Friday, September 18, 2009

Norwich preview

After my epic post on the financial meltdown elicited just four comments (one of which was mine), I'll return to the rather more mundane business of an away fixture at Norwich.

It explains why I've found the transition to a Twitter world difficult. Why use 140 characters, if 13,562 will do?

Perhaps some readers took one of my favourite Woody Allen quotes to heart: "I took a speed reading course and read 'War and Peace' in twenty minutes. It involves Russia."

On 23rd April 2005, this fixture took place in the Premiership, a late goal from ex-Addick Matty Svensson securing three points for doomed Norwich. The surroundings won't have changed, but everything else is different.

Despite only spending a single season back in the top flight in 2004/5, the Canaries did not settle quickly back into life in the Championship. Two finishes of 16th and 17th preceded their relegation last season, so the writing was already on the wall.

For a club that became a byword for stability during its heyday (just four managers from 1972-1994), it has been a victim of gross mismanagement since, with the likes of Bryan Hamilton, Peter Grant, Glenn Roeder and Bryan Gunn spending short and unsuccessful spells in the manager's dugout.

Clubs like Norwich benefit from their one-club city status, ensuring a relatively stable and loyal support base. They were the third best supported club in the Championship last season despite dire performances.

However their first appearance in the top flight was not until 1972/73, and their presence there until relegation in 1994/95 was punctuated by three round trips back to the old Division Two, from which they amazingly bounced straight back each time.

As a likeable family-oriented club like Charlton, located in the centre of a pleasant and not so distant city, this would have been one of the more eagerly awaited away fixtures for Addicks fans, reflected in decent numbers travelling.

With the completion of the new 8,000-seater Jarrold Stand, the stadium is now modern throughout and a pleasant place to watch football. Away fans were previously housed in the cramped surroundings of the old South Stand.

We have enjoyed considerable recent success on our trips to Norwich, most recently and memorably the 1-0 FA Cup win achieved last season with a Charlton team full of youthful endeavour.

Looking further back, we actually managed four successive wins there from 1996-1999. Andy Hunt scored a hat-trick in a 3-0 win in 1999/2000, following the precedent set by Clive Mendonca in an even more emphatic 4-0 win in 1997/98.

A stunning late Mark Kinsella winner secured a 2-1 win in 1995/96, just eight months after Bradley Allen nicked a 1-0 win for the Addicks there.

Meanwhile fans of a certain age and with good memories, may remember an incredible Paul Mortimer goal in a 3-1 in October 1988.

Norwich's form this season marks them out as the most inconsistent and thus unpredictable team in League One.

An absurd 7-1 defeat to Colchester saw the Canaries swiftly appoint the architect of that defeat (Paul Lambert) as their own manager.

He has instilled a degree of confidence back into his new side, wins over former club Wycombe and also Hartlepool, helping to install Norwich back into midtable.

Indeed it is notable that only five players who started against Colchester, also started at MK Dons during the week.

From Charlton's perspective, whilst losing our winning start to a side led by Alan Pardew was disappointing, it perhaps permits us to refocus back on what really matters ie, promotion, not breaking club records.

From a more positive standpoint, for the second time this season we came from a goal down to earn something from a game, and Phil Parkinson was once again able to name an unchanged side. He should be able to do so again.

Whilst wins at the likes of Orient, Hartlepool and Tranmere are very welcome, going to a grander ground like Norwich's and still dictating affairs and taking the points, would really hammer home that this Charlton side means business this season.

NY Addick predicts: Norwich 0, Charlton 2 (Bailey, Burton). Att: 23,290.

8 Comments:

At 4:34 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I read the excellent meltdown post and thought about commenting, but decided that after such a well-written and informative post, anything I might have said other than "here here" was superfluous...keep up the good work NYA!

Pedro45

 
At 9:53 PM, Blogger dog said...

I sense an undertone of disappointment that your, excellent meltdown piece only elicited 4 comments.
So, let me say I really enjoyed reading it and indeed your previous pieces that forewarned of the current catastrophe.
Since I have little inclination to read any other expert analysis, I've decided to take your word as gospel ;-)

 
At 4:10 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I also read the meltdown post and my head still aches.

 
At 9:41 AM, OpenID jruns said...

I think you could be a bit more precise with your attendance predictions. Tell us what you really think!

 
At 12:58 AM, Anonymous JockAddick said...

NYA, I enjoyed the fine weather and the last minute equaliser, in bleacker street today. I have been offered a job over here and I am checking it out. I think Tribeca might not be a good move though!

 
At 3:11 PM, Anonymous newyorkaddick said...

Good luck with your possible move - email me at newyorkaddick@yahoo.co.uk if you want any advice.

 
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