Date:Monday March 2 2009
Vital QPR's Lenny367 takes a look at Norwich City ahead of tomorrow night's encounter at Loftus Road.
FACTS AND FIGURES
Founded: 17th June 1902
Nickname: The Canaries
Ground: Carrow Road - 26,034
Manager: Bryan Gunn
League Cup Winners 1962, 1985
League Cup Runners Up - 1973, 1975
Division Two Champions - 1972, 1986, 2004
Division Three South Champions - 1934
Record Attendance: 43,984 v Leicester City (FA Cup 6th Round, 1963)
Record victory: 10-2 v Coventry City (Third Division South, 1930)
Record defeat: 2 - 10 v Notts County (Southern League, 1908)
Record Buy: Robert Earnshaw - £3,500,000 from W.B.A
Record Sale: Dean Ashton - £7,250,000 to West Ham
Record Appearances: Ron Ashman - 592
Record Goals: Johnny Gavin - 122
The start of 2000 saw Norwich City a long long way from the heights they reached in the nineties. The team that were once top of the Premier League for most of the 92/93 season only to finish third, and then in '94 became the only team to beat Bayern Munich in their own backyard in European competition, were in danger of sliding down into the 3rd tier of English football.
The major shareholding partnership of Delia Smith and Michael Wynn Jones raised a few eyebrows when they appointed Nigel Worthington as manager at the start of the 2000/01 season as his previous appointment at Blackpool left the Tangerine fans rejoicing at his departure.
However, in his first season he saved the club from relegation and the following season led his team to the play off finals. The day ended in heartbreak for the Canaries as firstly in second half injury-time, Birmingham skipper Jeff Kenna saved an almost certain goal as he intercepted substitute Alex Notman's cross just ahead of Iwan Roberts.
Two minutes into extra time Roberts scored but Birmingham hit back to equalize soon after. The game went to penalties which saw Birmingham win and move into the Premiership.
Two years later the sadness turned to joy as, after a slow start to the season, Worthington led his team back into the premiership leaving W.B.A trailing eight points behind.
Many have said that the return to Norwich of Darren Huckerby for a fee of £750,000 paid to Manchester City was key to the promotion season, but the defence was also well marshalled by both Malky McKay and a young Robert Green.
The return to the top flight saw a lot of pre season activity at Norwich. McKay went to West Ham and among others Worthington splashed out on Gary Doherty, Dean Ashton and Darren Ward.
The season was an unhappy one and Norwich struggled all the way through the campaign despite a 2-0 victory over ManchesterUnited, and were duly relegated back into the Championship.
Hopes of bouncing straight back soon vanished into the East Anglian sky and City continued their run of mediocre form. A poor start to the 06/07 season saw Worthington clear his desk and make way for former City favourite and West Ham assistant manager Peter Grant.
Rather than improve the situation City continued to struggle and despite a whole host of players coming and going the club continued to slide down the table. A 1-0 defeat in front of the Sky TV cameras at Loftus Road proved to be the final straw and Grant was quickly replaced by Glen Roeder.
Roeder`s brief was simple: To keep Norwich in the Championship. He just about managed to complete this task with just one game to spare following a 3-0 victory over The R`s at Carrow Road.
At the start of this season hopes were high that Roeder would continue his work and lead City up the Championship table. Many eyebrows were raised however when 28 players left the club and a further 28 were brought in.
Of the 28 in 14 were on loan and many supporters and members of the local press voiced their concern over the balance of the squad. These concerns were shown to be reasonable as Norwich continued to struggle at the wrong end of the table and in January of this year Roeder was relieved of his duties and replaced by former goalkeeping favourite Bryan Gunn.
Gunn`s first game in charge saw Norwich race into a two goal half time lead over fellow strugglers Southampton only to concede 2 second half goals to end up sharing the points. An away trip to struggling Doncaster Rovers followed and saw the Canaries comeback from an early set back to draw 1-1.
This was followed by an impressive 3-3 draw at leaders Wolves, but despite the initial boost Norwich continue to struggle in the relegation zone, mainly due to a run of 10 games without a win, the last victory coming against bottom club Charlton.
Many thanks to Lenny367
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Date:Monday March 2 2009
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