City boss Bryan Gunn left Stark's Park last night with much to ponder after the Canaries opened their three-game tour of Scotland with a 1-0 win over Raith Rovers.
The on-trial Paul McVeigh grabbed the game's only goal on the hour-mark to further his claims for another full-time contract off his former employers, while Gunn also used the night's clash to run the rule over all three of his on-trial strikers.
The Serb Goran Maric was handed the chance to shine in the game's first 56 minutes; he was then replaced by ex-Leeds United star Michael Bridges. Jamie Cureton's evening out also ended on the 56th minute mark when he was replaced by Scottish Under-19 striker Chris Craig.
This morning and Radio Norfolk were reporting that the Canary chief had added another new face to his clutch of wannabes and hopefuls – Danish centre-half Jens Berkel Askou.
The 26-year-old teamed up with the Canaries at their Scottish training camp in time to witness last night's opening tour victory – a win that keeps City's perfect pre-season record intact following the 6-0 win over Fakenham on Friday night and the 7-2 dismissal of Dartford on Saturday.
Askou has played most of his football in the Danish equivalent of the Championship for Silkeborg IF, but left on a short-term deal to join the Turkish outfit Kasimpasa earlier this year.
At six-foot three-inches tall, he has the height and – one suspects – might arrive on the advice of ex-Canary favourite Steen Nedergaard.
Whether he has the quality to shove the likes of David Stephens and fellow Dane Dario Dumic back down the pecking order is for the next six days to decide with the Canaries able to offer Askou a run-out on Thursday with their afternoon clash against the Scottish Premier League outfit, St Johnstone.
Last night's strike has certainly done McVeigh's hopes of winning a full-time deal no harm as he sent Raith keeper Gary O'Connor the wrong way four minutes after his arrival on the pitch. Matty Pattison was the provider; Jon Otsemobor the one to make way for McVeigh's trial outing.
“He's come on there today; he's changed the game and we saw with the finish – wrong-footing the defender, wrong-footing the goalkeeper,” the City chief told BBC Radio Norfolk afterwards. “So he's doing the right things.
“We've got the rest of this week to concentrate on. We've got the game against St Johnstone on Thursday afternoon and the game against Airdrie on Saturday, so there's opportunities for Paul and others to shine.”
With the Lee Croft 'hole' still vacant – hence Otsemobor's start in the right-hand midfield role ahead of full-back Michael Spillane – McVeigh has a chance; particularly whilst Gunn's quest to add natural width to his side continues.
It is, of course, up front where the biggest chink in Gunn's summer armoury lies.
Last night and the 25-year-old Maric did his prospects no harm with a lively hour at Stark's Park; the one-time Barcelona B striker seeing one, first-half effort cannon back off the base of a post.
With Derby's Liam Dickinson signing in for Brighton yesterday in a reported ?300,000-plus deal, attention had switched to Colchester United's Clive Platt.
Today and the Colchester Gazette quoted the City chief's former UEFA Cup team-mate Ian Culverhouse as saying Platt was going nowhere; that another dead end loomed.
“Clive isn't going anywhere,” said Culverhouse, now No2 to U's boss Paul Lambert. “He's an integral part of our plans for the new season.”
The other interesting point to note as to last night's outing was the destination of the captain's armband with new-boy Michael Nelson taking that honour.
Given that City's starting XI featured such alternative candidates as Adam Drury, Matt Gill and Owain Tudur Jones, the former Hartlepool skipper could yet prove to be the season-long leader of men that Gunn has been looking for.
Overall, the Canary chief appeared quietly satisfied with last night's opener.
“I'm fairly happy with the performance, the fitness levels and the result, of course,” he told the club's official website afterwards.
“We've come out of it with a couple of bumps, but thats to be expected as well.
“And another pleasing aspect was a clean sheet as well. Lots of positives and not too many negatives – all-in-all a good night's work.”