It maybe the season for giving, but City's mission at Carrow Road on Boxing Day is to take all three points off a Charlton team that did likewise to them in controversial circumstances at The Valley back in September.
Alan Pardew's men are a safe bet to be contesting one of the top six places next May and they have generally enjoyed a decent start to their campaign, but they're probably not on City's Christmas card list after the events in that corresponding fixture.
Two late Andy Reid penalties ultimately settled the contest that night, and while no-one could argue with the result given the considerable amount of possession that the home side undoubtedly enjoyed combined with what can only be described as a feeble attempt at attacking from the Canaries, the fact that the game ended in the manner it did – as well as Dion Dublin also being red-carded – should be all the motivation that City need.
In fact, given the fantastic run that Norwich are currently enjoying and the manner in which they will now be approaching games in ultra-confident mood, the motivational aspect of preparing the team for matches will more than likely take care of itself.
Glenn Roeder for one will be delighted that the games arrive thick and fast at this time of the year, seeing as although he would be the first to accept that there is still plenty of work to be done before the time will hopefully arrive when he can sit back without concern and watch his side as going about their business as the finished article, when a team is winning matches in the manner the Canaries' are at present, the last thing that you want is a breather.
Similarly as at Colchester a week earlier, City struggled to find their rhythm at Scunthorpe at the weekend, but they eventually ran out winners largely thanks to this new-found discipline and steely spirit that has been running throughout the side since the managerial changeover.
Norwich are no longer the soft touch they undoubtedly once were, and the times when we were virtually guaranteed to see them fold like a pack of cards and allow themselves to be trampled over once it became apparent that they were not going to have things all their own way thankfully now seems to be a thing of the past.
It's as though the chicken and egg conundrum has been played out here at Norwich in front of our very eyes over the past ten matches, where the necessary levels of self-belief and confidence have increased exponentially with winning matches, but when matches have been particularly difficult to win because the self-belief and confidence wasn't present in the first place.
By whatever means, City now appear to have cracked the puzzle, and it's certainly showed in their recent results.
The Norwich back four and David Marshall in goal deserve all the plaudits for the Canaries' victory at Glanford Park, as they more than either of the other two units in the side do appear to be very much on top of their game at the moment.
Only one goal conceded in the last three matches is testament to their collective professionalism, but after a couple of off-days in the last two matches it's now time for the midfielders and forwards to get back to work and start giving opposition defences more problems than they have been doing.
There's no denying that messers Huckerby, Pattison, Smith, Fotheringham, Russell, Dublin, Evans and Cureton have chipped in with their defensive duties and played their part, but Roeder and 24,000 City fans will be looking for them to step on the gas again in these next two home games, not only to give the defenders a bit of an easier time than of late, but also to make it a very merry Christmas indeed and take us into the New Year with another six points on the board.
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