Chumpionship deserved a double-take for Norwich City

The Man is happy to point out when he’s right – Christmas wasn’t much of a problem to the lads at all.

Obviously it helped we never made it to Palace for our regular Boxing Day defeat at Hellhurst Park. Them’s the breaks, although not getting the chance to take three points off us probably cost hurly Burley his job.

That said, The Man doubts his sacking will do us any favours when we do head to the smoke on a freezing midweek night to fully enjoy the bright lights of Hellhurst.

So QPR were distinctly underwhelming, Sheffield United looked screwed, Boro’ were dull.

And us? We were excellent, couldn’t have given any more and, by the end of it, knackered. That is going to be a problem if the players keep dropping like flies. Or getting themselves suspended. Either works.

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• The Chumpionship table needed a double-take after Monday’s draw at Boro’.

The Man was almost numb to it. Obviously it was a sight to behold: us second, almost a year after we trudged to Wycombe in the doldrums.

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And artificial. Cardiff saw to that 24 hours later.

Then there’s Swansea, who were third. They’ve already lost nine games. Hardly invincible.

We’re good enough to challenge where we are. It should be the minimum acceptable level for our club. But it feels different to scrapping around for years against the same sides and finally getting a proper shot at it. And it doesn’t matter how you got there, you go for it. The Man expects the lads, Lambo and the board to do just that – otherwise there’ll be questions to answer.

• The Man doesn’t doubt for one minute Aaron Wilbraham is part of some grand Lambo plan. But you’d assume it may take a while to show.

Given Croftsy was playing non-league football with Wrexham a few years back, and last season Oli couldn’t get into Stockport’s side, Lambo deserves a bit of trust. We’ve been about the sum of our parts for a while. So AW will be fine then.

• Last season we had to welcome Sunderland in the League Cup as a doldrums club, and it stuck in the throat as a reminder of our decline.

So on Saturday, a non-descript FA Cup third round draw with Leyton Orient, right out of the doldrums, should work the other way and prove just how far we’ve come. Not by thrashing them or anything like that. We don’t do cups and The Man expects even Lambo is powerless to sort that. Just the occasion.

After all, when we beat them 4-0 last season Lambo discovered a diamond. We probably owe them something for that. Let’s make it a consolation goal – The Man’s feeling generous.

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