I’m not sure if it’s an age thing or a Gowers thing, but the older I get the less I care about what Norwich City’s new kit of the day looks like.
Or it could just be a grumpy old git thing.
Either way, I’d have had no problem with Brentford’s ongoing two-year approach, which includes announcing that their new kit for 2023-24 will also be their kit for 2024-25.
In the midst of a cost of living crisis, that, to me, seems a very reasonable and humane approach, albeit I also understand such an approach comes at a cost to the club.
But, with many of us struggling to pay bills, I respect such a gesture, as I’m sure do the fans of the Bees. Not PR for the sake of PR, but something that will literally save fans from forking out a large chunk of money they can ill afford.
Not that Norwich City offering the same gesture would have saved yours truly £55 – not only do I not have anything like £55 to spare, but also haven’t actually bought a City shirt since 2005-06. That was the point at which middle age really started to get hold, and when me and football shirts ceased being a good combination.
But I get that for many, the new shirt is a must-buy, as will be proven on opening day when the ground will be positively flooded with bright yellow shirts with narrow green hoops.
I say bright because they really are but what was interesting was how, as part of the launch, the filtering of the images gave an impression of a much more subtle (and, in my view, likable) yellow.
Called me old-fashioned, but if it was necessary to use a filter to make them look cool and edgy for the launch pics, why not manufacture them in that colour in the first place?
But, before I get accused of having another moan, that’s just an observation rather than a complaint. I’m old, I get that – I have no concept of style and/or the world of digital imagery.
Any anyway… of far more importance than what the kit looks like is how David Wagner’s men perform when they wear it.
We’re still at a stage of pre-season when what happens on the grass on matchday is of less importance than what occurs on the training fields of Colney, Germany, and Austria, but there’s been enough so far to encourage those who do still prefer to pass immediate judgment.
What is, perhaps, a little surprising is that the squad overhaul that we were promised has, as yet, failed to materialise.
We were told to be patient and that any activity that would involve spending money will likely occur after July 1, when most players’ contracts expire, but so far nothing doing.
I’m guessing this is directly related to the fact we have to sell in order to spend, and there’s of course still time, but in terms of integrating new players into the group, I’d imagine Wagner – maybe even Stuart Webber – would have preferred to have done more business so far than just four freebies, one of whom is unfortunately out until October.
That, in itself, is very Norwichy, albeit just borne of very bad luck.
Our summer spending was, by Webber’s own admission, reliant on the sale of Max Aarons and Andrew Omobamidele and if there are no offers or at least offers that the Club deems acceptable, then there will be no sales and therefore no income.
That is where we are. I’ll leave it there.
At the moment we’re being outspent by that lot and I’m not sure I like it 😊
What I do accept is that Webber and Wagner will be making use of the Premier League loan market and for that, we have no option but to sit tight and await the finalising of their squads, which naturally occurs at the very back end of the window.
While, for such signings, provisional plans can be put in place, the nature of that market means it becomes very much a scrum with loads of teams vying for the same players and offers and counter-offers flying to and fro. And we know what usually happens when we end up in anything akin to an auction.
So let’s not pin our hopes too much on unearthing a Premier League gem. We could end up with the next Billy Gilmour.
So, still plenty of work to be done, at least there is if we’re going to be delivered the major squad overhaul we were promised. Perhaps, for reasons beyond their control, W&W have had to U-turn on that Utopian dream.
Time will tell.
And at least those who were sweating over the look of the new kit can finally offer their critique and then, if they chose, give Wagner an unknown proportion of £55 towards a new signing.