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My City v Boro report

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I blog about Norwich after every home game and the away games that I watch, I also collect City stuff and blog about other sports. Check it out at www.nick-sportsjunkie.blogspot.com. Here is the posting for the Middlesbrough game:

Well that was a hard earned three points if ever there was one! While I applaud Norwich City’s 1-0 win over Middlesbrough this afternoon, I’ve got to say that it worries me that a team as poor as today’s visitors were effectively still in the game until the last minute.
On Tuesday City took the lead against Crystal Palace a couple of minutes before half-time and then wilted after the break. Today, City finally took one of several chances to open the scoring in the 44th minute – and then did exactly the same thing – they wilted.
After handing Crystal Palace their first away goals and first three points on the road this season on Tuesday, a better side than Middlesbrough would have sniffed out at least a point at Carrow Road today.
Thankfully though, Middlesbrough where really, really poor and no ambition about them at all – yet the fact is, City switched off after the break yet again.
Twitter king Stephen Fry was introduced to the crowd before the game and he along with every City fan would have been surprised to see the big changes in midfield.
Paul Lambert mixed up the men across the middle, resting Wes Hoolahan and Korey Smith from the midfield and giving starts to David Fox and Anthony McNamee.
Elliot Ward was thankfully back in the centre of defence and both he and Leon Barnett easily had the measure of Leroy Lita and Kris Boyd.
Boyd, in particular, was very disappointing – and to think I wrote in my betting column at the start of the season that he was the man likely to lead Boro back up to the Premier League.
That looks like being a million miles away now and under the temporary stewardship of Steve Agnew, Boro have plenty of immediate problems to address.
For City though, our spine is really solid with Ward and Barnett a couple of rocks, John Ruddy doing little wrong between the sticks and Grant Holt his usual battering ram.
Simeon Jackson’s pace was really noticeable today and against powerful centre halves like David Wheater who lack a bit of pace, he really does shine.
In midfield, though, City are a mixed bag. McNamee was given the man of the match award and caused plenty of blood-twisting in those Boro defenders’ legs, but Fox is certainly nowhere near as combative as Korey Smith.
Simon Lappin continues to look solid on the left and I don’t know how Glenn Roeder or Bryan Gunn ever overlooked him, but Andrew Crofts often looks like he’s working all on his own in midfield.
I really rate Crofts – the best player in a City shirt by miles this season, I don’t know what we’d do without him. When I think of the volatile indiscipline of Darel Russell, the limited talent of Mark Fotheringham or the ineffectiveness of Matty Pattison, all of whom have graced the Carrow Road midfield in the last three years, Crofts is in a different world and I for one am so thankful he’s there in midfield pulling the strings
Crofts is the best City midfielder since Sammy Clingan and that’s saying something. I rated Sammy for the way he took City games by the scruff of the neck and I rate Crofts for the same reason.
He should have opened the scoring a few minutes before Jackson’s goal, but hit the inside of the post. I saw the replay of Jackson’s goal at half-time and I’m still convinced he was offside.
All in all though, today was a much needed win after the collapse against Palace. We’ve won four and lost three at home, kept three clean sheet in the last four games against three teams who were pre-season favourites for the title, yet still I’m convinced we’re punching above our weight.
October ends with a tough trip to Cardiff and November just looks gruesome however you look at it. City could get 15 points from games against Burnley, Millwall, Reading, Leeds and Ipswich.
Or they could get 0.
I guess that what makes following this team so unpredictable.

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I thought I''d reply as no-one else has and it must have taken you ages to type that out ,so well done.

Think with Huck''s match report and Ricardo''s great match report we''re all ''''match reported'''' out by the time we''ve read those two [:)]

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