So far, so good for Norwich
In a week where all the media attention is on the managerial situation at both Fulham and Cardiff, the plight of last season’s other relegated team seems to have gone in noticed.
Life in the Championship is never easy, and with so many former Premiership clubs in this division, it really is one of the toughest leagues in the world. A point made even stronger by last weeks events, as two managers a different stages in their career, had their first experience of the English lower leagues cut short. Felix Magath and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer had grown accustomed to success in their managerial careers, yet eyebrows were still raised at both appointments. Here we are less than year on, both failed to avoid relegation, and both out of a job with their clubs languishing at the wrong end of the table.
Imagine then how people felt at Norwich, when Neil Adams, a man with no previous managerial experience was giving the task of keeping them up. Having failed this task, surely he was just keeping this seat warm for a big name manager. To the shock of most of the footballing world Adams was entrusted with plotting the Canaries return to the top table. Questions were asked, was he a big enough name? Does he have the tactical knowledge? Did he have the right connections to get the players Needed to attack this league? Eight games in and I think he has already answered all of these questions.
Adams’ first task was trying to keep the majority of last seasons squad. The sales of Robert Snodgrass and Leroy Fer were inevitable, but by keeping Nathan Redmond, Alex Tettey and Wes Hoolahan he has a midfield packed with pace, power and creativity. Jos Hooiveld and Carlos Cueller, defenders with Premiership experience, alongside Michael Turner give a very solid look to the back line, but it is the two new forwards who are really catching the eye.
Signing Lewis Grabban and Cameron Jerome for less than half the price of Ross McCormack makes both financial and football sense. Having two goal scorers is the key to success in this league, it gives the manager options and takes the pressure off of the individual. Grabban started life at his new club like a machine, but as the goals started to slow down, Jerome has found form and Norwich are getting results courtesy of what is already looking like a deadly partnership.
The obvious quality is backed up by a gritty determination and desire to never give up, leading the Canaries to some hard earned points, most notably the incredible second half comeback away at Cardiff.
It is still very early in the season, but sitting pretty in second place, just a point behind Nottingham Forest, Norwich looked well equipped for a promotion push. There is a lot of football still to come, but if things continue how they have started, then Adams is on course to bring top flight football back to Carrow Road.