I don’t want to get too carried away but what a difference we have seen in the last eleven days.
Norwich City have just won four games in a row and the last three have all been away from home. Who would’ve thought that would happen prior to kick off against Middlesbrough at Carrow Road a couple of Saturdays ago?
Certainly not me.
I was expecting we would be beaten by ‘Boro and I don’t mind admitting that to you. The opening five games of the season had given me little optimism for the months ahead but the Carabao Cup win at Cardiff sparked an upturn in fortunes.
A decent win, Yes, but the following game against Ipswich with our “first XI” was too scrappy to really see or call much improvement. Since then though, it’s been pretty impressive stuff from Daniel Farke’s men.
There is a caveat to all this however, because we shouldn’t overlook the fact that all of these games have been won by only the odd goal.
We’ve won those games though and that is all that matters. For me, the biggest difference has been having strikers that can actually score regularly.
Last night, having watched Jordan Rhodes bag a hat trick against Wycombe, Farke told the media that he feels that Rhodes is the best finisher in the Championship and that this title was possibly only challenged by Teemu Pukki.
He may be a little biased and so might I but what an impact these two have made, particularly Pukki.
The former Celtic and Brondby man has started the season on fire with an astonishing 8 goals in 12 appearances for club and country and then when he’s given a well-earned rest for last night’s cup game, his replacement scores a hat-trick. Such competition has pretty much been unheard of in these parts for years and years.
Most teams would snatch your hand off to have a striker in Pukki’s current form but to have two, well, that is a nice problem to have for Herr Farke.
As I say, I’m not getting carried away just yet but it really does seem that a promotion challenge is actually possible. The squad has some real depth to it and we’ve got strikers that are scoring goals, so the ingredients are all there.
The backdrop to these four wins is even more impressive when you consider that they’ve come in the midst of a mini injury crisis. The fact we’ve won all these games without Grant Hanley and Kenny McKean and three of those victories have come without Onel Hernandez too, make it really rather special.
The Championship grind will chew you up and spit you out though if you are not ready in every single game. Farke has a full season under his belt, so there can be no excuses about learning the ropes of the division but he really does seem to be getting a tune out of his squad now.
Next up are Wigan, a newly promoted team that have a great work ethic and have had a decent start to life back in the Championship, no doubt tapping into some of last season’s momentum.
They will be dangerous and they won’t be frightened of a trip to Carrow Road. At the moment, things are all rosy in the Canary garden. It’s up to the Head Coach and players to keep up the good work and keep our own momentum going.