It's a fan thing

Following the defeat by Bristol City people who told me that it's far too early in the season to judge City's form and we would be strolling down Wembley Way come May have now written off our chances of even avoiding relegation!

Following the defeat by Bristol City people who told me that it's far too early in the season to judge City's form and we would be strolling down Wembley Way come May have now written off our chances of even avoiding relegation!

No doubt, once the new manager has bedded in, followed by a couple of decent results the open top bus will be re-booked. However daft this joy and despair notation may seem it's the mindset of the football supporter.

This has nothing to do with our nationality or the club we support. Whether it's Norwich, Newcastle or Reading, it's a football thing and it sets us apart from followers of any other sport. If you need an example look no further than last Saturday's proceedings at the Stade de France.

To my mind the events in Paris should put to bed any argument that a video referee would be good for the game of football - “It's a try to England! No, wait a moment (or five minutes) while the fourth official replays the action 99 times, it isn't a try….sorry about that.”


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OK they got the final decision right (maybe) but at first sight it was a match winning score, and it cost England the World Cup (maybe). Let's be thankful we didn't have the video referee in 1966, unless of course he was Russian.

Over in Russia last week Steve McClaren branded the referee a disgrace for his match-changing decision when, to the naked eye, most of us thought it was probably a penalty as Rooney barged into the forward a couple of centimetres outside the area.

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The dire refereeing decisions in Paris were handled with quiet acceptance if not universal agreement.

Infamous referee Urs Meier was widely blamed for Englands failure in Euro 2004 and subsequently forced out of the game by the Neanderthal element, even though it was the correct decision to rule out Sol Campbell's “goal”.

Will the Australian video referee in Paris also be hounded out of the game? Unlikely, and how about 50,000 Englishmen watching their team lose in Paris with hardly a spot of trouble anywhere yet a handful of fans in Russia make the headlines again for all the wrong reasons. I know these are old chestnuts but as I mentioned earlier, it's a fan thing.

There is one other point to make on the difference between football and other sports. Imagine we had just lost to the Italians in the final at FIFA 2010 (ironically in South Africa) I doubt the television coverage would have been wrapped up 20 minutes after the final whistle to make way for those talented X Factor contestants so Sharon Osborne can enlighten us as to whether they can sing in tune.

On the other hand, perhaps that's an idea to speed up the search for the new Norwich City manager.

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