Ex-City winger still a huge fan despite bittersweet spell
- Credit: Archant
Tears but no tantrums sum up Luke Chadwick’s injury-hit Norwich City career that still allowed him to fulfil a boyhood dream at Carrow Road.
Chadwick scored 26 minutes into his Canaries’ debut against arch-rivals Ipswich Town at Portman Road but was ruled out for months when he suffered a serious knee injury in the closing stages of the same game.
That set the tone for a frustrating two-year stint marked by further injuries and a turbulent spell which saw Peter Grant depart and Glenn Roeder arrive.
But the former Manchester United starlet retains a lot of affection for the place and the people he shared a dressing room with in Norfolk.
“I can’t speak highly enough of what a magnificent football club Norwich is,” he said, now working as a football coach in his native Cambridgeshire. “The way they treated me despite all the injuries. They still signed me after I got injured on my debut at the start of a loan spell. They had agreed to but they didn’t have to. I’ve got no regrets whatsoever, but I was disappointed not to get going at Norwich.
“The changing room was brilliant. I loved it. It was a massive thing for me to play with one of my heroes growing up in Dion Dublin. That was a dream come true. Darren (Huckerby), what an incredible player but more importantly what a fantastic group of people. A lovely football club.
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“I never got too down about being injured because no matter how long you were out I was still around that environment of the dressing room where you had some top-notch players and fantastic characters.”
Chadwick can vividly recall the freak injury on his derby debut and the painful aftermath.
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“I remember colliding with some sort of pitchside microphone that was probably there for Sky. The first thought was that horrible feeling of being winded. And then as I sort of caught my breath I felt real agony and pain from the shoulder, which was prone to dislocation.
“I pulled that back in and then I remember distinctly Adam Drury saying to me don’t look down and of course your first thought then is to look and all I could see was a gaping hole in my knee, where you could see the bone through the cut. Then I felt the pain in my knee and realised I was in a bit of trouble.
“I remember sitting in the treatment room at Ipswich and just crying. The doctor had come in to try and stitch it up but because the cut was so wide I was struggling. I was so emotional. All that emotion from the game starting so well and then fearing how long am I going to be out.”
• Watch out for the second part of our chat, including a full and frank podcast, when Luke discusses why he wanted a Norwich move, how Tony Pulis rebuffed Nigel Worthington’s attempts to sign him and why he had to reject Glenn Roeder’s offer.