Well, thank goodness that the Canaries shook off the cobwebs that had started to accumulate from their previous four matches and delivered an altogether considerably improved performance at Palace.
As I alluded to not so long ago, just doing enough in certain matches against some of the lesser teams will get you by and even see you pick up valuable points, but then you run into opponent that is bang in form and an altogether different proposition than most of the rest, and, if you're not up to the challenge, suddenly the picture becomes crystal clear.
Safe to say, though, that at Selhurst Park Norwich were more than ready to counter whatever the form team of the moment in this division had in store for them.
In fact, it was more than a case of City simply turning up and delivering the usual levels of commitment that we have pleasingly now come to expect of them, as for large chunks of the game they proceeded to move the ball between themselves with real quality and accuracy and looked by the far the better side.
Some of City's one-touch approach play was particularly impressive, and there were numerous occasions whereby Lee Croft was released down the right flank and presented with the opportunity to attack his full-back.
And attack him he certainly did.
Croft was in outstanding form all afternoon, and completely justified Glenn Roeder's decision to include him from the start at the expense of Darren Huckerby who after a couple of off-key displays had to settle for a place on the bench.
Indeed Norwich were strong in all areas of the pitch ? they were solid at the back, energetic and disciplined in midfield and a threat in attack, and that's how it should be with this bunch of players.
But it does make it even more frustrating and surprising why they haven't managed to play like this in other games recently ? especially the previous four -when you see an example like this of precisely just what the Canaries are capable of.
Whatever, it was certainly good to see City with the bit between their teeth in this manner, and not only demonstrating the basics from a physical point of view, but also performing with creativity, intelligence and real quality.
Aside from Croft who was easily the pick of the bunch, Dion Dublin and Jamie Cureton were two other players in yellow shirts that also caught the eye.
Cureton looked lively and his first touch regularly had the Palace rearguard in trouble – most notably when his perfect lay-off to Dublin lead to Darel Russell opening the scoring – while Dublin lead the line superbly well; winning more than his fair share of headers and generally proving a real handful for his markers.
At the back, Jason Shackell and Gary Doherty continued what has generally been an impressive central defensive partnership of late, and full-backs Otsemobor and especially Camara were also solid and looked comfortable in a back four that seems to be improving with every game.
So all in all a very gratifying display from the Canaries from a game that many ? myself included ? had anticipated beforehand as being a potential hiding considering the recent form and performances of the two sides.
It wasn't so much that the Canaries set a new benchmark for themselves with yesterday's excellent display, more that they returned to it after an extended sabbatical.
As for Roeder's opinion of it all, he simply said afterwards that he thought that his side were ?excellent from start to finish,? and also that he regarded this as ?City's best away performance of the season…?
And I, for one, certainly wouldn't disagree.
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