Iwan Roberts: Manner of Farke's exit was a poor show from City

Norwich Head Coach Daniel Farke with the trophy at the end of the Sky Bet Championship match at Vill

Daniel Farke with the Championship trophy at Villa Park in 2019 - Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd 

I was driving up the M23 back to Norwich last Saturday night after Swansea's game at Bournemouth when the news broke on BBC Five Live that Daniel Farke had been sacked by Norwich City. 

To say I was disappointed and angry would be an understatement!

I gave my reason in last week's column as to why I thought Daniel deserved more time as the club's head coach and I fully stand by what I wrote.

I had a lot of responses and good, honest debate after my column last week, lots of people agreeing with me, lots of Norwich fans disagreeing with me wanting him sacked. Well, they didn’t have long to wait.

Daniel is a good man and has been a top-class head coach for the football club. I haven’t been up to Conley that often since I left in 2004 but the welcome he gave me when I was invited back, to present Adam Idah with his debut shirt, was so friendly and genuine - something that hadn’t really happened before when I’d gone back there. 

I really took to him and couldn’t help but like the man and wanted him to succeed so badly.

The club was in turmoil on and off the pitch when Stuart Webber appointed him and he had a massive job ahead. After a difficult first season, finishing 14th below Ipswich, he really got to grips with the Championship and won the title by five points - nearly scoring 100 goals and playing some scintillating football.

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Daniel’s found it a hard transition from the Championship to the Premier League but as I stated last week, in my opinion, there are reasons for that and the reason for the club's struggles shouldn’t be left solely at his door. Thats too easy!

Football is a cruel and ruthless business at times, none more so than last Saturday when Daniel was relieved of his duties. I’m not stupid and any manager or head coach who's in as disappointing a run of results as Daniel was knows he’s massively under pressure and needs to turn things around as soon as possible.

I think the timing of his sacking was shocking, granted there’s never a good time but to do it the same night after the man’s won his first Premier League game in 20 left me shaking my head.

The joy and relief on Daniel’s face after the game as he celebrated with his players and the Norwich fans was there for us all to see. He had no idea what was about to happen and that saddens me so much.

If the club didn’t think Daniel was the right man to turn things around, if they were thinking they need to give a new head coach enough time to come in and keep the club in the league, then make the decision after the humiliating 7-0 defeat at Chelsea. That could well have been seen as a sackable offence, especially when the club was on the run it was, not after a 2-1 away win at Brentford.

Iwan Roberts presents Adam Idah with a permanent reminder of his Norwich City debut Picture: Norwich

Iwan Roberts presents Adam Idah with a permanent reminder of his Norwich City debut - Credit: Norwich City FC

I think it was a poor show by the club to treat a man who’s done so much for Norwich City. If the decision had been made before the game - and I’ve no doubt that it was - could they not delay it 24 hours and announce their decision on Sunday? Could they not let Daniel enjoy the team's victory on Saturday night?

Okay, the decision wasn’t going to change after the Brentford result but at least let the man enjoy the moment. I think he more than deserved that after what’s he’s done at the football club.

I’d like to wish Daniel good luck in the future and all the success in the world in his next appointment, wherever that may be. One thing is for sure, September 14 of 2019 and that amazing win over Manchester City will live in our memories for a very, very long time.

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