JAMES_SHIPLEE on Bolton (A), Mark Lawrenson and Monday`s visit of Sunderland
So the season is up and running for the Canaries after a 2-1 win at Bolton. I was, again, on a course so missed the majority of the match but what I did hear I was impressed. Except for that one decision which meant we set a new record and broke an old one.
A penalty conceded in five consecutive games means Paul Lambert`s men have beaten the Crazy Gang`s (Wimbledon for my younger readers) record of 4 in a row set back in 1999. Another easy fall from another player but David N’Gog was heading away from goal so why challenge? Just pressure him away from the goal – he`s no trouble if he`s going away. These lessons aren`t getting through but need to NOW. The run will keep going unless we manage to do so.
The bigger talking point, and ’embarrassing’ according to ‘expert’ Mark Lawrenson, was Ivan Klasnic`s head-butt on Marc Tierney. He got the slightest of touches (if any) from the Croatian and he went straight to ground. Now, yes he probably didn`t even feel anything but he needed to do it. Everyone else in the Premier League would`ve done the same thing and whilst it`s cheating you need to make sure you level the playing field.
If it had been Rooney, Drogba, Gerrard – anyone (enter name here), Lawrenson would`ve claimed he had to go down and he`d been clever but because we`re ‘Little Old Norwich’ it was just embarrassing. Although can anyone explain to me how going down easy for a penalty and going down easily to get someone sent off is different because I`m struggling to figure it out!?
I don`t want to see our team cheat and lower our standards to those of the established Premier League clubs but if we are to survive in this league we have to adapt, in attack, in defence, in our attitude and mannerisms. That`s the only reason I`m saying well done to Tierney; he`s figured we need to fight dirty. We aren`t United, we won`t get the referees decision when there is doubt.
On the plus side, away from the negativity, we have our first three points! We can start to push on from here; 5 points from 15 isn`t amazing but another 38, in my opinion from 33 games will give us enough to survive (43). Next Monday at Sunderland is a great opportunity to show that it wasn`t a lucky win, that the referee didn`t ‘help us out a bit’ and that we mean business.
It`s also a chance to win a trophy, albeit a small one. For those that don`t know, Norwich and Sunderland play for the Friendship Trophy each time they play each other, which was established after the 1985 Milk Cup Final. Sunderland currently hold the trophy after the 4-1 league cup win in 2009; the only time I can ever recall Owain Tudur-Jones playing as he scored an own goal. I`m hoping we fair up better this time round! OTBC!
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