The players and fans of Norwich City have been congratulated for their mature and reasonable response to abusive chants directed at them by the fans of Sheffield United during the weekend’s mid-table Championship fixture.
The East Anglian team who lost the fixture two-nil said on reflection, they accept that much of the chanting had been based on practical observations which have some basis in fact. ‘When they started shouting ‘Sheep, Sheep, Sheep Shaggers!’ I thought, here we go again, that tired old bucolic cliché’ reflected veteran striker Darren Huckerby. ‘But just as I was leaping to head away a corner, I thought, ‘Actually I suppose those living in predominantly rural areas like Norfolk are statistically more likely to engage in sexual relations with farm animals, even though the recorded instances of that sort of thing is remarkably rare these days. But in relation to other clubs in the Championship, yes, it is fair comment.’
During the second half the Norwich goalkeeper, David Marshall found himself performing directly in front of thousands of Sheffield United fans who soon began shouting ‘Who ate all the pies’. The Norwich goalie was philosophical about this chant. ‘It’s a rhetorical question, clearly,’ said the Scottish international after the game. ‘They were not expecting me to turn around and explain that the pies were in fact eaten by many different people, but that yes, I had perhaps eaten more than my fair share. But again, I thank them for pointing out that the pies were perhaps shared out slightly unequally.’
Seven minutes into the second half, Sheffield went one nil up, with a second goal sealing the tie five minutes later. At this point the Sheffield fans began a chorus of ‘You’re shit and you know you are.’
‘I think this is a no-brainer,’ admitted Glen Roeder, manager of Norwich City, said ‘Clearly we are shit; we are not in the top division and don’t look likely to get anywhere close anytime soon. And obviously we know we are shit because we do actually look at the table. But it’s always worth pointing these things out, because you should never assume anything. So once again, fair comment from the Yorkshire lads.’
Supporters of Sheffield United were reported to be irritated by the extremely reasonable response of the Norwich team, and a minority vowed to ‘give their fans a good kicking’, at the same fixture next season. A group of Norwich City fans chanted that the Northerners could ‘Come and have a go if you think you’re hard enough!’ Adding, ‘if however you do not think you are sufficiently robust, any sort of physical combat is probably best avoided.’