Play-offs will be out of reach if Norwich City don't make a change soon

PUBLISHED: 07:00 30 December 2016

Iwan Roberts believes its time for Alex Neil to leave Norwich City. 
Picture by Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

Iwan Roberts believes its time for Alex Neil to leave Norwich City. Picture by Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

©Focus Images Limited +447814 482222

The Boxing Day defeat against Reading saw us reach the halfway point of a very poor season so far for Norwich City.

Defeat against the Royals saw Norwich drop to 12th place in the Championship and left the majority of the fans calling on the board of directors to act before it’s too late and sack Alex Neil.

It’s admirable that Delia Smith and Michael Wynn Jones and their fellow board members – as well as chief executive Jez Moxey in his statement on Wednesday – have shown Alex so much faith and loyalty during this shocking run.

However, I now think that action needs to be taken before the play-off positions become unreachable and the club’s season is over before we reach the end of February.

It doesn’t look like lessons have been learned with the way the club stuck with under-fire Chris Hughton when he’d lost the fans and the atmosphere down at Carrow Road was poisonous. It is now looking like the fans, after many weeks of mediocrity, have finally lost patience with the manager.

The club kept faith with Hughton for far too long and by the time they sacked him, with just five games to go, it was far too late and City were relegated.

When Neil Adams was sacked they had 37 points from 24 games. Even if Norwich beat Brentford tomorrow they’ll be a point short of that tally.

I can’t see Alex Neil resigning; he’s a proud man and is on a big contract.

He would lose the right to a big pay-off if he walked, but if he was sacked by the powers that be, he would be entitled to every penny of the remainder of his contract.

I’ve heard people say there’s no point in getting rid of the manager – who would come in?

In my opinion that’s not an excuse not to fire an under-performing manager who doesn’t seem to be able to motivate a group of players like he did when he first arrived at the football club.

He’s simply lost his spark and the players are not responding to him.

In my opinion I think the board should act now and relieve Alex of his duties for his own sake as much as for Norwich City’s.

The man is suffering and needs to move on to a new chapter and challenge in his life.

That great play-off final day at Wembley back in May 2015 won him a bit of time, but he can’t live off that forever, especially after relegation last season.

Kaikai could be a danger to Canaries

I spent Boxing Day at Griffin Park watching Brentford play Cardiff and even though the Bees were so bad they were booed off at the break by their own fans, Dean Smith’s men were outstanding in the second half and thoroughly deserved the 2-2 draw.

The game was going Cardiff’s way until young Sullay Kaikai was introduced by Brentford and boy was I impressed with him – I’ll be shocked if he doesn’t start against Norwich tomorrow evening. He scored both Brentford’s goals, the first of which was one of the best strikes I’ve witnessed this season, but his movement and pace was also very impressive and will ask all sorts of questions of the lacklustre Norwich defence.

Having been hammered 5-0 by Norwich at the beginning of the month, Brentford will really be looking for revenge and if they win tomorrow they will be just a point behind the Canaries.

I wasn’t surprised when Swansea parted company with manager Bob Bradley after just 11 games in charge, but I did have a lot of sympathy with him. He should never have been given the job in the first place and the only reason he was is because of the new American owners at The Liberty. His record wasn’t great, it was shocking, losing seven of his 11 games and his team conceded three or more goals in eight games.

• I’d like to take this opportunity to wish all of you a very happy new year and let’s all hope City have what it takes to turn the season around.

Most Read

Most Read

Latest from the Norwich Evening News

Hot Jobs

Show Job Lists