Those dreadful nerves are back

PUBLISHED: 14:15 10 March 2007 | UPDATED: 10:09 14 September 2010

Never mind the Oscar speeches of the other week, I would like to thank the City coach driver who has managed (at last!) to perfect the incredibly difficult task of driving the lads to the closer away fixtures in such a roundabout way that they think they are still here in Norfolk.

Never mind the Oscar speeches of the other week, I would like to thank the City coach driver who has managed (at last!) to perfect the incredibly difficult task of driving the lads to the closer away fixtures in such a roundabout way that they think they are still here in Norfolk.

They have been playing on the road like they used to when 'the fortress' was a worthy name for our beloved home turf. The pilot has obviously deliberately only been showing them landmarks akin to those back home, so they think they have done one of those 'afraid of flying' short courses from Norwich International and are home in time for tea.

The team psychologist must have got inside a few heads and convinced the team that playing on a pitch with a different name can sometimes have certain advantages, while the kit manager has de-sensitised the lads to the effects of colour so that when a change from the home strip is required it isn't an issue to rival the 'whose turn is it to shuffle the cards?' debate on the way home.

Two consecutive away wins within five days, six points from six, five goals for and three against… this almost begins to sound a bit like the City of our Division One title season.

Memories of classics in enemy territory have come flooding back in recent days, together with those dreadful nerves in my stomach, although, in fairness, back then it was because of the enormity of what we were on the brink of achieving and could so easily have blown.

Now it is because of… well… the enormity of what we were about to lose should things go horribly wrong. Ask any Leeds fan right now what that's like if you haven't felt it.

Well, a quiet Friday night in meant that I had the chance to watch table-topping Derby County in their home match up against relative high flyers Colchester United, with the hosts coming out comfortable 5-1 winners. Almost without exception the Derby success came down their left flank against, I have to say, a pretty non-existent right back for the visitors.

From over 75 miles away come Tuesday evening's encounter in the fair city I suppose it came as no surprise then that the Rams managed to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat as we conspired to let in a couple of goals that could and should have been kept out once we had taken the lead. (Just how good is young Chris Martin then? Only time will really tell but to date I would give him a 'should go far, but please don't leave yet!' rating).

And how is it that we manage so frequently to blinker certain officials to blatant sendings off? Lauren for Arsenal on Hucks three seasons ago springs to mind, and James Chambers for West Brom just the season before when the two then at the top of Division One grappled for bragging rights.

I am sure you can think of many more but on things such as this are seasons decided, and so it looks, on that basis, as if Derby will take their place once again amongst the elite.

Good luck to them - she says gritting her teeth! I just hope poor Marc Edworthy doesn't find himself on the scrapheap in the same way that Malky Mackay did when we were promoted. Sometimes success can simply lead to personal downfall, and often to the nicest of people.

A word of warning again to anyone who likes to brag a bit after a few decent results, a good patch of form or from the standpoint of a lofty table position - just prior to the game away to Derby Colchester issued a statement about considering a possible ground-share with our 'friends' down the A140 should they make it to the Premiership. I would imagine the 5-1 reverse left some within the club thinking more about whether to refurbish the Layer Road public conveniences.

And finally, to the person who suggested a couple of seasons ago that we might amalgamate with 'the blue enemy', I award a bouquet of barbed wire, or at least a right old wallop over the head with my Oscar statue.

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