It’s a relegation six-pointer and this time, there’s an added twist. With just five games left to play, Norwich City took drastic action last weekend, firing Chris Hughton following the 1-0 defeat to fellow strugglers West Bromwich Albion. Now it’s up to Neil Adams to lift the Canaries to safety, arresting a poor run of form that’s seen Norwich pick up just one win in six matches.
But can the former Academy coach really have all that much of an impact in the final five games of the season?
Felix Magath, who was appointed Fulham manager with just twelve games left of the season, doesn’t believe that Adams can have that much of an effect on Norwich’s tactics. He does believe, however, that the new coach will be able to change the players’ attitudes – and that change could be significant.
When asked about the potential changes the new Canaries’ boss might bring about in his first match in charge, Magath said, “Only the atmosphere. He cannot change the tactics. But that’s not important. He can change the atmosphere and that will help the players. In one game you don’t make players better tactically but with the right mood they are able to fight and they are able to change the game. That makes it more difficult for us to win on Saturday.”
And Fulham desperately need that win at Craven Cottage. Their 2-1 victory at Aston Villa last weekend may have lifted them into 18th, but the Whites are still five points from safety. Since it’s Norwich that are currently closest to the drop, a Fulham win could very well see them into the Premier League next season – especially since the Canaries’ final four matches are against Liverpool, Manchester United, Chelsea and Arsenal…a run-in that just might see Norwich sent down.