How time flies
Kathy Blake, NCISA The summer seems to have gone really quickly. It doesn't seem five minutes since that dreadful day at Charlton in May. I don't think I have ever felt at such a low ebb in my days as a Norwich City Supporter and I know many fans felt the same.
Kathy Blake, NCISA
The summer seems to have gone really quickly. It doesn't seem five minutes since that dreadful day at Charlton in May. I don't think I have ever felt at such a low ebb in my days as a Norwich City Supporter and I know many fans felt the same.
Shortly after the end of the season NCISA held a public meeting in St Andrews Hall to get the views of fans about the state of the football club and the performance of those in charge. The general consensus was intense dissatisfaction and a demand for change. Round about that time the former chairman and chief executive both stood down, and since then we have seen several changes in the boardroom.
Time is a great healer of course, and I think if we held the same meeting now, feelings probably wouldn't be running so high. The traditional pre-season excitement and optimism has kicked in, and this together with a raft of new signings has lifted the mood. Last season's loan signings and some of our so-called better players, Sammy Clingan and Lee Croft for example, have left. Personally I won't shed any tears over players who feel they are too good for a division that they have to admit some responsibility for us finding ourselves in.
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Tuesday night I was lucky enough to be invited to attend a meeting of supporters groups with the new board. I thought the meeting was worthwhile and approached in the right spirit. I was nevertheless a bit surprised to see that the board had hired a professional compeer to conduct the meeting. I couldn't rid myself of the impression when I left that I had been to a game show. I expect it was decided to do it this way Roger Munby is no longer there.
The present incumbents (although almost certainly possessing other attributes), do not have the same charisma and oratory skills as the former chairman. Although Roger was sometimes accused of using jargon and rhetoric, he had a silver tongue and was certainly very good at chairing meetings, and often diffused difficult situations with charm and a twinkle of the eye. I am pleased to hear he is on the road to recovery following his illness.
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It was certainly good to meet other supporters' representatives and put names to faces. In all the years I have been associated with NCISA, I have never been in the same room as other groups at an official meeting. This has to be a good thing and may stop some of the misunderstandings that have occurred in the past. We are all City fans together after all, and love the club dearly.
I sat at the same table as Delia for a hot buffet after the meeting. She said that she was pleasantly surprised by the lack of negativity shown. I agree, but in the same way a different mood would probably have pervaded at our meeting if held now, this meeting, if held at the end of last season, would probably have shown a very different face. It's all about timing.
However, now we must all look forward. Football is a results driven business. If City get off to a good start and win lots of games the disquiet of the early summer will disappear. On the other hand though, if we get to the end of September and only have 9 or 10 points on the board, the old doubts will resurface.
For now though NCISA wish the new board and Bryan Gunn and his team all the very best for the season. Bring it on.
t NCISA have decided against running the popular Canary Challenge for this season. The overriding reason for this is the sad demise of the hard copy Pink 'Un. We always receive a lot of entries via this route and also the results were published in it on a weekly basis.
There are other reasons too. For the second year running we were unable to find a sponsor for the competition and we were having trouble making it viable. There was also a certain amount of perceived apathy towards things NCFC in general following relegation.
Several people have also said to me they have had trouble keeping up with which clubs are in our division this season. I have to admit I have struggled a bit myself in this respect. A couple of weeks ago I went up to watch Norfolk compete in the Minor Counties knockout final against Staffordshire at the Riverside Stadium in Durham. Talking to some Staffs supporters, the subject switched to football and it transpired they were Port Vale fans. Someone asked if we would be playing each other this season and I had to admit I wasn't sure without looking. Let's hope we wont have this worry next season!