This time last week I wrote that the Phoney War was about to end and the kind of real one was ready to begin on Friday, June 19 at 1800 hours precisely.
That hasn’t changed of course, plus I’ve had the bonus of regular MFW commenter John telling me the Southampton game is live on Freeview 11, aka Sky’s Pick TV, a channel I’d honestly never previously heard of – thanks John!
The worst-kept secret in the world was unveiled on Friday evening when we rocked up to the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium for what turned out to be four quarters of 30 minutes each as Spurs’ friendly with Reading on the Saturday had been cancelled at short notice, which doubtless suited both clubs.
There were a few pleasing elements about this. Details of the match itself remain sparse but we do know that Josip Drmic and Mario Vrancic popped up in the last 10 minutes to give us a 2-1 win. Meaningless maybe but it can only boost morale. More on Mario in a very short while.
I managed to raid the Spurs website with 68 images from the match and also later NCFC official with some more, and the only three players I couldn’t see were Timm, Teemu and Zimbo. I’m sure they were there though.
A mate sent me a Twitter clip of Mario’s goal – shades of Sheffield Wednesday or what. A brilliant strike from a free kick in the same position that he hit that corker against the Owls.
And afterwards Jose Mourinho said: “We didn’t play a game against Norwich City. We played a game with Norwich City”. Admirable.
With a bit of hope, and indeed anticipation, in my heart, I was coming around to the idea of “bring it on”. But then yesterday Gary [quite rightly] knocked my confidence back with his revelations from the world of Twitter whereby some so-called supporters of other clubs are on the cusp of claiming we have deliberately manufactured a positive test for Covid-19 on one of our players.
Get real numpties. Who on earth would contrive to contract that wretched disease?
No, we don’t [yet] know who the unfortunate player is but some sad weirdo will be trying to root it out as I write. Whoever it is I certainly hope it is asymptomatic and wish the poor fella well in every sense of the word.
And from a cynically pragmatic point of view, he is the only one who must self isolate for seven days – nobody else in the Norwich or Spurs squads or coaching staff. It’s the less-than-15 minutes of constant close contact ruling that sees to that.
Elsewhere there have been a couple of reports that really warm the old cockles.
There was a heartwarming story in the media the other day about Man U and England star Marcus Rashford who has shown how his considerable support for charity FareShare has more than helped them raise… drum roll… £20 million.
In his own words: “Mum worked all day every day for me. I always said if I was ever in a position to make a difference, I would”.
And closer to home through sales of her book The Story of Tommy T, Anna and Tom Trybull have donated £5,000 to both East Anglian Children’s Hospices and a local branch of Age Concern. Plus a large donation of personal clothing to the latter.
It’s funny how some folks stereotype footballers in particular and other folks in general isn’t it?
As a “dog person” with a couple of terriers, I was delighted to read yesterday that Arsenal keeper Bernd Leno has taken a leaf out of Teemu Pukki’s book and spent some of his springtime by “training” with his pooch in the family garden. Nothing I don’t do myself lads and I hope you’ve enjoyed it as much as I do.
To end with anybody who went to Carrow Road in the 1990s will recognise this all too well. It was inflicted on us immediately prior to kick-off for several years.
But for us in the here and now it couldn’t be more apposite.