If this lunchtime's events do, somehow, proving to be a turning point in Norwich's miserable season, for many there will one moment more than most that summed up an extraordinary game.
Jamie Cureton's outside-of-the-boot flick over Neil Alexander and the wild celebrations that followed. Not least from the 32-year-old himself as banged his Canary heart in front of the Barclay.
?It was a massive thing for me,? said the long-time City favourite, whose prodigal son routine this summer has now just hit a new high.
?But for the club, as a whole, and the situation we found ourselves in at half-time… we needed to get something out of the game today. We had to at all costs because things haven't been great – and we've managed to stop the rot.?
As well as City had performed in the first 45 minutes – and but for two, big misses from Cureton himself, a fabulous save from Neil Alexander to thwart Dion Dublin and the width of an upright to deny Jason Shackell it could have been 4-2 at the interval – the fact remained that at 1.30pm this afternoon they were bottom of the Championship, six points off safety and 2-0 down at home to the oldest of enemies.
And while Norwich may still be five points off 21st and with the visit of league leaders Watford to look forward to on Tuesday night, the world does look a slightly different place this evening after Glenn Roeder's first 90 minutes at the helm.
For one thing, City actually managed to deliver a decent performance live on Sky – a first in itself.
?I think he's changed it a lot,? said Cureton, quizzed as to the difference that Roeder has made in five, short days. The new City chief had his new No2 Lee Clark by his side in the technical area.
And while neither hit the point-and-scribble heights of Peter Grant, both were animated and involved. Just in a more measured way.
?He's just a more calming influence, I would say,? said Cureton. ?There's not so much shouting; it's not so intense. He's come in and been a bit more relaxed and maybe that's helped the boys a bit.
?And you've seen that today we've played in a relaxed way – considering how big the occasion was, how big the atmosphere was here I thought we were very attacking, very positive.
?And I think he's tried to put that into us – that we're a good side. He's said the slate's wiped clean; we start again from today and we've got to take a lot of positives from it.?
Not least the atmosphere that such a performance can still generate – albeit the opposition helps. ?The place was rocking,? said Cureton, as the two teams produced one of the best derby contests in recent memory.
?It was hectic – typical derby. Both teams went at it and I felt we had the upper hand; felt in control, to be honest. And then you find in five minutes that you're 2-0 down,? said Cureton, as Alan Lee's opener and Pablo Counago's disputed second put Jim Magilton's side within sight of their first away win of the season. In theory.
?It was a hard pill to take at half-time – we were a bit shell-shocked. But felt there was still more in us to get something out of it.
?We just felt we needed the goal as early as possible and jst play the same as we've been playing. We felt we'd done everything we possibly could, but score the goals.?
Norwich had created more than enough chances – two of the gilt-edged variety in Cureton's case as first Luke Chadwick and then man of the match Darel Russell teed him up no more than six yards out.
The first was smashed eight-yards wide of Alexander's right upright; the second dribbled two yards wide of the left.
?I was just praying that the game wasn't going to end in a loss and that those two misses were going to be highlighted. And I didn't mind if I didn't score – as long as we got something out of the game. Then I'd have been pretty pleased.
?Because I know what I'm like – I'd have killed myself until the next derby that I'd missed two sitters for me,? said Cureton, whose subsequent celebrations had a huge dollop of relief thrown in.
?Thankfully we got back into the game and I always felt at half-time that there was going to be more chances for me and, thankfully, there was – and I've obviously scored the hardest one of the three.?
Had it finished with just those two chances missed then the one-time Norwich apprentice would have struggled to show his face in public – Cureton is, of course, well versed in the ways of the city.
Some long-standing friendships have survived his wanderings career-wise and, you sense, he still knows where to find a good time. Only these days, at 32-years-old, he also knows when it is appropriate to find it.
Certainly that deft, little lob for his fifth goal of the season would be more than enough to earn him a drink in every pub in the city this evening.
?It's just a shame we've got a game on Tuesday – I'm gutted!? he laughed. ?We've been told no alcohol. So it's a shame that we couldn't walk around a bit and take a bit of the applause.
?But it's one game and we now have to reproduce that on Tuesday,? he added. ?We want the atmosphere the same – we have to treat every game as a derby.?
He was, more than anything, just pleased for the supporters whose patience has been so sorely tested of late.
?Everyone's gone away feeling positive – which is a big thing. Especially the fans. Because they were down.
?As much as we were, they were down and depressed about everything. But I think the point today is a massive turning point. I think the boys will come back in tomorrow very pleased and buzzing – and looking forward to Watford.?
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