Korey's been a real star

Neil AdamsI think the biggest compliment anyone can pay Korey Smith this season is to say that he has performed throughout the whole campaign with a maturity that has belied his tender years.Neil Adams

I think the biggest compliment anyone can pay Korey Smith this season is to say that he has performed throughout the whole campaign with a maturity that has belied his tender years.

For someone so young to not only force his way into the team on merit and be good enough to actually retain his place in the side, and then play to an incredibly high standard more often than not as well takes some doing.

Watching him perform without any fear whatever on a matchday and cover the amount of ground he does, it's easy to forget that he is only 19 years old.

He was one of very few Norwich players who impressed during that final day of the campaign at The Valley last season, and it would have been in that game when most people saw just what he was all about.

And he hasn't been fazed in the slightest this term, just as he wasn't in the most difficult circumstances on the day City were relegated.

In fact you sense that he has relished the opportunity to bully and dominate the many senior professionals he has come up against.

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Granted, there have been a handful of games in which he hasn't quite lived up to his own high standards, but to win a League One Championship winners medal in his first full season in the first team has been a hugely impressive achievement and richly deserved.

t Good to see that three City players made it into the PFA League One team of the season last Sunday.

Grant Holt, Wes Hoolahan and Gary Doherty each fully deserve to be honoured, as all three have been magnificent this season and achieved a high level of consistency with their performances week in week out. There is a good case for arguing that even more Norwich players deserved to be included, but I can't for the life of me figure out how one man in particular hasn't made it into the team - Fraser Forster.

Fair do's. Kelvin Davis has done well between the sticks for Southampton this season and good luck to him for picking up the award.

But if there has been a better 'keeper over the course of the campaign; someone who has made more important saves at vital times in crucial matches, or better saves from a technical aspect than some that Forster has made, I certainly haven't seen him.


With everything now being done and dusted as far as this season is concerned, naturally the option to give one or two fringe players a run out in the first team is now available to Paul Lambert.

Of course Norwich still have a duty to all the other clubs in the division to give it their best shot in these final two games, and I'm sure that will be at the forefront of his mind.

But the luxury of chopping and changing the side in terms of personnel and/or formation is now available to the City boss if he so wishes.

He has also the chance to have a look at any of the youngsters to see how they can cope at first team level if he wants to. And he can even tinker with a few things that under normal circumstances might normally only be given a test-run on the training ground if he likes.

The thing is, players always want to play, regardless of if there is no significance attached to the result. And I've no doubt that all of the regular first teamers would still want to play in these last two matches if given the choice.

Of course anyone carrying even the slightest of knocks isn't going to be risked when results aren't paramount anymore, but when there are contracts to be played for and places to cement in the team for next season, every game is another opportunity for you to impress the boss and do yourself a few favours.

Accordingly, no one will probably want to be given a breather for these last two games if they're being honest -regardless of how well they've played this season.


What was the funniest moment from last Saturday's game?

No, not the moment when the referee almost tore a cartilage in his knee when he tried to stamp on one of those beachballs that had blown on to the pitch thinking it was a just a normal balloon, but an incident when some of the fans from the snakepit decided to stage a mini pitch invasion at the final whistle.

For the record I don't think there was much to get too wound up about, even though the supporters were asked to stay off the pitch, because once they had been asked over the PA system to return to their seats so that the team could complete a lap of honour, everyone duly obliged without any fuss.

But the reaction of one particular fan when he spotted a policeman walking towards him filming everything with a camcorder was priceless.

He immediately pulled his Norwich shirt up above his nose and turned his back towards the policeman in order that his identity couldn't be captured on film….only to reveal his name on the back of it.

Doh! It shouldn't be too hard to trace him if needs be!

What was my biggest bugbear from last week? The pathetic lack of coverage of City's title-winning achievement in the national media. It hardly got a mention in some quarters.

Oh there was plenty of coverage of Newcastle's Championship-winning celebrations alright, and plenty of mentions on the TV, radio and in the Sunday newspapers regarding the likes of West Brom and Notts County being promoted.

Even Stevenage Borough enjoyed a full page feature in one of the tabloids for their Blue Square Premier triumph for heaven's sake.

But as for Norwich wrapping the League One title up at a canter? Hardly anything at all. Precious few mentions and hardly any pictures whatsoever.

It's just another reason to buy local and pick up your copy of the Evening News on a regular basis.