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The thing that really set City apart from everyone else last season was that when they were really under pressure to produce a result they delivered.

Inevitably, and quite rightly, much that has been written about City's Goodison Park renaissance has centred around the return of Christoph Zimmermann, but it's important to salute two squad players who both made significant contributions.

Anyone who isn't a fan of VAR won't feel very comforted by the outcome of last week's meeting between officials of the Premier League clubs and Professional Game Match Officials Limited (PGMOL), the body overseeing it.

The last few weeks have felt like an accelerating downward spiral, but the game against Watford was particularly soul destroying.

It would be impossible to talk about last week's game without mentioning VAR, although it had little to do with the result.

The sort of footballer that fans come to idolise tends to have a bit of glamour about him; an acrobatic goalkeeper perhaps, or a prolific goalscorer or silky midfielder.

Much as I usually rail against them, for once I've actually found an international break enjoyable rather than frustrating.

At some point between 3pm and 5pm on October 5, I came to a realisation.

Shortly after joining Preston, Alex Neil told the Guardian: "A learning curve for me was getting to the Premier League with Norwich where I felt at times that we had to adjust our approach. Looking back, I would never do that again - I would carry on with the style that I've adopted. Now, I've got the courage of my convictions in terms of how I want my teams to play."

The Premier League is utterly unforgiving and if you're not at the races from the very start of a game you're going to struggle. It's a hard but important lesson that City need to learn.

It's difficult not to conclude that Daniel Farke spent the summer smashing mirrors and walking under ladders.

This hasn't been a week that Daniel Farke will look back on with much fondness.

While it hardly seems five minutes since that glorious afternoon at Villa Park, the summer's transfer dealings suggest that, outside the money-bloated world of the Premier League at least, there is real change going on in the game, with Norwich City the main catalysts.

Norwich City never do it the easy way. In spite of utterly dominating Blackburn last Saturday, the fact that they were never able to kill the game off meant that there was no chance to relax and enjoy the experience until Andy Madley blew that final whistle.

I really have no idea how I feel at the moment.

I'm really not sure how much more of this I can take. The last three games have been an absolute roller-coaster of emotions; each of them ending as a draw, but all provoking very different reactions.

When Stuart Webber talks about Emi Buendia he often refers to his footballing intelligence and, despite the rush of blood that resulted in his red card, the game against QPR showcased two prime examples of that.

It's slightly worrying that with seven games still to go I've already run out of superlatives for Daniel Farke and his young side.

This year's Player of the Season competition is going to be one of the most interesting for some time.

Last week I talked about City's discipline, and they needed every ounce of it at the New York Stadium in a windy and apparently post-apocalyptic Rotherham judging by the almost universal absence of people or functioning shops in the town centre. It is indeed grim up north.

Max Aarons

A lot of words have been used to describe City's football this season; fluid, flowing, sexy, exhilarating to name but a few, but one which isn't often mentioned is perhaps the most important; disciplined.

Daniel Farke

At Carrow Road in early December, City made a meal of beating Bolton, surrendering a two-goal lead and only claiming the points through a Teemu Pukki strike late in injury time.

Ben Godfrey

I'm not sure that too many of us would have been too surprised by Wednesday night's performance at Preston.

Ben Godfrey

I've had some great moments watching City over the years, but Saturday evening was right up there with the best.

While Chris Wilder has assumed the role of pantomime villain for many City fans it's only fair to give him credit for the development of a team which resembles the footballing equivalent of a cockroach in terms of their apparent indestructability.

Daniel Farke

It's scarcely more than a year since Mario Vrancic was widely derided as too slow and insufficiently physical to cut it in the Championship and Christoph Zimmermann was written off as a German fourth division defender - yet on Friday night both were absolutely central to City's stunning statement of intent.

Mario Vrancic

When I was growing up the FA Cup was something special, culminating in the day of the final when for just once in the year, TV would devote several hours to the build-up with the game itself the highlight of the football calendar.

Ben Godfrey

Well, at least I now know that my heart must still be in decent shape.

Max Aarons

Getting a result without playing well is key to any promotion push, so while it was disappointing to see City have to come from behind having led, albeit somewhat undeservedly, at Ashton Gate, the fact that they garnered a point from a game they could so easily have lost is a real positive.

Max Aarons

The last couple of months have seen those who write about Norwich City struggling to find new words to describe their stylish football, but one has been noticeable by its absence: ruthless.

Max Aarons

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