With an enforced break on the pitch, it’s the state-of-play off the pitch that now grips the faithfulThu 1 Sep 16 by Russell Saunders
This season’s transfer dealings in the Championship were never going to be straightforward.
The presence of Newcastle and Villa, with their super-rich owners essentially buying themselves a completely new team with vastly inflated fees and salary packages was always going to put everyone else, including Norwich, on the back foot.
David McNally’s bolt out of the blue exit, leaving a gaping hole which needed filling wisely rather than quickly, also provided an unfortunate obstacle.
Mr Moxey is now in position. Whatever rumours emanating from the old gold part of the West Midlands you care to believe about him, he will have the best interest of his new employer at heart. Why wouldn’t he?
A section of City fans have bemoaned the fact that the club didn’t do its transfer business early in the summer and avoid the mad last gasp scramble that’s inevitably happened over the last few days.
Maybe, maybe not. But where the hell’s the fun in that scenario?
It’s not like we were the only ones.
Bigger clubs than ours (Chelsea, Everton, Spurs etc) were all scrabbling at the death to get deals done before 11 pm last night.
Every season, Tony Pulis seems to pop up last minute to squeeze incoming through his current club’s door. If it’s good enough for track-suit Tone, then it’s good enough for me.
I appreciate I’m in the minority here, but I think we’ve had a good summer with reasonably-priced incoming talent and having held on to one or two who most thought would be out of Norfolk faster than you can say Zlatan Ibrahimovic.
Canos, Pritchard and Oliveira all offer exciting potential that Alex Neil and his team needs to gel into the first team and get the most out of. Always easier said than done.
Getting those unfortunate early season injured in key positions back to match fitness will be a huge positive over the coming weeks.
Pinto and Jerome have been excellent while Olsson’s return will stabilise the defence and allow Brady to express himself more positively in the opposition half. We’ve missed that badly over the last three/four games.
Plus, Alex seems keen to blood some of the young talent bubbling away in U21/23, B and reserve sides. That’s what most of us wanted to see wasn’t it?
Periods between signing announcements seem to be thought of as periods of total inactivity, with relevant figures at the club just not trying hard enough. Plain silly.
Ross McCormack wanted too much money in his back pocket for us and Britt Assombalonga and Forest never seemed keen to part.
The last day interest of Sunderland in John Ruddy and Steven Naismith provided an added complication in terms of juggling possible ins versus outs. Figures had to be re-calculated.
Ruddy’s offer was insulting and Naismith’s personal terms didn’t suit – City fans will welcome the former staying put more than the latter. Naismith has some damage repair to do here on in.
While the Premier League and Sky Sports slapped each other on their chubby cheeks at having crossed the £1 billion barrier, and the evil Ashley-Xia axis vastly inflated tier two talent beyond the reach of the rest, City have been prudent and, in the words of chief new wheeler and dealer Moxey, “shrewd”.
This phrase only served to irritate those of the Yellow Army who seemingly couldn’t care about (or just don’t understand) the financial practicalities of the club when gazing longingly at events further north.
Personally, I’m reassured by such blatant common sense.
Whichever side of the fence you sit, happy or not with the squad we have, the window is closed until January.
The dice has been rolled and no one knows what’s going to happen in the rest of 2016.
It’s time to give the playing squad and management the benefit of any doubt and get fully behind them through the inevitable highs and lows to come.
Get a grip everyone.