That we have all become die-hard Baggies for the day speaks volumes.
So too the fact that, from the most wretched of seasons, it all boils down to a shoot-out that is happening over 250 miles away and over which which we have no control whatsoever.
And with a bore draw suiting both teams perfectly it is sufficient to make the stomach churn… and has.
My own coping mechanism is one of assuming the worst while hoping for the best. Twitter is full of folk telling us to ‘#ncfc #believe’ and I applaud the sentiment and their optimism. I’ve tried – believe me I have – but for the last six months I have been doing just that and look where it has taken us.
No, I’m afraid the time for blind faith is almost over. My unbridled and unswerving faith in the Class of 2014 has almost been broken.
Sunday was good of course, and there is no denying that had that result been acquired early or mid-season we’d have been purring all the way to mid-table, but in the circumstances an unbelievably well and hard-earned goalless draw felt like a defeat.
Yes, they delivered at the Bridge but for most of these horrific final few months of the season they’ve come up short – often by some distance. And that’s why we find ourselves in the ridiculous position of kidding ourselves that a Sunderland side who are unbeaten in four, including away wins at Chelsea and Manchester United, are about to implode.
That they have another home game – against Swansea – at the weekend makes it all the more implausible.
So, while there is probably two or three percent of me left dreaming the dream, the rest is already preparing for life in the Championship. That fearful place that Paul Lambert and David McNally treated with such wonderful contempt four long seasons ago.
It goes without saying that once our fate is decided (10pm this evening?) the inquest will begin in earnest, with the opening shots having already been fired… some in the direction of this website!
The decision by the Board to keep faith with Chris Hughton will clearly be at the forefront of the debate, but so too the dealings in the January transfer window.
With the benefit of hindsight, to have emerged from the mid-season free-for-all with a 33 year-old central defender and a 30 year-old, injury prone, left-winger when the team was crying, yelling and screaming out for someone to put the ball in the net was a mis-judgement of the highest order.
It is well known that McNally is no lover of the January window and its failure to deliver value for money, but a costly gamble may have been sufficient to score us another six goals.
A costly gamble versus missing out on the BT Sport 2014/15 cash bonanza? No contest.
But, for whatever reason, it didn’t happen and the decision makers are now left with nothing but to lick their wounds.
Hindsight is wonderful isn’t it? As disappointed as we all were that Jim White wasn’t able to introduce a sensational ‘Sky Sports understands…’ moment for us, few bemoaned the two signings that did arrive; most in fact agreeing that Jonas Guttierez would add some much needed quality from wide areas, in the absence of the injured Anthony Pilkington and Elliott Bennett.
That said Argentinian has spent most of his time on the Colney (or perhaps Darsley Park) treatment table says much about how unkind the footballing gods have been to us. If it could go wrong it probably has, which is par for the course when on a downward and uncontrollable spiral.
But too many ifs and buts.
Looking back, too many decisions made over the last year have been the wrong ones but, in reality, how many of us would have done it too much differently?
From the comfort of a keyboard we all know better than those charged with doing it for real, but only David, Delia, Michael and co carry the weight of expectation of the Canary Nation.
In hindsight, those who called for the head of Chris Hughton in December will consider their campaign to have been vindicated, but the decision to retain his services was made in good faith on the basis that a league position that hovered around fourteenth place could be maintained.
Ultimately, we all want what’s best for Norwich City Football Club of course – that much we do have in common – but there are more than 30,000 different views on how it can be best achieved.
Assuming the worst happens – either later today or on Sunday – there are some big calls to be made by those in power. Both for their own futures and the futures of others. Personally, I’m hoping for no change at the top table but we’ll see…
For now, let’s keep everything crossed for a miracle. They do happen. Ipswich almost made the play-offs.