Norfolk Royal wrote:Lost that one in the first half really with goals from two corners and a penalty the result of a lethargic and mistake strewn first half hour. Great improvement in the second half and by the end Norwich were hanging on and wasting time. An equaliser would have been deserved in the circumstances.
Jaakola - 4 - Didn't have a lot to do but what he did do looked a bit haphazard, Was responsible for the penalty with an ugly hack on Maddison who was trying to round him. Some people around me were convinced Maddison had handled it to push the ball around Jaakola but would have to look at that again. Distribution was adequate but not convincing.
Gunter- 6 - Decent display from him. Got to the byline a couple of times in the second half and put in decent balls. Appeared frustrated that his 'runs' were not being picked up by the others. Couple of Norwich fans I spoke to thought he was our best player.
Blackett - 3.5 - Could have been sent off for a reckless two footed tackle and got the benefit of the doubt from the ref, probably rightly but it was touch and go. He ain't a left back, I'll leave it at that.
Moore - 5.5 - Always looks decent quality but surely two goals from corners is at least in part down to him as the main central defender.
Llori - 3 - Wasted possession, particularly one free kick, and looked dodgy on the ball.
Clement - 5 - Poor in first half but grew into the game. Lacks a bit of composure at times, and pace, but likes a tackle. I'd persist with him a bit on that showing as could become a crowd favourite but would have to up his game 20 per cent to do that.
Kelly - 6.5 - Arguably MOM for us until he was bizarrely substituted earlyish in the second half. He was about the only player who had a good first half and then I think laid on the goal for Smith with good cross behind the defence. Fans didn't like it when he was hoiked off chanting 'You don't know what you're doing' at Stam. if his substitution was down to an injury fair enough but inexplicable otherwise. That said, when he did go off and JVDB and Swift came on, we did look more compact in midfield and threatened more.
Aluko - 3 - Oh dear. When he receives the ball he always seems to have about three defenders around him. I think that is because he is too obvious and ponderous when he tries to evade the challenges rather than the opposition having him down as someone to mark closely. Just didn't add any value to our performance really.
Edwards - 4 - Didn't really notice him much but played his part in the second half improvement. At least I think he did as he was at least on the pitch at the time.
Barrow - 5.5 - I suspect that wasn't one of his better games but did look dangerous occasionally.
Smith - 5 - Looked out of his depth in the first half and it was a big ask for him today against Grant Hanley and Timm Klose, two experienced centre halfs. But took his goal well, a decent knack to have, and pulled the Norwich defence apart several times with good off the ball running. Again, worth persisting with.
Swift: - 6 - Player of skill and some decent passing patterns but perhaps should have driven forward a bit more considering the state of the game when he came on.
JVDB - 5 - One shocker of a ball to Gunter easily cut out by the Norwich defender when we were in a good position but appeared to exert some sort of control on the midfield after coming on.
Ref: The usual shocker, the most blatant being that surely he should have sent Jaakola off for his foul on Maddison. It clearly denied him a goalscoring opportunity. Did not add on enough time at the end for Norwich's frequent time wasting.
Fans: Not bad, about 450 to 500 I would say. When we got a goal back in the first half there was a decent chorus of 'How shit must you be, we've just scored a goal,' although negative chanting as a highlight is perhaps pushing it a bit. Few 'Stam out chants' but far from everybody chanting it. Gallows humour but largely supportive of the efforts the players made, particularly second half.
I usually like your posts but 8 could read past the misspelling of Ilori. It's an I. It's on the back of his shirt. C'mon.