A throwback to the past: What happened the last 3 times Norwich City secured promotion to the Premier League
The expectations amongst the fans at Carrow Road are bound to rise and cross all limits, as Norwich City get ready to compete in the 2019-20 season of the Premier League following a campaign of resounding success in the Championship the last term.
The Canaries secured automatic promotion to the Premier League as the winners of the Championship, thus putting an end to their three-year exile from the top-flight.
In fact, Daniel Farke’s side played one of the most attractive brands of football in the second-tier of English football last season, with the former manager of Borussia Dortmund’s reserves managing to get the Canaries back to the Premier League with a clear and distinct identity of their own.
A throwback to the recent past reveals that this is the first time since 2003-04 that Norwich City have managed to secure promotion to the Premier League as the winners of the Championship.
The last time that the Canaries had managed to achieve a similar feat was 16 years ago under the stewardship of Nigel Worthington, although their stay in the top-flight at that time didn’t last for more than a season.
Fellow newcomers Aston Villa have already spent quite a lot in the transfer market following their return to the top-flight but Farke isn’t expected to splash the cash to such an extent this time around, given the club’s financial constraints.
That, however, is unlikely to bother the Canaries too much, considering how they managed to excel in the Championship with some shrewd low-budget signings.
Norwich have taken steps to strengthen their ranks, though, with the Canaries completing a loan deal for Man City starlet Partick Roberts, while Swiss striker Josip Drmic has also made his move to Carrow Road on a free transfer this summer.
There is still a lot of time to go before the transfer deadline in August, meaning that the fans have every reason to anticipate a few more new arrivals prior to the start of the upcoming Premier League season.
Leaving all those transfer talks aside, let us turn the pages of the history book and look at what happened the last three times that Norwich City got promoted to the Premier League.
Now, that could send a chill down the spines of most of the fans at Carrow Road, given that the Premier League hasn’t necessarily proved to be a happy hunting ground for the Canaries in the recent past.
Nevertheless, it is certainly worthwhile to take a walk down the memory lanes, as the Canaries prepare themselves for a return to the mainstream of English football.
Manager: Nigel Worthington
The 2003-04 season was the last time that Norwich made it to the Premier League as the winners of the Championship but their results in the top-flight in the following campaign were less than impressive.
A dismal run in the opening stages of the season saw them go winless until mid-November before a 2-1 victory over Southampton at home gave the fans something to cheer about.
The Canaries managed to register only two victories until the end of December, with the other positive result being a 3-2 victory over Bolton Wanderers, once again on home soil.
A 3-2 victory over West Brom was followed by another unimpressive losing streak of 5 games before a sudden upturn of form in April breathed life into their faltering campaign.
Norwich registered victories over the likes of Man United, Charlton, Newcastle United and Birmingham City in the latter stages of the season and those impressive results put them in pole position to beat the drop.
However, a shocking 6-0 defeat away at Fulham in the final game of the campaign sealed their fate and the Canaries returned back to the Championship with tails between their legs, notably without winning a single game away from home all season.
A ninth-place finish in the Championship in the 2005-06 season followed by a poor start to the 2006-07 campaign saw the club pull the trigger on Nigel Worthington, with former player Peter Grant taking charge of the Canaries in October 2006.
2. 2011-12 to 2013-14
Managers: Paul Lambert and Chris Hughton
Norwich were stuttering in League One when Paul Lambert took charge in the summer of 2009 and led the Canaries to promotion to the Championship after just a single season in the third-tier.
Things got even better for them in the 2010-11 season when Norwich, under Lambert, secured promotion to the Premier League, and in doing so, became the first team since Man City in 2000 to achieve the feat of back-to-back promotions from the third-tier to the top-flight.
Grant Holt, who had previously spearheaded the Canaries surge for promotion in the Championship with 21 goals, stepped up for his club in the Premier League and netted 15 times, as Norwich managed a respectable 12th-place finish in the 2011-12 season.
A tally of 12 wins and 11 draws was next to remarkable for a team that was tottering in League One just a couple of years back.
Chris Hughton replaced Lambert at the helm of affairs ahead of the 2012-13 season but the new manager was greeted with a heavy 5-0 defeat at the hands of Fulham in his very first game.
Norwich made the headlines with the signings of Sebastien Bassong and Alex Tettey, with both the players going on to play a key role for the Canaries in the Premier League.
Norwich failed to register even a single victory in their first seven league games, with 4 of them ending in defeats.
Things, however, improved gradually and Hughton managed to guide the Canaries to an 11th-place finish in the Premier League, which was their best ever finish in the top-flight since finishing third way back in 1992.
Norwich’s third season on their return to the top-flight started with a 2-2 draw against Everton at home but it wasn’t long before things started to go downhill for the Canaries and manager Chris Hughton.
Heavy defeats at the hands of Arsenal and Man City away from home enraged most of the fans at Carrow Road before a 3-1 comeback win over West Ham sparked a mini-resurgence.
However, Norwich failed to replicate the performances that they had put together in their first two seasons in the top-flight and it became more and more apparent that their stay in the Premier League was slowly but surely coming to an end. A 1-0 defeat at the hands of West Brom early in April saw the club hierarchy pull the trigger on Hughton, with Neil Adams being named as his replacement.
That call probably came way too late, as five consecutive defeats towards the end of the season saw the Canaries finish a disappointing 18th on the table and return to the Championship.
Although Norwich enjoyed a lot of success in their first two seasons in the Premier League, their honeymoon turned sour all of a sudden in the 2013-14 campaign, thus marking the end of the club’s most successful spell in the top-flight in recent times.
Manager: Alex Neil
Neil Adams’ reign as the manager at Carrow Road didn’t last long and then Hamilton Academical manager Alex Neil was appointed at the helm of affairs in the second half of the 2014-15 season in the Championship.
The arrival of Neil marked an upturn of form and Norwich eventually secured immediate promotion to the Premier League with a 2-0 victory over Middlesbrough in the playoff final, having initially managed a third-place finish in the league.
The start of the 2015-16 season was marked by the arrival of a few quality players like Youssouf Mulumbu, Graham Dorrans and Robbie Brady and Norwich made a decent start to the campaign, despite losing 3-1 to Crystal Palace in their opening fixture.
The Canaries registered 2 wins and 3 draws in their first seven league games before things fell apart with four consecutive defeats at the hands of Leicester City, Newcastle, West Brom and Man City.
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Norwich came back from the dead to register a surprise 2-0 victory over Man United at Old Trafford but a winless streak of 10 games (including 8 defeats) starting from mid-January to mid-April sealed their fate, as the Canaries finished second-bottom in the Premier League and suffered relegation to the Championship once again.
“Could be a turning point”, “More please”: Several Tottenham fans joyful after huge 5-0 win vs Red Star + Match report
Tottenham fans react to the emphatic 5-0 win vs Red Star Belgrade
Tottenham romped home with an emphatic 5-0 victory over Red Star Belgrade on Matchday 3 of the UEFA Champions League, as Mauricio Pochettino’s side registered their first victory in the group stages of the tournament.
Having drawn 2-2 against Olympiacos before suffering an ignominious 7-2 defeat at the hands of Bayern Munich on Matchday 2, the Lilywhites came into the game knowing that they had to grab all three points to stay in the hunt for qualification from Group B and the hosts finally returned to winning ways after three games in all competitions.
Braces from Harry Kane and Son Heung-min, and a solitary strike from Erik Lamela ensured that the fans finally had something to cheer about following a woeful recent run of results as Spurs managed to breathe some life into their tottering European campaign.
Despite having picked up a shock 3-1 victory over Olympiacos on Matchday 2, Red Star Belgrade were clearly the underdogs heading into the away fixture against Tottenham and it didn’t take long for the Premier League giants to break the deadlock.
Kane headed it in from Lamela’s corner to give Spurs the lead just nine minutes into the game but that was just the beginning of a breathtaking display from the home side, something that has been an anomaly rather than a norm since the start of the season.
Lamela was once again the provider for the second goal as the Argentine got in behind the defence and turned his man before delivering an inch-perfect cross from the outside of his left boot for Son to make it 2-0.
Son almost immediately returned the favour back to Lamela, who had a golden chance to grab a third goal for the hosts, only for Milan Borjan to deny him with a fine save. Red Star had a rare sight of goal when Rajiv van La Parra called Paulo Gazzaniga into action with a header shortly after.
However, the visitors were soon the architects of their own downfall when their sudden loss of possession in the midfield allowed Tanguy Ndombele to embark on a driving run and the Frenchman set up Son for his second of the night and Spurs’ third just before the interval.
With Spurs leading 3-0 at half-time, the game looked like a done and dusted affair and the Lilywhites continued to toy with their opponents after the restart.
Kane and Son set up Lamela for a couple of very presentable chances early in the second half before the Argentine finally grabbed a goal from Serge Aurier’s assist just before the hour mark.
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Lamela came close to bagging his second of the night just moments later while Son also narrowly missed the target but Kane made it 5-0 at the 72nd-minute mark with a precise right-footed finish, Ndombele chipping in with his second assist of the game.
In the end, it was probably relief more than joy for Pochettino but the thumping victory was definitely a sight for sore eyes to savour and a massive confidence-booster, nonetheless.
Here’s how some of the Tottenham fans reacted to the 5-0 victory:-
“World-class performance”: Some Man City fans on cloud nine after emphatic 5-1 win over Atalanta + Match report
UEFA Champions League Match Report: Man City 5-1 Atalanta
Man City stormed 5-1 past Italian outfit Atalanta in their Group C encounter on Matchday 3 of the UEFA Champions League, as Pep Guardiola’s side registered their third consecutive victory in the group stage of the competition to take a step closer to qualification.
Ruslan Malinovskyi’s opener from the penalty spot was cancelled out by Sergio Aguero’s first-half brace before a quickfire hat-trick from Raheem Sterling after the interval ensured that the Citizens absolutely demolished their opposition on the night to claim all three points in an emphatic manner.
Guardiola opted for a change in formation from a 4-3-3 to a 4-2-3-1, with Rodri and Fernandinho playing as the makeshift pairing at the heart of the defence.
Gundogan and De Bruyne formed the pivot in the midfield while Phil Foden started in the No.10 role with Mahrez and Sterling playing out wide on either side to complement Aguero up top.
Atalanta had been written off completely by many prior to the start of the game but the Serie A side showed strong signs of promise in the early stages of the game and found a surprise breakthrough much against the run of play.
Fernandinho brought Josip Ilicic down at the edge of the box and Malinovskyi stepped up from twelve yards to convert the resultant penalty, sending Ederson the wrong way to make it 1-0 just before the half-hour mark.
City, though, had been regarded as the strong favourites in the clash and it wasn’t long before the Premier League giants stamped their authority. Sterling’s excellent lobbed pass from the edge of the box had all the guile in the world to outwit the Atalanta backline and Aguero was at the right place to level the scores in the 34th minute.
The hosts’ dominance continued to reign supreme and Sterling’s lung-busting run drew a foul from Andrea Masiello inside the box as Aguero coolly stepped up to convert the penalty and put City 2-1 ahead before the interval.
The second half was nothing but one-way traffic and after playing a key role in each of Aguero’s first-half goals, Sterling was simply unstoppable after the restart.
Foden set him up for an easy finish to make the scoreline 3-1 before a sumptuous through ball from Gundogan set the England international free down the left side, allowing him to cut inside and get the home crowd off their feet with a clinical finish.
The game looked dead and buried but Man City were apparently keen to inflict more pain on the Italians as Mahrez set up Sterling for his hat-trick in the 69th minute. The winger had a glorious opportunity to grab a sixth goal for the hosts but it was a night to remember for him, nevertheless.
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There was a rare blemish for the Citizens when Foden was given the marching orders for a second bookable offence but Pep Guardiola will definitely be a pleased man after his team completely tore the visitors to pieces on Tuesday night.
Here’s how some of the joyous Man City fans reacted to the 5-1 victory in the Champions League:-
[Image] Man United vs Arsenal: Star-studded combined XI featuring 4 Red Devils and 7 Gunners
Man United vs Arsenal: Combined XI featuring 4 Red Devils and 7 Gunners
After a round of EFL Cup fixtures, Premier League action is set to return this weekend with plenty of thrills and spills and the high-octane clash between Man United and Arsenal on Monday night is undoubtedly going to be one of the main attractions of matchweek 7.
Both the teams won their EFL Cup fixtures, with Arsenal handing Nottingham Forest a 5-0 drubbing and Man United somehow edging past a lowly Rochdale in the penalty shootout.
Arsenal are currently placed 4th in the Premier League standings after a 3-2 victory over Aston Villa last week and the fans will be expecting the Gunners to continue their winning run, while Man United will have their work cut out away from home after a 2-0 defeat at the hands of West Ham last week.
Bernd Leno (GK)
The German has proven his worth between the sticks on numerous occasions with some fine saves this season and he certainly deserves the nod over de Gea, who has been a bit inconsistent.
Aaron Wan-Bissaka (RB)
The youngster has proven himself to be an excellent addition to Man United’s backline and it is a no-brainer that he has fared way better than Maitland-Niles in that position.
Harry Maguire (CB)
The England international has added a lot of steel to United’s backline following his big-money move from Leicester City earlier in the summer. One of the best centre-backs in the Premier League, he definitely deserves a place ahead of the error-prone David Luiz in the elite combined line-up.
The Greek international has hardly been at his best but Victor Lindelof too, has been equally lacklustre and there isn’t really a lot to choose between them so far this term.
Kieran Tierney (LB)
The Scotsman made his first start for the Gunners since his move from Celtic back in August and the fans will be expecting him to play a big part on Monday if he starts.
Matteo Guendouzi (CDM)
The Frenchman has arguably been Arsenal’s most influential presence in the middle of the park with his excellent all-round game, leapfrogging Fred, Matic, Xhaka and Torreira on the performance charts.
Scott McTominay (CDM)
The youngster has really come of age for United this term and his combative and energetic displays in the middle of the park have caught the eye amidst a lot of mediocrity from his teammates, including star man Paul Pogba.
Nicolas Pepe (RW)
The Ivorian is currently on high spirits after bagging his first goal for Arsenal against Aston Villa last week and though he hasn’t done anything spectacular yet, there is hardly a better player from either team in that role.
Daniel James (LW)
The former Swansea City starlet has taken the Premier League by storm this season and he will be United’s best bet to find the net on Monday.
Dani Ceballos (CAM)
The Spaniard has shown a lot of promise in that No.10 role for the Gunners and he definitely deserves the nod ahead of big names like Juan Mata and Mesut Ozil.
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Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (ST)
The Gabonese international has become a nemesis for the defenders in the Premier League and with an impressive tally 6 goals in 6 league outings this season, Arsenal will look up to him to propel them to a victory over rivals United on Monday.
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