In Lambert we trust
Kathy Blake, NCISA The last time I wrote the NCISA PinkUn column, I was extolling the virtues of life in the lower leagues. I said that every cloud had a silver lining and there was much to admire about a lot of the smaller clubs and competing at this level.
Kathy Blake, NCISA
The last time I wrote the NCISA PinkUn column, I was extolling the virtues of life in the lower leagues. I said that every cloud had a silver lining and there was much to admire about a lot of the smaller clubs and competing at this level.
Well this came back to bite me on the nose on Saturday. As well as those 'nice things' there are also 'nasty things' too. Like smaller clubs not having undersoil heating.
I was one of the hardy souls who got up at the crack of dawn and traipsed off to Walsall last weekend. There had been no murmurings on the way up that the game was in any doubt. Yes it was brass monkeys outside, but surely we would have heard by now?
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And as we all sat in the nice warm Saddlers Bar at 2.15pm enjoying the commendable hospitality of Walsall, and the cheap beer, it never entered anyone's head the game would be called off.
In fact when the first rumblings were heard, we thought it was a wind up.
- 1 Soto's loan at Telstar ends as City close on work permit for USA striker
- 2 'Best team in the division' - Bristol boss hails City's stylish success
- 3 Norwich City transfer rumours: Buendia 'talks' over summer Arsenal move
- 4 LOAN WATCH: Success for Heise and recognition for Adshead
- 5 Iwan Roberts: Hugill showed he truly belongs at Norwich City
- 6 Dowell hoping to make more happy FA Cup memories with Canaries
- 7 Paddy Davitt: Player ratings after Canaries' 2-0 Bristol City win
- 8 'We are looking to win the next game' - Barnsley boss on Norwich FA Cup visit
- 9 Patience a virtue for City striker after injury had threatened his Premier League pursuit
- 10 Watch extended highlights of the Canaries' 2-0 win over Bristol City
Then the ghastly truth slowly materialised and we realised we had had a wasted journey. Personally I have been quite lucky following Norwich away. In just over 45 years this was just the fourth time a game had been called off after I had set off, so I can't really grumble too much.
The Saddler's Club were very good. They kept the bar open an extra hour which they didn't have to.
The mood among the travelling faithful was one of resigned disappointment. I can think of a couple of club's fans who might not have taken it on the chin like we did, but that is not the Norwich way.
The main annoyance was that the decision, although probably the correct one, hadn't been taken considerably earlier. If the pitch was playable at 10 o'clock then how come it suddenly wasn't at 2 o'clock? It was bitterly cold and obvious to all that not much was going to alter weather-wise.
Walsall must have had an awful lot of faith in those braziers, that's all I can say.
Rumours soon started to circulate that Paul Lambert had been instrumental in getting it called off. I was surprised at the time because at the end of the day it's the referee's decision, and they must be quite used to being pressurised by pushy managers.
But I have to say if indeed the City boss was behind it, then I have no quibbles. After all, he hasn't got much wrong so far has he? And imagine if Grant Holt had torn his cruciate ligaments during the game as a result of a frozen pitch. We wouldn't have been happy. I for one would be prepared to make the sacrifice of a wasted trip if it means our best players stay fit.
Finally I would like to wish all NCISA members and Norwich City fans everywhere a very happy and prosperous new year. It looks like at last we are in for better times ahead.
Being a City fan has always been a double edged sword. After having endured so many seasons of misery and failure, we now find ourselves in the recently unfamiliar situation, where because we are doing well, other clubs are going to be sniffing round in the January transfer window after our best players. Not only that, but every time a manager is sacked somewhere, both north and south of the border, Paul Lambert is inevitably linked with the job.
There's nothing new about this of course. It happened regularly throughout the 70s, 80s and early 90s and comes with the territory I suppose.
But I'd take it ahead of what we have been served up over the last few seasons.
So if Paul Lambert thinks a pitch is unplayable, then I for one do too. In Lambert we trust.