It’s Norwich City against the world so let’s stand strong and support Neil Adams at Fulham
- Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images
There was a definite air of something being irreparably broken at five o'clock last Saturday.
After a performance that had scraped the bottom of what had become a pretty deep barrel, Carrow Road erupted into the sort of scenes that marked the end of the Nigel Worthington era.
Missiles raining onto the pitch and confrontations between fans and players do nothing for the club's image, but they were the almost inevitable consequence of pent up anger and frustration which had finally fermented into the most poisonous of cocktails.
For those of us who regularly travel to away games Saturday's performance was painfully familiar, but to see such an anaemic showing in such a crucial home game was the final straw for many fans.
I am not going to hide from the fact that I backed Chris Hughton for longer than many people, and that even when I started to doubt the man himself I was fearful of the gamble inherent in a late change.
However, while I have my doubts that things can be turned around so late in the day, the fact is that relegation appeared inevitable last Saturday evening, leaving the board with no real choice.
However, while Hughton may have failed as a City manager his departure was as dignified as his tenure had been and I wish him well.
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Given the lateness of the decision to dispose of Hughton's services an internal appointment was inevitable.
Of course, there had already been people calling for Neil Adams to be given a chance, and now he has the advantage of having nothing to lose.
Succeed and he will be a hero (and perhaps see his appointment made permanent), fail and no one could justifiably criticise him over such a short tenure.
Like everyone else I have no idea how Adams will respond to the challenge of stepping up from youth football to the Premier League, but the clear passion that shone through in his inaugural press conference was good to hear.
The next step is to instil that passion into the squad that he chooses this afternoon, a squad whose make up is likely to offer some pointers into the real state of the dressing room at the end of the Hughton era.
It was interesting (and encouraging) that in an early interview Adams said: 'More than anything we have to have a bunch of players who will be prepared to go out and give everything for those supporters.' It will be an interesting selection.
While Hughton will justifiably carry the can for much of the failure to progress this season, the fact is that there are a number of players who have, for whatever reason, failed to deliver to the level expected of them. Until now the increasing levels of vitriol targeted at Hughton have given them a degree of immunity, but now there will be no hiding.
Of course, Fulham are the ultimate bogey team for City and have real quality in their squad, certainly too much for them to have struggled as much as they have. However, I think Adams will be less worried about facing a team who will try to attack rather than one looking to park the bus.
City will be fired up this afternoon and so will the fans. So much has been achieved at this club by a sense of unity in the face of the odds: us against the world.
That feeling has been missing for a long time but today there will be total conviction in the stands and on the pitch as well.
We have peered into deeper abysses than the one before us now and grown stronger for the experience. Now is the time for us to stand shoulder to shoulder and do so again.