Those ever-changing moods...

Norwich Head Coach Dean Smith during the Carabao Cup First Round match against Birmingham

Norwich City head coach Dean Smith during the Carabao Cup win over Birmingham - Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

Football fans are a perverse breed. Last season we were all getting annoyed when fans of the bigger clubs talked about how their teams should be beating teams like Norwich, yet last weekend social media was full of comments about how City should be beating sides like Wigan.

However, as we should know by now, the Championship is the most annoyingly unpredictable league to be in, and no one has a god-given right to beat anybody else on any given day.

In fairness, Wigan weren’t particularly impressive but rode their luck effectively, aided by some pusillanimous refereeing, and had Ben Gibson’s error not gifted them a lead it is hard to believe that City wouldn’t have won the game given their overall dominance.

There is still work to be done, but it was heartening to see a clear progression from the disappointing showing at Cardiff as City moved the ball quicker and looked much less predictable in their build-up. Clearly more quality is needed in the final ball, but that will come,

Marcelino Nunez showed some good touches on his debut, but what struck me most was his athleticism and with Gabriel Sara making a brief appearance too it’s clear what Dean Smith and the scouting team were looking for in signing the two South Americans.

I made the point before the Cardiff game that I thought that Smith seemed to be looking to create a similar midfield set-up to the one he had at Villa with two mobile and physical players driving the side and a creative player given the freedom to play wherever he saw opportunities, and it was noticeable that Todd Cantwell appeared to have been given even more licence to roam than against Cardiff.

Clearly, it will take Sara longer than Nunez to get up to speed, having been out of action for so long, but there was a tantalising glimpse of what he can bring on Tuesday night when he started the move that led to Danel Sinani’s goal with a sweeping pass from inside his own half, but got himself into the Birmingham six-yard box by the time that the cross came in.

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Unsurprisingly, given that he’s an established international, Nunez looks the more complete player, but the prospect of a midfield with the two of them and Isaac Hayden is a tantalising prospect, albeit one we will have to wait for.

Jordan Hugill of Norwich heads for goal during the Carabao Cup First Round match against Birmingham

Action from the midweek tussle with Birmingham - Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

Tuesday night’s game also gave some of the fringe players an opportunity to make a mark and Liam Gibbs did his prospects no harm with an assured performance, including a nerveless penalty in the shootout, and looks remarkably comfortable on the ball for a young player.

Clearly, he needs football so he may need to go out on loan, particularly given the arrival of Aaron Ramsey last week. I confess to knowing nothing about Ramsey, but I’ve heard good things about him from friends at Villa, although after the Billy Gilmour experience I’ll be reserving judgment for now.

It was sad to hear a few boos on Saturday. I appreciate that there is a section of the fanbase who will never forgive Dean Smith for replacing Daniel Farke (although that’s hardly Smith’s fault), and in all honesty he has yet to fully win me over, but it’s worth looking back to Farkeball’s first season when City recorded 15 wins in 46 games and were often a tough watch.

Yes, the intricate passing style that would become Farke’s trademark was emerging, but it was producing little end result as players struggled with what was being asked of them. On occasions the team were horribly naïve, and the season culminated in a dreadful performance at Hillsborough where the players and Farke were booed off by the embarrassed travelling fans.

Farke eventually came good, but it took over a season and Smith will quite rightly be given the time to do the same.