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Norwich City: The Undisputed Pride of Anglia

A description of how David Farke brought Norwich out of the Championship and made a name in Premier League football

Vinayak Manoj
Last updated: 18.09.2019
Norwich City: The Undisputed Pride of Anglia | Sports Social Blog

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Norwich City seem to be the centre of attention for football fans all over the world. The Canaries were the first team to end the near-perfect run of the Cityzens, inflicting their first loss since January. John Stones and Nicolas Otamendi’s shambolic defensive display gave fuel to the theory that Manchester City’s bid for a third successive Premier League Title will be derailed by continuous defensive lapses. The Canaries were missing 8 of its main players, but somehow managed to make up for it and successfully exploited the defensive errors the Cityzen’s made, beating the center-backs purely at pace. An extremely unexpected result left Guardiola’s side 5 points behind Liverpool. 


David Farke’s exceptional work with SV Lippstadt that he transformed on and off the pitch garnered attention all over the world. Thus, on May 25th, 2017 Farke was elected as the man to guide the Canaries back to their glory days. Norwich, having struggled to mount a crusade back to the Premier League, yearned for a leader like the German. It was a match made in heaven for both parties involved. Farke, who was pretty much anonymous to the English community was in charge of Borussia Dortmund II, the reserve team, as their head coach. His relationship and the ability to shape young talent made him the perfect choice for the Canaries. 



An air of apprehension encircled the club and its supporters alike. The club required a structural makeover going down to its foundations, if tier one football was to be achieved. Reshaping the club down to its core was always going to be a gargantuan task. The stakes were invariably high walking into the debut season as one might naturally presume. Farke’s appointment casted Norwich’s Sporting Director Stuart Webber under the microscope, since the changes he tried to implement at Carrow Road quite rightly resembled the ones he made at Huddersfield during their exceptional promotion expedition.


Webber and Farke knew exactly what they were doing, having penned down the team’s objectives before the season commenced. With the club sailing in a new direction and a completely different philosophy, Farke needed young players with the skillset and drive to materialize the objectives that their gaffer had envisioned for them. That’s what they found in the likes of Teemu Pukki, already having scored 6 goals, only behind Chelsea’s Tammy Abraham and City’s Sergio Aguero with 8 and 7 goals respectively. 


Farke after arriving at Norfolk made it painstakingly clear as to how he wanted his outfits to function. Holding possession and dominating the game. He likes his players to play the role of protagonists and dictate the pace of the game to control the outcomes. This is what all his sides have always displayed through their time on the pitch. The lack of quality players was what resulted in the Canaries' inability to progress to first division football. The wave of incoming players like goalkeeper Tim Krul, two wingers in Onel Hernandez and Emi Buendia and his mystery gem Teemu Pukki ensured a place in the Premier League. 


Farke’s tactical blueprint draws out a 4-2-3-1 formation which readjusts to 4-4-1-1 when the team needs to play with a defensive mindset. Farke encourages his players to build the play up from the back, giving his centre-backs an extremely crucial role, who split wide in order to create more space and spread the play out. The full-backs play higher up in relation to the centre-backs along the flanks to create more passing lanes and extending the width of the pitch. The positioning of the fullbacks in such a position comes with its own associated risks, if they were to lose possession in crucial areas would leave them vulnerable to counter-attacks. 


Farke works his midfielders hard. Expecting them to continuously dart up and down the pitch. To provide support in the defensive and offensive-third. Kenny McLean and Tom Trybull, the midfield powerhouses of the team play a crucial role in both, building the play up and keeping the ball out of their own net. 


As things stand, David Farke is looking to take the team to further successes like the one against the reigning champions, to which the Canary fans and club staff will forever be indebted and grateful.

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