Spud Thornhill: That’s the way to brighten up a Norwich fan’s day back at work!
- Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd
Like most football fans, my mood swings are definitely affected by events concerning Norwich City.
In the last two months I've found the odd non-City fans I know have suddenly wanted to know me more than they did a year ago, when we were winning more frequently.
After last Saturday's superb result at Everton, my mood had swung to a massive high. Monday morning and work was suddenly more bearable than it has been most Mondays this season. Those non-Canaries went missing again on Monday, with the talk was all positive and yellow and green.
One work colleague, an Arsenal fan with a soft spot for his home club Norwich, always chats to me about City and is a lot more philosophical than a lot of Norwich fans. Just like me, he loves a stat. He pointed out to me how Daniel Farke has adapted to Premier League - despite what some Norwich fans may believe.
This season we have made an average of 460 passes per game - the least amount came against Manchester City and Everton, with 317 and 303 passes respectively.
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Defensively is where we have struggled, as we all know. We have made more clearances in the Manchester City, Bournemouth and Everton games - 50, 33 and 34 respectively - and haven't lost. Is it a coincidence that in these games Farke has tried to change the style of play to be more aggressive and get the ball out instead of passing it out?
We may have to be more patient on some of the Farkeball whilst we are fighting for survival this season. We can't play Newcastle United every week, where our football was at its best this season.
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With me being unable to go last Saturday, I was again relying on Radio Norfolk and Chris Goreham talking us through the game. It sounded like our approach was completely different to other games I've listened to or watched this season, something we will have to do this season.
Another reason for our success last week at Goodison Park was the players returning to the squad, ie Christoph Zimmermann. That is something we have been desperate for since August, a more recognised centre half. Thank goodness.
It was great to see Zimmermann, because it allowed Alex Tettey and Ibrahim Amadou to play in their more natural positions. His leadership has been missing and in just one game, going by what I've been told, Zimmermann showed the character that has made him such a favourite. It also looked liked Ben Godfrey could concentrate more on his job because Zimmermann is back.
Going by what I saw on TV or heard on the radio last Saturday, Godfrey looked a lot more comfortable and was at his best again. Also, how immense was Sam Bryam? After his excellent performance against Manchester City, it was a shame he was out of the starting team after falling ill just two games later. I'm just glad Farke has the selection headache and not me when Jamal Lewis is back.
Having Tom Trybull and Tettey in the holding midfield gave our defence the proper protection which we missed when we have not had a holding midfielder in recent weeks.
This also gave so much freedom for Todd Cantwell. It gave him the opportunity to play his game and people who have followed his game from his youth days know what he is capable of. And maybe after last week's performance, the fans who have been far too quick to be criticise the young Canary, maybe, just maybe will give him the credit he deserves. We had much more balance throughout the team.
Next praise was for Dennis Srbeny. For a man who has been playing third fiddle on the striker front for the last two seasons he deserves all the praise and the success. The way the team celebrated his goal with him on Saturday shows the respect and support he has from his team-mates.
My final praise goes to the 1,700 Canaries who travelled to Merseyside. Lots of those have travelled many miles already this season without any success. The support sounded fantastic on the radio.
Our season started on Merseyside. Not at Anfield in August, but hopefully last week at Goodison Park. If we can have more performances like last week, we will be okay.
Maybe when I return back to work on Monday, my Arsenal-supporting work colleague will hopefully be even more complimentary towards us.
Come on, you yellows.