Norwich City had an all too familiar season for them crashing out of the Premier League in an abysmal fashion they will be looking to bounce straight back up. Norwich City fans have become far too used to the sight of their team rock bottom of the Premier League and getting used to losing week in and week out with very little improvement something that the fans have voiced their clear disapproval at but sadly was falling on deaf ears. Norwich city will be hoping to give back to the fans who have stayed loyal to the club despite the performance falling way below par.
Norwich City's pre season schedule has some eye-catching fixtures and perhaps those that are to the benefit to the local communities such as the match they played at a packed Aldiss Park in Dereham. Norwich breezed past them and won 4-0 quite comfortably and this match was primarily used to just get minutes in players legs as they had only been back in training 3 days prior to the game. Norwich had 10 key players missing as they were still all involved in their respective national teams' Nations league campaigns. Norwich played with a 1st half and 2nd half squads the first half squads and the 1st half shown us what we had seen towards the end of the season with Tony Springett looking lively creating opportunities for others and then also taking shots when he saw the opportunity but just after the 7th minute, he helped to start the attack which saw a returning Jordan Hugill put it past the Dereham keeper to make it 1-0. Not long before half time Springett crossed a ball into the box and Hugill put it in the back of the net to make it 2-0 at half time.
The 2nd half team came out of the blocks with a point to prove and just three minutes after Tom Dickson-Peters found himself through on goal took it round the keeper and put it in the back of the net to make it 3-0. Norwich City had several chances through some of their young players such as Saxon Earley and Flynn Clarke who both are trying to make their breakthrough into senior football. Then just before the full time whistle Jonathan Rowe was brought down in the box and Kieran Dowell stepped up to convert the penalty quite comfortably to make the full-time score 4-0 to the Canaries kicking off their pre-season with a win.
Canaries then flew to Salzburg for their annual pre-season camp in Grassau, Germany. They are using this to help prepare for the gruelling championship schedule and are hoping that they can correct the mistakes of last season. As you can imagine there is a lot of work that needs to be done and there are a few returning players who will be wanting to stake their claim to be in contention in the first team. Two players who stand out for me are Daniel Sinnani who spent the year out on loan at Huddersfield Town who reached the playoffs again and played a vital part in that. He will be hoping to stake a claim to become a more regular player for Norwich and Sam McCallum spent the year at QPR and when I saw glimpses of him, he had shown flashes of quality and also certain parts of his game which would help
Norwich improve more specifically being able to push high up the pitch but then also being able to track back and defend when needed. Towards the end of the week, they have a game against Bundesliga 2. Opponents SSV Jahn Regensburg which they will be able to see what tactics that they have worked on throughout the week. SSV Jahn Regensburg are a team who play 2nd division football in Germany and last year they finished 15th with only 18 teams in the league. This fixture will also then be used as the 1st test for the internationals who have just returned to training after their summer break.
City came back from Germany and recorded three wins in a row away to Kings Lynn Town of the National League North before heading out to France to dismantle Marseille and getting through a tricky test away to League 1 Cambridge United. City looked off the pace in the heat during their 0-2 win over Kings Lynn as Temmu Pukki picked up on a poor back pass before Tzolis doubled the Canaries lead with a low finish.
Norwich’s most impressive performance of pre-season came in Marseille as they picked apart a strong side who came second in Ligue 1 and reached the UEFA Conference League Semi-Final stages as well. Jacob Sorensen opened the scoring with a twenty-five yard screamer before in the second half preseason superstar Jordan Hugill headed home twice to give the Canaries a three nil win over one of the best teams in France. In the thirty-eight degrees heat in Cambridge, after a delayed flight home, City struggled in the first half and trailed at half time. They bounced back in the second half looking very strong with the introduction of Josh Sargent and Jordan Hugill as the latter went on to score twice after Liam Gibbs netted his first goal for the football club in the 1-3 win.
Norwich ended their pre-season in Scotland with a double header against Scottish Champions Celtic and a trip to Easter Road to face Hibernian which unfortunately for Dean Smith’s side ended in back-to-back defeats. City looked off the pace in both games but the strongest team was put out in the match against Celtic while the game at Easter Road was more of a rotated and rested eleven. Overall, the preseason was successful for the Canaries but you never know until the opening day how well a team is going to get on and for the Canaries they will be hoping that they can get three points at Cardiff City on the opening day of the season.