes Wallace had it in the back of the net for 2-3. Surely an expected three points had been chucked carelessly away. Rhodes now came on for Aaron and Vrancic for Stiepermann as Farke went for broke. It seemed a forlorn hope until two minutes from time Buendia found Rhodes open in the box. The big City striker found time to trap, turn and slot past Amos for what seemed like a life saving point. I would certainly have settled for that but with 6 mnutes added there still seemed to be time for an unlikely win. However despite pressure City were forced back and eventually gave away a corner as the last minute was running out. City quickly broke forward and when Buendia's ball into the box for pukki it looked like Amos might be favourite but the little Finn clipped it over the sprawling keeper towards the net. At this moment I had a flashback of Jackson's winner against Derby in that vital promotion game. "It's gonna go in, it's gonna go in", and yes by all that's holy in it went. I lost my woolly hat in the blur of noise, elation and emotion that then erupted, strangers embraced in the stands and on the stairs it was wonderful. Somehow the universe had re-aligned and all was right with the world. You don't get many games like that in a lifetime but when one comes along it's well worth the wait. I believe now that this team has enough within it to go all the way, in fact I'm sure that they will. Buendia my MOM. Wonderful little player
  18. 11 points
    Bought myself a fancy new 60" smart UHDTV today in anticipation of the Championship playoff final. Took it out of the box only to find there were no bloody Leeds.
  19. 11 points
    It was the best of times....yep, that's it pretty much I've not done many reports this season - life has got in the way and I've quite a few half-finished ones that I never had time to post. But a bank holiday weekend means I actually have time for a report today. So, an unchanged team was no surprise. Tom Trybull's injury has given us McClean and Vrancic in front of the familiar back 4 of Aarons, Godfrey, Zimm and Lewis, with Buendia and Hernandez roaming from the flanks, Stiepermann behind Pukki. Krul played every game in the end. A bright cold day in April and the clocks were striking 12.30 as the game kicked off - well, actually it was pretty overcast and kick off was a minute or two late... City were on the front foot from the off. I'd been delayed setting off (by our new cat - don't ask) so arrived just in time to see the kick off on the TV in the incredibly tiny bar area at Villa park, and watched the first couple of attacks which showed City meant business. Fortunately in a break in play I was able to find an empty seat and very soon afterwards McLean played an exquisite through ball for Hernandez who got to the byline and zipped it across the 6-yard box, no surprise Pukki was there first to flick it on into the net. Villa Park hasn't been a great place for us to visit over the years, and I"ve never seen us win here, but City were playing with the freedom you'd hope for after guaranteeing promotion last week so maybe that would change. City were now rampant and for the next few minutes threatened to overrun Villa. But on a foray downfield, probably their second attack of the game, Buendia put in a rash challenge out on the byline and Villa had a set piece which they put into the box and their striker was a yard quicker off the blocks than Zimm and flicked the header into the net. It was reminiscent of goals conceded against Preston and Millwall among others, and a reminder (not needed I'm sure) to messrs Farke and Webber that Defending Set Pieces needs to be high on the agenda for next season. City were still looking the better side, creating chances fluently, while Villa were relying on being more direct. Both sides created chances - one City attack was cleared as far as Hernandez who curled a stunning shot onto the bar. At the far end, Villa got the ball through to the by-line in the box, but Krul was there to put the ball behind. At one point Villa seemed to be trying to target high balls into our right back position, an interesting choice of tactic I have to say; after it failed to get them anything at all, they wisely seemed to give up on it. We had one long delay when McLean went down on the far side of the field and resumed play after lengthy treatment but it wasn't particularly surprising when he was replaced by Tettey shortly before half-time. So at half time with Sheffield United losing to Stoke it was looking very comfortable. Amusingly, Leeds were failing to beat L1pswich. Play resumed and I felt it was a more even game, both sides creating chances. At the City end we had one Villa cross which flashed across the 6-yard box with no one particularly close and one wild back pass from our left which beat Krul and fortunately was wide of the right hand post when Zimm slid in to clear it into touch. At the other end in front of us away fans, City were looking back in control as the half wore on, creating quite a few good chances which frustratingly wouldn't quite fall right for the finish, Hernandez much involved although all our front players were combining fluently, it's great to have Vrancic and Buendia back. Leitner was brought on for Stiepermann around 70 mins and City were looking very composed in possession. We heard that Sheffield had fallen behind and then equalised, so it was beginning to look like a draw would be enough, but as always that can change in an instant so it was looking like it would shape up for nervy last few minutes. But happily a super run by Jamal Lewis from the left and cutting inside let him square the ball to Vrancic who hit a perfectly placed shot from the edge of the box with his weaker right foot for 2-1 City. The players went as crazy as the away fans, the entire team coming over to celebrate in front of us including Krul running the entire length of the pitch. These guys care - I noticed Aarons was really annoyed with some steward who stopped him going right up to the away fans to celebrate with them. After the goal City still looked more likely to score and there were just 3 minutes added time. Farke made his trademark CB substitution in injury time, although it was Hanley brought on for Hernandez this time rather than Klose - a nice touch to give him the chance to be on the pitch at the end. My match clock was showing 93 minutes were exactly up when Villa won a corner and City just had time to clear it safely before the final whistle blew, cue wild celebrations, then we had to wait while the Villa players went around the pitch - no end to the season for them - and they put up the presentation stand for the trophy while the City players went back to the dressing room. It was great to see them come out and all get on the podium before the trophy was finally lifted. We've definitely been the best team in the division, but you have to prove it by results and we've more than done that, 94 points, 5 points clear of Sheffield Utd and 11 points clear of the imploding Leeds in 3rd which is a fair reflection over the season IMO. The players each took it in turns to raise the trophy in front of the fans - I'll try to post some pics when I have time. Lots of nice moments - Max Aarons filming the crowd singing "There's a starman playing on the right..." Emi Buendia draping the trophy in the Argentine flag - applause from a fair number of Villa fans who'd stayed for the presentation (credit to them), Zimm and Klose lifting the trophy together., inevitably Rhodes being asked to start a song ( you can guess which one he started), a nice good by to Ivo Pinto by the fans.. so many. It was great when Farke lifted the trophy (after all the players) and then Klose insisting that Delia and MWJ had their chance to lift it. So a perfect end to a perfect season, it had to end eventually !. For me, I had a feeling this team was something special after demolishing Sheff Wed 4-0 away, but the night I thought we'd win promotion was when we lost 3-1 at Preston. Why ? Because after going in at half-time 2-0 down (a set piece and a dodgy penalty) and going 3-0 down when they were able to score after a wonder shot from far out had hit the bar while we were pushing on to get one back, our team still wouldn't give up. And Max Aarons wanted it so much that he pushed over their keeper to try to get the ball back when Pukki finally scored at the very end. Despite winning 3-1, Preston's MOTM was their keeper Declan Rudd and he played a blinder. I thought then, if that's what it takes to beat us - (the last defeat we suffered this season as it turned out) - we're going to go up. And now we are. Next season can look after itself. This has been the most amazing season, and what a time to be a City fan !!
  20. 11 points
    It's like two eunuchs comparing the sizes of their stumps. Apples
  21. 11 points
    I understand the frustration sometimes with the Murphy's - but their best (especially Josh's) was very, very good - you can understand managers feeling that the potential is worth a gamble, particularly as both managers concerned had financial limitations. Norwich have done very, very well out of the Murphy twins - they gave us a memorable youth team campaign, some great goals and 20+ million - I get a bit annoyed sometimes at the negative comments.
  22. 11 points
    Dull and grey in Norwich today but no wind so ideal for football. It started tipping it down when i left for the match so I was rather damp on arrival. Someone asked me during the week if I was looking forward to the Derby and seemed surprised when I said no. Thats the problem with being brought up at a time of Ipswich superiority that despite a decade of dominance still rankles deep down. The flag waving and pre match razzmatazz raised my spirits a bit but I was still nervous as a kitten as the visitors kicked off towards the Barclay. There was a bit of head tennis in our left back position but we soon came away down the right with Aarons who had made 50 yards before crossing low to Hernadez who had his shot blocked away to Vrancic who bravely nodded it back for the Cuban winger to hammer home with his second bite at the cherry. A great start and for a while it was all one way traffic with Vrancic having another couple of efforts. Ipswich gradually grew into the game as we began to loose our usual assured passing touch. It got a bit physical and Mr Banks tended very much on the side of leniency as Buendia and Vrancic were both singled out for treatment. Town were certainly giving it a good go although there was little to trouble Krul in truth. Judge thumped one into the side netting and a couple of corners were scrambled clear but they didnt look particularly dangerous. It got a bit scrappy as we approached the half and both Sears and Vrancic had to be subbed due to knocks. As Tetty came on just before the break, Aarons was scythed down and there was a right old ruck on the sidelines. Lambert got himself involved and although it was only handbags and the best of three rounds it was no surprise when he got a red card. I couldnt help a wry smile. The image of him being ushered gesticulating furiously down the tunnel will live long in the memory. There were at least three minutes of added time left but Mr Banks probably did the right thing by whistling a bit early. When things had cooled down a shade I stood looking down at the pitch and suddenly remembered a Derby game from over 60 years ago. In my minds eye I could see Peter Gordon scoring down there in the River End. I stood under the old Pinkun scoreboard that afternoon with a crowd of over 30k. We won 3 2, a rare event in those days. The half time fracas must have had some effect because it was all Town for the opening quarter. Judge was only a yard wide with a low shot and we had to withstand a fair old ariel bombardment as a few corners and free kicks came in. They probably only have their pride to play for now but I give them credit for having a go. It was certainly a full blooded contest and I remained on edge until Pukki finally settled my nerves by latching onto Buendias defence splitting pass before rifling a low short across Bialkowski to put clear daylight between the teams. There was a bit more huffing and puffing from Town but i never really felt that they made anything amounting to a clear cut chance. Pukki might have wrapped it up on 75 minutes but the flag was up as he turned Zimmermans flick on into the net but we didnt have to wasit long for the coup de grace. With ten minutes left it was Buendia again causing panic with a run forward and a pass that Pukki tucked under the advancing keeper to round off the victory. Rhodes came on for the dying moments as a sea of yellow and green sang danced and sang their way to the top of the league and put a further nail in Towns coffin. There was another round of handbags at five paces just before the end as Buendia was dumped but Mr Banks again resisted the red card and probably it was the right thing to do. So thats ten full years of dominance and its something that will go a long way to soothe the pain so often felt in my youthful supporting days. Some may miss the Old Farm Derby but I am more than happy to give it a miss as long as we stay well above them for years to come. MOM? Trybull, Zimmerman, Godfrey, take your pick. Sorry for the delay, hardware failure
  23. 11 points
    If my Auntie had boll*cks she'd be my Uncle (or not, in this brave new world). You can do that all day; if the atmospheric pressure was slightly different Buendia might have caught his first half shot cleanly and scored, if the grass was slightly longer Aarons would have found it easier to control his miss, if the ref had viewed it how many others did Leeds would not have been given the corner they scored from. There was nothing fortunate about the scoreline.
  24. 10 points
    There is a series of books called "The Inner Game of - - - - -" which got me thinking about the football under Farke. The first book in the series is called "The Inner Game of Tennis" and there are others about skiing, music etc etc. The principle is to do the activity in question in a state of awareness, living in the moment and in a state of relaxed concentration, without trying too hard. Now it sounds wrong at first - surely the main thing is to try hard.....but then surely every footballer worth his salt is going to try hard as a matter of course so "trying hard" is not the main thing that leads to success. What has marked our football out this last season has been the relaxed nature of it - it didn't matter if we got one goal down or two goals down....or even three! We still were able to keep that relaxed concentration and nearly always find a way back into the game. Even the matches we lost could so easily have been different, even the 0-3 against Leeds. The "Inner Game" is something that individuals can pursue - we can all find that when we do an activity we enjoy and get so immersed in it that we almost stop thinking - sportsmen call it being "in the zone" - it is a state of mind. So the goal of a coach is to get all his players "in the zone" at the same time, all the time - something that is very difficult when you have so many personalities and egos. Farke achieves it though - but he goes further with it - he not only includes players, but includes everyone - fans too. It is almost as if 30 odd thousand people are all totally together and in the zone. Klopp does it too - and Guardiola. Brian Clough did it at Forest all those years ago - the secret is getting everyone working in a state of togetherness. Now all teams experience that feeling from time to time, but the really successful ones have it all the time. That is what we have had this season. The players are so focused in what they are doing, they don't get anxious, they don't let the pressure get to them, they don't fret too much when they go behind, they simply focus on each other, stick to the principles of teamwork that they have been instilled with and believe in - and as we have seen, the results have been way above expectation. This is why Farke - and the Dortmund way - works. Paul Lambert imitated it when he was at Norwich, he brought that focused togetherness he learned at Dortmund and it worked for him with us. That he has failed to create it elsewhere is because the bigger clubs he went to had too many egos in and he wasn't able to breakdown those egos. Alex Neil was brilliant to start with as he got everyone working together, but longer term he couldn't control the egos. He even sent Maddison away because he couldn't handle his precocious ego. But look what Farke did with Maddison - he showed trust in him and allowed him to be at his best. Same with the other youngsters who have come through. But Farke goes further - he trusts all his players totally - unless they don't want to or are unable to fit in with the required attitude - the attitude I started talking about at the start of this thread - that attitude of being able to be totally focused on the collective, rather than themselves. Oliveira was the prime example - an individualist in a team of people trying to act as a whole. A likeable guy, a talented player, but just not able to adapt to the mentality required. OK, if you've followed me so far, the "Inner Game" is absolutely integral in the way we play football - relaxed concentration - allowing the mind to be free of non helpful thoughts and being in the zone for 90 minutes or more minutes of a match. It doesn't always work, we all make mistakes, but the underlying principle is there. It works for Klopp and Guadiola - they of course have vast resources to be able to buy the best kind of players that fit their ethic - and what makes our success so remarkable is that it has been done on a relatively small budget. I firmly believe we can do fantastically well as we progress under Farke, that the principles he instills in everyone will see us go a long way to negate the mindsets that exist in the PL - the fear of failure, the tension of so many clubs seem under - the principles he instills transcend all that negativity and I thoroughly recommend the book The Inner Game of Tennis and any of the others in the series - it teaches a way of learning about how to be better at sports that is fascinating in terms of freeing the mind to enable best performance - it applies to individuals, but it is totally clear to me that when you apply those principles across a collective of people as in at a football club - you get something really special. Dortmund is a beacon of this kind of thinking - Farke is applying those principles in much the same way as Klopp is at Liverpool and Wagner did at Huddersfield, although that club didn't follow it through which is why they started to struggle and why Webber left. We won't make that same mistake. The football may be slightly different under these different coaches, but the underlying principles are the same. Football psychology is fascinating - we have witnessed something really special this season and there is no reason why that can not continue next season. The psychology behind our success is to do with the 'inner game' - it stops overthinking in its tracks and enables the sub-conscious mind to take the lead, which in turn allows best performance. Thanks for reading.
  25. 10 points
    I think I've found the original draft...
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