Various news-lines are carrying not very detailed reports from some contretemps at Peterborough Station involving fans of Norwich, Ipswich and er, Newcastle United. It has been reported that seven people were arrested butb that more than 250 football fans were involved. Whether United’s name has been dragged into a story about some Ipswich and Norwich fellas having a tiff remains to be seen.
Any eye-witness accounts from our lot, just drop us a line and we’ll get your story out.
But back to the football. My apologies.
Steve Bruce’s reported quotes in The Mail suggests his immediate response to the shambles at Carrow Road was to exonerate the players from a lack of effort. However, given United ran less, tracked less, didn’t tackle and any of that stuff it would be largely unsustainable to argue the players did put the effort in. Bruce says:
‘I can’t go onto the pitch with them. But the one thing in management I’ve always tried to instil into my team is yes, we make mistakes, but I can’t forgive a performance where basically you don’t put your boots on. Unfortunately, it’s happened already, which is the second game in, but I’ll do all I can to make sure that changes. We’ve got to do the basics better, Whatever level you’re at, the first thing you have to do is do more than the opposition. I didn’t think we did that.’
Click here for Craig Hope’s full article.
As well as the effort levels, Bruce now appears to have questions about his own tactics (though put aside his infamous remarks about not having any or some such):
“I’ll have a look. I’ll have a look. Of what we’ve got available and the way we are, I do think we are better suited to playing it. Obviously, when you get beat today, it’s too early to look at it just like that straight away but make no bones about it, I’ll be looking at all sorts of stuff to make sure we’re better.”
Thank God for all kinds of stuff then.
Elsewhere, Matt Ritchie who was only a couple of weeks ago quoted as saying he didn’t understand supporter unrest (the penny might have dropped now) was quoted after Norwich:
“You guys, the fans and everyone will all have their own opinions. Mine is that we have stick together, continue to work hard, try to improve. The group is very similar to what we had last season. It may take a little bit of time but it is a long season and yes, we’d like to have got off the mark, but we didn’t. That’s certainly not the result we wanted but we have to keep working and obviously improve. Everyone has to be patient. We have new players in and there’s been a slight adjustment to the system. We’re only two games into the system. No, we didn’t play very well so we will look at that, find the reasons, work on it throughout the week and go again next week. The Premier League is relentless and of course, we have to be better than that”.
Look, we’ve just been beaten 3-1 so it’s obviously one of disappointment. But there is a determination in the squad to improve. Make no mistake about that.”
When asked about Rafa Ritchie said:
That’s over. It’s a new era now. We have to look forward not backwards. There’s a new manager come in, someone the players believe in and the club believes in. That’s important. We are working day in, day out to perform to our highest level and today we didn’t do that. We fell short. We certainly won’t just brush it to one side and move on to the next one. We will look at it, dissect it and make sure it doesn’t happen again.
Ritchie also commented on Lee Charnley’s new signing Joelinton:
He’s new to this league and like anyone who comes over here, he has to get used to it. He is finding out what it is all about but we’ve already seen in training, he has a lot of qualities and I am sure we’ll see them on the pitch before too long”