After last night's happy return to Norfolk for ex-Academy coach Adie Boothroyd, the now Watford boss revealed the Hornets' extra day's rest had a vital part to play in the league-leaders' 3-1 victory.
Although the Canaries were still in with a shout after Lee Croft's second-half goal, in truth, they were lacking the spark of Sunday's East Anglian derby. It was understandable really, the sheer nature of the occasion was exhausting for all involved and it was always going to be a massive ask to be at full throttle again just over 48 hours later.
Having played a day earlier in Saturday's 3-0 home defeat to West Brom, the away team came flying out of the blocks and the first-half proved to be key as the Hornets overpowered their hosts and found themselves deservedly two goals up at the break.
Whilst City staged a fightback of sorts ? if not of Ipswich standards – it was always going to be too big a mountain to climb and Marlon King's late goal secured all three points for the Hertfordshire club.
“Did the extra day's rest give us an advantage? Without a doubt,” said Boothroyd, speaking to the gathered press after the game.
“I watched the game on Sunday and I thought it was a great spectacle, a lovely game to watch, very, very open ? almost like two boxers going toe to toe. The emotion of getting up for a big game against your local rivals and to come back from 2-0 down must have definitely taken its toll.
“I thought they might be emotionally and physically drained and in the first-half we had too much for them. Although they started well, we managed to grind them down because of it.”
As for the Canaries, as each game goes by, the gap between themselves ? with only nine points to show for their season so far ? and Championship safety grows ever wider.
To be fair, it won't be against the Watfords of this Championship world where City's fate will be decided; it will be the Colchesters, Scunthorpes and Blackpools that will need to be put to the sword if they are to start climbing the table.
Even Plymouth (a) this Saturday must be seen as a winnable match because yet again ? Watford and West Brom apart ? the clubs in English football's second tier are much of a muchness and if confidence is to be restored at Colney, then the Canaries must start picking up points sooner rather than later.
But with 31 games left and plenty of points to play for, Boothroyd is confident that the Norfolk club can drag themselves out of trouble ? with Glenn Roeder the right man to mastermind the great escape.
“I think they can get out of it and you can see that the players are playing for him (Roeder),” added the 36-year-old Hornets chief.
“They had a real go at us in the second-half and the game on Sunday suggests that there will be lots for Norwich City fans to shout about. Knowing Glenn as I do, I think the club suits him, it's a nice fit and I'm sure he'll get them going and they'll go on a good run of results.”
After watching a spirited Canary fightback at the weekend, Boothroyd must have had a sense of d?j? vu when Croft pulled one back for City on 64 minutes but with the likes of Marlon King and Darius Henderson leading the line, a breakaway third was always on the cards and so it proved.
They pushed forward with menace and purpose all evening and in truth, they could have been more than two-up at half-time but Boothroyd admitted there were a few jitters at 2-1, even if it would have been an injustice had Roeder's men drawn themselves level.
“I'd be lying if I said I wasn't worried at 2-1. But it was almost as if we took our foot off the pedal and then put it back on.
“We're always liable to score on the break whilst we are under pressure and Norwich had to chase the game. Thankfully we took one of the chances we managed to create.”
It would be a major surprise – on this showing certainly ? if the Hornets did not claim one of the two automatic promotion spots and the Vicarage Road boss was left licking his lips after a first-half showing that he described as one of the best of the season.
“I was pleased with the result and the first-half performance. That was as good as anything we've played all season and we have tried to build on our efficiency.
“2-0 at half-time is a horrible score and I felt that if we didn't start right then the opposition can come back into it. After Norwich scored, we took a lot of pressure but we managed to deal with it and we're always likely to score another one when we've got players in the team like Marlon King and Darius Henderson.”