Kitman helps save the day

City's 1959 replica strip almost had to be abandoned for the FA Cup trip to Charlton - until a Scottish firm came to the rescue for kit manager Manny Fowler.

City's 1959 replica strip almost had to be abandoned for the FA Cup trip to Charlton - until a Scottish firm came to the rescue for kit manager Manny Fowler.

The Canaries thought their number was up when their plan to wear the same kit as the giant-killing team of 50 years ago hit a late snag.

As Saturday's trip to The Valley approached, Fowler was dealt a blow by the company who were supposed to be printing the old-style numbers on the players' shirts. He feared the idea would have to be shelved and City would have to play in their regular kit.

But he put in a desperate call to a company he used at his former club, Kilmarnock - and they played a blinder.


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He said: “We were let down by a company who were going to print the numbers for the kits. They wouldn't have looked right with modern numbers and you can't play without numbers on the kit, so we would have had to forget the idea.

“It was a nightmare because we were so close to the FA Cup game. Then I remembered how the guys at Rainbow Ink had done jobs in the past and had even done some work for Norwich earlier this season.

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“They were just brilliant. They got exactly what we were looking for and sent them down to me where I was able to put the numbers on the kit in time for the game.”

And, after the 1-1 draw at Charlton, City have confirmed they will wear the replica strip again in next Tuesday's replay.

Stewart Sinclair, owner of Rainbow Ink, said: “We used to do work for Manny when he was at Killie and he's a really nice guy.

“There are some people you will bend over backwards to help and he's one of them. We didn't have much time to get the job done but we like to aim for a quick turnover in our jobs and we managed it without too much trouble.

“Manny explained what he was looking for and we made up seven or eight different versions and he picked the one that matched best. We were happy to help. It's quite a feather in our cap to be doing work for an English Championship club.”

Fowler will be in the dug-out for City's trip to Sheffield United on Saturday, although he will have one eye on Kilmarnock's Scottish Cup fourth round derby match at Ayr United.

The diehard Killie fan said: “I'd have loved to have been there. I'm sure Jim Jefferies and the boys will get through to the next round of the Cup at Ayr's expense.”

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