Norwich City Football Club - History & Notable Players

Norwich City FC

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  • Name: Norwich City Football Club

  • Nickname: The Canaries

  • Founded: 1902

  • Ground: Carrow Road

  • Ground capacity: 27,244

Carrow Road Stadium

Picture of Steam locomotive nameplate above pitch entrance
  • Tenants: Norwich City 1935 - present
  • Capacity: 27,244 - Opened: 1935

Norwich City F.C. played at Newmarket Road from 1902 to 1908, with a record attendance of 10,366 in a match against Sheffield Wednesday in a second round FA Cup match in 1908. Following a dispute over the conditions of renting Newmarket Road, the club moved to a new home in 1908, a converted disused chalk pit in Rosary Road, Norwich. The new ground became known as "The Nest".

By the 1930s, the ground capacity was proving insufficient for the growing crowds: The Nest's largest crowd was 25,037 in the 1934–35 FA Cup. The physical limitations of the site of The Nest meant that expansion was not possible, and there were safety problems with the existing structures. The club began looking for alternative accommodation in 1926, but the final straw was "the collapse of part of the pitch [which] ... sank up to 30 feet in one corner when the old chalk workings gave way". An attempt to patch up the problem with railway sleepers and soil failed to impress The Football Association, who wrote to the club on 15 May 1935, "saying The Nest was no longer suitable for large crowds and measures must be taken".

The club's dilemma was acute: the FA no longer approved of large crowds at The Nest, but the new season was just weeks away. About half a mile south of The Nest, they found a new site, the home of the Boulton Paul Sports Ground in Carrow Road, which, on 1 June 1935, the club purchased on a 20-year lease, from its owners J & J Colman.

Stadium's name and initial construction history
The new stadium took its name from the street, which encloses the ground on three sides, the fourth being the River Wensum. In 1800, John Ridges, owner of the Carrow Abbey Estate and the land opposite on the banks of the Wensum in Thorpe Hamlet, "granted permission for a proposed road access across his grounds to Carrow". By 1811, surgeon Philip M. Martineau owned the Carrow Abbey Estate and the adjacent Thorpe land.

Carrow Hill Road was created on his Carrow Abbey Estate, to provide some work for the poor in the community. The road linked Martineau's Bracondale Estate to Carrow Toll Bridge, installed in 1810. The name "Carrow" originally refers to the former Carrow Abbey that once stood on the riverside. Norwich Railway Co. had acquired the land in Thorpe around Carrow Road by the 1840s and by 1850, the future site of the stadium belonged to the firm of J.J. Colman. In 1935, Colman's offered the 20 year leasehold to Norwich F.C. and construction on the new stadium began swiftly: tenders were issued on the day the site was purchased and just ten days later, on 11 June, work began.

Initial materials were sourced by demolishing the former "Chicken Run" section of The Nest, with the rubble dumped as a bank at the river end of the new ground. Thereafter, work proceeded extremely quickly and by "17 August most of the stands and terraces had been completed". Finally, after just 82 days, "on 31 August Carrow Road football ground was opened for the Second Division match v West Ham United."

Norwich won the game 4–3; the attendance was 29,779, which set a new record crowd for Norwich home games, and the first competitive goal at the ground was scored by Norwich's Doug Lochhead. The original stadium was described as the largest construction job in the city since the building of Norwich Castle... "miraculously" built in just 82 days... it was referred to (by club officials) as 'The eighth wonder of the world'.

An aerial photograph from August 1935 shows three sides of open terracing and a covered stand, with a Colman's Mustard advertisement painted on its roof, visible only from the air. The club's association with Colman's has continued into the modern era; in 1997 the club signed a shirt sponsorship deal with the company. The mustard manufacturer's original factory was located adjacent to the stadium in Carrow Road, and the ground was opened by Russell Colman, the President of the club. Inglis describes the early Carrow Road as comprising "a Main Stand, a covered end terrace and two large open banks". The covered terrace was paid for by Captain Evelyn Barclay, the vice-president of Norwich City; it was constructed in time for the opening of the 1937–38 season, and while the original construction is long-gone, the end retains the name of its benefactor.

At this time, the ground's capacity was 38,000, with 10,000 of "the more vociferous of the home and away supporters", in the new Barclay end. The new ground received a royal seal of approval: on 29 October 1938, King George VI watched the home game versus Millwall, the first time a ruling monarch had watched a Second Division match.

Ground developments
Floodlights were erected at the ground in 1956 and the £9,000 cost nearly sent the club into bankruptcy. However, Norwich's success in the 1959 FA Cup secured the financial status of the club and provided sufficient funds for a cover to be built over the South Stand. In 1963, the record was set for attendance for Carrow Road: a crowd of 43,984 watched a sixth round FA Cup match against Leicester City, and the South Stand (now the Jarrold) was covered "soon after".

In the wake of the Ibrox stadium disaster in 1971, safety licences were required by clubs which resulted in the capacity being drastically reduced to around 20,000.

A two-tier terrace was built at the River End and soon after seats began to replace the terraces. By 1979 the stadium had a capacity of 28,392 with seats for 12,675. A fire in 1984 partially destroyed one of the stands which eventually led to its complete demolition and replacement by 1987 of a new City Stand, which chairman Robert Chase described as "Coming to a football match within the City Stand is very much like going to the theatre – the only difference being that our stage is covered with grass".

Conversion to all-seater
After the Hillsborough disaster in 1989 and the subsequent outcome of the Taylor Report in 1990, the stadium was converted to all-seater with three of the corners being filled, the corner between the Barclay and the Jarrold stands being a hotel. Today, Carrow Road is an all-seater stadium, with a capacity of 27,000.

The South Stand was replaced in 2003 when a new 8,000 seat South stand, subsequently renamed the Jarrold Stand was built in its place. The club installed new electronic screen/scoreboards at either end of the stadium during the off-season, 2007. Located behind the goals, they are full colour, with scope for still and moving images and were first utilised in the 5–2 League Cup victory over Barnet in August 2007.

The stadium hosted some of Norwich's finest moments during this time, namely the club's highest ever finish, when they came third in the new FA Premier League in 1993, and when they competed in the following season's UEFA Cup, reaching the third round and knocking out Bayern Munich in the process.

In the summer of 2010, work was undertaken to increase the ground's capacity from 26,018 to 27,000, following promotion from League One. This was achieved by adding a new back row to the Barclay Stand, new front rows to the other three stands, as well as rearranging exit aisles in the Norwich & Peterborough Stand upper tier to make room for new seats.

Electronic advertising hoardings were added to the perimeter of the pitch in time for the 2011-12, when Norwich were playing in the Premier League again following a second successive promotion.


The current stadium consists of four stands; the Barclay (the north-eastern stand), the Norwich and Peterborough Stand (the south-western stand), the Geoffrey Watling City Stand (the north-western stand) and the most recent addition, the Jarrold Stand (the south-eastern stand).

Norwich and Peterborough Stand
Still known as the "River End" among fans, this part of the ground is the closest to the River Wensum. An old stand was demolished in April 1979 and a two-tiered replacement, costing £1.7m, was completed in December 1979. The stand was renamed the Norwich & Peterborough Stand in the 1990s, due to a sponsorship deal with the Norwich and Peterborough Building Society. The stand had an extra 160 seats installed in the summer of 2010.

The Barclay
The Barclay is named after Captain Evelyn Barclay, a former vice-president of the club, who donated the cost of roofing the original stand. This was built in 1937, but demolished in 1992, when a new two-tier structure, modelled on the River End (now the Norwich & Peterborough Stand) was built at a cost of £2.8m (offset by a £2m grant from the Football Trust). The purpose of the rebuilding was "to allow for the implementation of an all-seater stadium as per Lord Chief Justice Taylor's report". Floodlights are supported on both corners of The Barclay and the Norwich & Peterborough stands, which are the ends behind the goals.

Geoffrey Watling City Stand
The single-tiered Geoffrey Watling City Stand was built following a severe fire in its ageing predecessor on 25 October 1984, and to meet the required safety standards demanded of English football following the Hillsborough disaster in 1989. The fire was apparently caused by an employee of the club leaving a three-bar electric fire switched on overnight. The City Stand (as it was named at the time) cost £1.7 million to build and was used for the first time on 30 August 1986 when City hosted Southampton. It was formally opened by the Duchess of Kent on 14 February 1987. The stand was renamed in honour of Norwich City president Geoffrey Watling, who died in 2004. The stand is the smallest of the four in terms of capacity, but includes the Directors' Box, Press Area, and various other hospitality suites.

Thorpe Corner
Where The Barclay extends around to meet the Geoffrey Watling City Stand, is the Thorpe Corner infill, "dubbed 'The Snakepit' by supporters", a term that is even sometimes used in official club reports and by the stadium voice over.

Jarrold Stand
The Jarrold Stand is on the former site of the South Stand, which was named in honour of Sir Arthur South.

It was partially opened for the game against Sheffield United on 31 January 2004, and fully opened for the next home match against West Ham United on 21 February 2004. This was a landmark for the stadium, as it represented the final stand of the original ground to be replaced.

The Jarrold Stand is sponsored by Jarrolds, a local department store. The original four-year sponsorship deal has now been extended through to 2013. The stand is a cantilever, single-tiered, all-seated stand, that can hold up to 8,184 supporters. The Jarrold Stand was "unusual in having not one, but three separate television gantries suspended beneath its largely perspex roof." Work prior to the 2013-14 Barclays Premier league was undertaken to join the three gantries into one larger one. There was also 30 seats added to the back of the stand.

In 2005, further work was undertaken on the stand and it reopened in 2006; the stand now extends around the Norwich and Peterborough Stand corner of the ground.

Visiting supporter accommodation
Accommodation for visiting supporters is provided in the end of the Jarrold Stand closest to The Barclay. The Essential Football Fan describes the away end as follows: "As you would expect from a new stand, the facilities and view of the playing action are good. The normal allocation in this area is 2,500 fans although this can be increased further for cup games. If you are located at the very back of the stand then you can enjoy some fine views of the city."

Aviva Community Stand
The corner infill between the Jarrold and Norwich & Peterborough stands is called the Aviva Community Stand, which was originally built in 2005 and named after sponsors Norwich Union (now Aviva). It seats up to 1,708 fans and also provides extensive facilities for disabled supporters.


  • Football League Second Division / EFL Championship
  • Winners (3): 1971–72, 1985–86, 2003–04, 2018–19, 2020–21
  • Runners-up (1): 2010–11

  • Play-Off Winners - 2015
  • Football League Third Division
  • Winners (2): 1933–34, 2009–10
  • Runners-up (1): 1959–60

  • FA Cup
  • Semi-finals (3): 1959, 1989, 1992

  • League Cup
  • Winners (2): 1962, 1985
  • Runners-up (2): 1973, 1975

Dean Smith

picture of Dean Smith

The Facts

Norwich City Football Club (also known as The Canaries or City) is an English professional football club based in Norwich, Norfolk.

Norwich returned to the Premier League in 2015, having first been promoted to the top flight in 1972.

Norwich have won the League Cup twice, in 1962 and 1985.

The club was founded in 1902.

Since 1935, Norwich have played their home games at Carrow Road and have a long-standing and fierce rivalry with East Anglian rivals Ipswich Town, with whom they have contested the East Anglian Derby 134 times since 1902.

The fans' song "On the Ball, City" is regarded as being the oldest football song in the world which is still in use.

For further information check out their Official website


of wikipedia logo

Notable Players

picture of Steve Bruce

Steve Bruce - 1984 to 1987

picture of Martin Peters Norwich player

Martin Peters - 1975 to 1980

picture of Darren Huckerby Norwich player

Darren Huckerby - 2003 to 2008

picture of Chris Sutton Norwich player

Chris Sutton - 1991 to 1994

picture of Duncan Forbes  Norwich player

Duncan Forbes - 1968 to 1981


picture of Norwich players with League Cup

The history of Norwich City F.C. stretches back to 1902. After a brief period in amateur football, the club spent 15 years as a semi-professional team in the Southern League before admission to The Football League in 1920. For most of the next 50 years, Norwich City F.C. sat in Division Three (South), then the joint lowest tier of the football league, a period that was distinguished by "a thrilling giant-killing sequence which took them to the FA Cup semi-finals" in 1959. Shortly afterwards, the club won its first major trophy, the 1962 League Cup. Norwich finally reached the pinnacle of the league structure in 1972, with their first promotion to the top tier.

Since then, Norwich City has acquired a reputation as a "yo-yo club", with 22 seasons in the top league and 15 in the second tier. It is during this period that the club has achieved most of its greatest distinctions, claiming its second major trophy, the League Cup in 1985, reaching two more FA Cup semi finals, finishing fifth, fourth and third in the top division and beating Bayern Munich in the UEFA Cup.

In the course of its history, Norwich City has survived a number of incidents that threatened its survival, including ousting from amateur football, the need to be re-elected to The Football League and financial crises. Geoffrey Watling, who was to become club Chairman and after whom a stand at the club's stadium, Carrow Road is named, was instrumental in saving the club from bankruptcy, both in the 1950s and 1990s; his father had played a similar role in 1919.

Early years: 1902–1930
Norwich City F.C. was formed following a meeting at the Criterion Cafe in Norwich on 17 June 1902 by a group of friends led by two former Norwich CEYMS players, and played their first competitive match against Harwich & Parkeston, at Newmarket Road on 6 September 1902. Originally, the club was nicknamed the Citizens, and played in light blue and white halved shirts. The popular pastime of canary rearing had given rise to the team's nickname of "The Canaries" by April 1905, and by February 1907 this moniker had been adopted by the national press. The following season, inspired by the nickname, City played for the first time in Canary livery; yellow shirts with green collars and cuffs. A local paper reported that "The Cits are dead but the Canaries are very much alive".

Norwich played for just over two seasons as an amateur club under The Football Association (FA). However, following an FA Commission of inquiry, the club was informed on the last day of 1904 that they had been deemed a professional organisation and hence ineligible to compete in amateur football. The main allegations were:

fees ... paid for the use of a gymnasium and also for the training and massage of players. The sum of £8 was also paid to a player when he left the club. Payments were made to players without a receipt being taken. The club advertised for players ... [the] secretary ... spent considerable sums of money in travelling to other towns in East Anglia ... complete outfits ... were bought for players out of club funds ... there was no adequate system for checking gate money ... travelling expenses were ... excessive.

The club officials, including founding chairman Robert Webster, had to be removed from office and Norwich were to be ousted from the amateur game at the end of the season. The response was swift: at a meeting, just two days later, Wilfrid Lawson Burgess became the first chairman of the professional club and it was resolved to find a place in the professional game. The decision was endorsed at a public meeting in March 1905, a meeting that, significantly, was attended by Nat Whitaker, secretary of the Southern League. He seconded a motion proposed by a local businessman that endorsed the club's "... determination to run a first class professional team". Whitaker actively supported Norwich, as he wanted the League's influence to spread eastwards. On 30 May 1905, they were elected to play in the Southern League, in place of Wellingborough.

With increasing attendances at matches and strict new clauses included in a proposed lease extension, Norwich were forced to leave Newmarket Road and move to a converted disused chalk pit in Rosary Road which became known as "The Nest". Works at The Nest, which included dismantling and moving the stands from Newmarket Road, were complete in time for the start of the 1908–09 season. On 10 December 1917, with football suspended during the First World War and the club facing spiralling debts, City went into voluntary liquidation. The club was officially reformed on 15 February 1919; a key figure in the events was a Mr C Watling, father of future club Chairman, Geoffrey Watling. In May 1920, The Football League formed a Third Division, to which Norwich was admitted for the following season. Their first league fixture, against Plymouth, on 28 August 1920, ended in a 1–1 draw. The club endured a mediocre first decade in the League, finishing no higher than eighth but no lower than 18th. It was during this period that the players began to wear a canary emblem on their shirts. A simple canary badge was first adopted in 1922; a variation is used to this day.

Striving to reach the top level: 1930–1972
The 1930s began with a brush with disaster – the side finished bottom of the League in 1931, but were successful in their bid for re-election. The rest of the decade proved more successful for Norwich, with a club-record victory, 10–2, over Coventry City and promotion to the Second Division as champions in the 1933–34 season under the management of Tom Parker.

With rising crowds and the Football Association raising concerns over the suitability of The Nest, the club considered renovation, but ultimately decided on a move to Carrow Road. The original stadium was terraced on three sides, with only one stand (along Carrow Road) having wooden bench seating and a roof. The inaugural match at the new ground, held on 31 August 1935, against West Ham United, ended in a 4–3 victory for the home team and set a new record attendance of 29,779. A highlight of the fourth season at Carrow Road was the visit of King George VI on 29 October 1938; this was the first occasion a reigning monarch attended a second tier football match. The club was relegated back to the Third Division at the end of the season. Norwich's anguish was exacerbated by the closeness of the relegation fight; having finished second from bottom of Division Two, they were demoted on a goal average difference of just 0.05.

The league was suspended the following season as a result of the outbreak of the Second World War, and professional play did not resume until the 1946–47 season. City finished this and the following season in 21st place, the poor results forcing the club to apply for re-election to the league. The lacklustre performances did not deter the crowds, and, in 1948, Carrow Road attracted its record attendance; 37,863 spectators watched City play Notts County. The club narrowly missed out on promotion under the guidance of manager Norman Low in the early 1950s, but following the return of Tom Parker as manager, Norwich finished bottom of the football league in the 1956–57 season. Events off the field were to overshadow the team's performances as the club faced financial difficulties severe enough to render them non-viable. With debts amounting to more than £20,000, the club was rescued by the formation of a new Board, chaired by Geoffrey Watling and the creation of an appeal fund chaired by the Lord Mayor of Norwich, Arthur South, which raised more than £20,000. For these and other services to the club, both men (now deceased) were later honoured by having stands named after them at Carrow Road.

Archie Macaulay became manager when the club was reformed and he oversaw one of the club's greatest achievements, its run to the semi-final of the 1958–59 FA Cup. Competing as a Third Division side, Norwich defeated two First Division opponents along the way, notably a 3–0 win against the Manchester United "Busby Babes". City lost the semi-final only after a replay against another First Division side, Luton Town. The team of 1958–59—including Terry Bly who scored seven goals in the run, and Ken Nethercott who played most of the second half of one match in goal despite a dislocated shoulder—is today well represented in the club Hall of Fame. The "59 Cup Run" as it is now known locally, "remains as one of the truly great periods in Norwich City's history". Norwich were the third-ever Third Division team to reach the FA Cup semi-final. In the 1959–60 season, Norwich were promoted to the Second Division after finishing second to Southampton, and achieved a fourth place finish in the 1960–61 season. From 1960, Norwich spent the next 12 seasons in the second tier, with finishes of fourth in 1961 and sixth in 1965 being among the most notable.

Picture of Norwich Keeper Kevin Keelan - 1963 to 1980 In 1962, Ron Ashman guided Norwich to their first trophy, defeating Rochdale 4–0 on aggregate in a two-legged final to win the League Cup. Norwich finally achieved promotion from Division Two when they finished as champions in the 1971–72 season under manager Ron Saunders; Norwich City had reached the highest level of English football for the first time.

First division yo-yo: 1972–1992
Norwich made their first appearance at Wembley Stadium in 1973, losing the League Cup final 1–0 to Tottenham Hotspur. Relegation to the Second Division in 1974 resulted in the resignation of Saunders and the appointment of John Bond. A highly successful first season saw promotion back to the First Division and another visit to Wembley, again in the League Cup final, this time losing 1–0 to Aston Villa. They remained in the top-tier of English football for another six seasons. The club finished tenth in the 1975–76 season; at the time their highest ever finish. Under Bond though, the club never managed to qualify for European competitions. Off the field, during Bond's tenure, a new River End Stand was constructed at Carrow Road. Bond resigned during the 1980–81 season and the club were relegated, but bounced back the following season after finishing third.

The 1984–85 season was one of mixed fortunes for the club; a fire gutted the old Main Stand on 25 October 1984 but on the pitch, under Ken Brown's management, they reached the final of the Milk Cup at Wembley Stadium. They defeated local rivals Ipswich Town in the semi-final. In the final, they beat Sunderland 1–0, but in the league both Norwich and Sunderland were relegated to the second tier of English football. Norwich had qualified for a place in the UEFA Cup, but were denied their first foray into European competition when English club sides were banned, following the Heysel Stadium disaster. City made an immediate return to the top flight by winning the Second Division championship in the 1985–86 season. High league placings in the First Division in 1986–87 and 1988–89 would have been enough for UEFA Cup qualification, but the ban on English clubs was still in place. They also had good cup runs during his period, reaching the FA Cup semi-finals in 1989 and again in 1992.

Europe, rise and fall: 1992–1999
In 1992–93, the inaugural season of the English Premier League, Norwich City led the league for much of the season, having been among the pre-season favourites for relegation, and were eight points clear of the field shortly before Christmas, before faltering in the final weeks to finish third behind the champions, Manchester United, and Aston Villa.

They had shown that they were a force to be reckoned with from the very first day of the Premier League season, achieving an impressive 4–2 away win over an Arsenal side who were among the pre-season title favourites in a race finally won by Manchester United. This was a big surprise not least to the media and pundits who had tipped Norwich for a season of struggle.

The following season Norwich played in the UEFA Cup for the first time, defeating Vitesse Arnhem of the Netherlands 3–0 in the first round. In the second round, they faced Bayern Munich of Germany. Norwich won the tie 3–2 on aggregate; their 2–1 victory in Munich earning them a place in history, as the only English team to beat Bayern Munich in the Olympic Stadium. The Independent described the win in Munich as "the pinnacle of Norwich City's history". Reflecting on the shock result, Four Four Two wrote "The news that Norwich had gone 2–0 up in the Olympic Stadium seemed frankly surreal." Norwich's cup run was ended by Italy's Internazionale, who defeated them 2–0 over two legs. Mike Walker's success at Norwich attracted attention and, in January 1994, he left the club to take charge of Everton. Walker's replacement was first team coach John Deehan, who was assisted by Gary Megson, then still a player. Deehan led the club to 12th place in the 1993–94 season in the Premier League.

During the 1994 close season, the club sold 21-year-old striker Chris Sutton to Blackburn Rovers for a then British record fee of £5 million. By Christmas 1994, Norwich City were seventh in the Premiership and were therefore challenging for a return to the UEFA Cup. But, following a serious injury to goalkeeper Bryan Gunn, the club's performance nosedived; with just one win in their final 20 Premiership fixtures, Norwich plummeted to 20th place and relegation to the second tier of English football. Deehan resigned just before relegation was confirmed and his deputy, Megson, took over as temporary manager until the end of the season. Martin O'Neill, who had taken Wycombe Wanderers from the Conference to the Second Division with successive promotions, was appointed as Norwich City manager in the summer of 1995. He lasted just six months in the job before resigning after a dispute with chairman Robert Chase over Chase's refusal to permit O'Neill to spend significant sums on strengthening the squad.

Soon after O'Neill's resignation, Chase stepped down after protests from supporters, who complained that he kept selling the club's best players and was to blame for the relegation. Indeed, between 1992 and January 1995, Norwich had disposed of a number of key attacking players: Robert Fleck (for £2.1M), Ruel Fox (for £2.25M), Chris Sutton (for £5M), Efan Ekoku (£0.9M) and Mark Robins (£1M). Nearly 40 years after being instrumental in saving the club from bankruptcy, Geoffrey Watling bought Chase's majority shareholding. Gary Megson was appointed Norwich manager on a temporary basis for the second time in eight months. Megson remained in charge until the end of the season before leaving the club. Just four seasons after finishing third in the Premiership and beating Bayern Munich in the UEFA Cup, Norwich had finished 16th in Division One.

English television cook Delia Smith and her husband Michael Wynn-Jones took over the majority of Norwich City's shares from Watling in 1996, and Mike Walker was re-appointed as the club's manager. He was unable to repeat the success achieved during his first spell and was sacked two seasons later with Norwich mid-table in the First Division. His successor Bruce Rioch lasted two seasons and departed in the summer of 2000, with promotion yet to be achieved.

New millennium and centenary: 2000–2010
Rioch's successor, Bryan Hamilton, lasted in the job for six months before he resigned with the club 20th in the First Division, and in real danger of relegation to the third tier of English football for the first time since the 1960s. The new appointee was Nigel Worthington, who had been Hamilton's assistant manager. Worthington's time as Norwich manager was one of peaks and troughs, with mid-table comfort a rarity. In his first part-season, he successfully steered the team away from the threat of relegation. The following season, Norwich exceeded expectations and reached the play-off final, losing to Birmingham City on penalties.

Norwich City celebrated its centenary in 2002. Among the celebrations and events, was an initiative to create a Hall of Fame, to honour players, coaches, managers, directors and executives who have "made the greatest contribution to the club in its long history both on and off the pitch". Initially, 100 significant figures from the club's history were honoured; 25 were nominated by the club and a further 75 were subsequently chosen by a fan vote. A further 10 members were inducted in 2006, elected by the club's supporters.

After a season of consolidation, in 2003–04 Worthington led the club to the First Division title, a success achieved by a margin of eight points and Norwich returned to the top flight for the first time in nine years. For much of the 2004–05 season, the club struggled in the Premiership, with Daily Star journalist Brian Woolnough commenting after a 4–0 defeat at Chelsea that the Canaries were "gutless," that they would "stink the place out" with Premiership performances of a similar ilk, and that he "Hopes they go down, and good riddance." But the team staged a remarkable comeback in the final weeks of the season, the catalyst being victory against Manchester United 2–0. Norwich, who had not won in months, suddenly went on a run, securing 13 points out of 18. With the bottom three sides to be automatically relegated, on the last day of the season, the club were fourth from bottom and a win would therefore have kept them in top flight football, but a 6–0 away defeat to Fulham condemned them to relegation.

The club was expected to make a quick return to the Premiership in the 2005–06 season, but a terrible first four months to the campaign saw City fall as low as 18th in The Championship. Worthington had won promotion just two seasons earlier, but "by October, following some inept performances and bad results, the fans started to turn on Nigel Worthington". Dean Ashton was sold for a club-record £7M, approximately a 100% profit on the fee they had paid just one year earlier. Half of Ashton's fee (£3.5M) was immediately reinvested in the purchase of Welsh striker Robert Earnshaw, who helped the Canaries' revival to a ninth place finish. Worthington made just one permanent signing in the close season, and when a poor run of form ensued, leaving the club in 17th place in the Championship, Worthington was dismissed. First team coach Martin Hunter acted as caretaker manager for a fortnight before former City player Peter Grant left West Ham United to become the new manager.

Grant brought in his fellow Scot, Jim Duffy, as his assistant, and managed to lift the side to finish 16th in the league. During the 2007 close season, Grant brought in nine players, however ten players, including Earnshaw, departed and Darren Huckerby caused controversy by criticising the club for selling their best players. When the 2007–08 season opened with only two Norwich wins by 9 October 2007, Peter Grant left the club by "mutual consent". Jim Duffy took over as caretaker manager for three games, losing them all. On 30 October, former Newcastle United boss Glenn Roeder was confirmed as the new manager. Roeder released a number of players, largely replacing them with inexperienced loan signings. Results improved enormously, lifting the club from five points adrift at the foot of the table to a comfortable mid-table position.

Following a poor first half of the 2008–09 campaign it was announced on 14 January 2009, that Roeder had been relieved of his first team duties after 60 games in charge of the club, and just 20 victories. The appointment of Bryan Gunn as temporary manager did not prevent relegation to the third tier of English league football (League One), a level the club had not played at since 1960, at the end of the 2008–09 Championship season.

Norwich started their League One campaign on 8 August 2009 at home to fellow East Anglians Colchester United. They were widely expected to return swiftly to the Championship, however they suffered a shock 1–7 defeat. This was their worst home defeat in their 107-year history, beating the previous record, a 1–6 loss to Bournemouth and Boscombe Athletic in 1946. The fans' displeasure was obvious. Gunn was sacked six days later and his assistant Ian Butterworth was placed in temporary charge. The club moved swiftly to appoint the man who had masterminded the downfall of Gunn, Colchester manager Paul Lambert. He oversaw a turnaround in fortunes to lead them to promotion back to The Championship as League One champions, during a season that included a 16 game unbeaten run that included just two draws.

Norwich owner Delia Smith holds the play-off trophy up to the fans A new era: 2010 – present
Norwich's return to the second tier saw two victories in the Old Farm derby over Ipswich Town. A Grant Holt hat-trick set City on their way to a 4–1 home win in November, which preceded a 5–1 victory in the return fixture at Portman Road in April. Promotion from the Championship marked a return to the Premier League following a six-year absence. Having been in the top six for the majority of the season, they were the Championship's highest scorers, ending the season as runners-up on 84 points – 4 points behind title-winners QPR.

When Norwich's new management was appointed at the start of the 2009–10 season, it inherited a team twice relegated in the previous five seasons and a business saddled with debt. At that stage a turnaround team was put together from Lloyds Banking Group and Deloitte. The turnaround has resulted in operational profitability, consistent performance and successive promotions back to the Premier League. Activities include the disposal of non-core property assets, a new equity investment and a financial restructuring agreement with lenders for all debt to be repaid within five years.

Norwich finished 2nd in the championship, 12th and 11th in the 2010–11 , 2011–12 and 2012–13 premier league seasons but were relegated after finishing 18th in the 2013–14 season.

The club was forced to make a late change to their opponents during a pre-season tour of Italy, and despite advertising that they had played the Italian Serie D club Vallée d'Aoste, and defeating them 13–0, it was subsequently discovered that the opponents were a selection of amateurs from the region.

After finishing third in the 2014-15 Championship season, Norwich won the Championship promotion playoffs convincingly to gain promotion to the English Premier League at the first time of asking. Norwich will play in the English Premier League again in the 2015-16 season.

On 11th May 2016, with one match remaining, Norwich were declared relegated once again after results elsewhere sealed their Premier League fate.

The following season started successfully, with the club sitting top of the Championship in mid October. However, a poor run of form and results followed, which included five consecutive defeats, and saw the team slide to as low as twelfth in the table. On 10 March 2017, Alex Neil was sacked by the club, with first team coach Alan Irvine placed in caretaker charge for the remainder of the season, which saw the club finish eighth in the Championship.

Rebuild under Farke and Premier League return (2017–present)
On 25 May 2017, the club appointed German coach Daniel Farke as head coach, becoming the first foreign head coach of the club in its 114-year history. Under Farke, the club underwent a rebuilding process that saw the team adopt a fast-paced, possession-focused brand of football reminiscent of Farke’s predecessor Dortmund side.

However, Norwich would finish the 2017-18 season in a disappointing 14th place. Despite a slow start, the following the season was far more successful and the team would spend most of the season at the top of the table - helped on by top scorer Teemu Pukki.

Following a 2-1 win over Blackburn Rovers, the club were promoted back to the Premier League after a 3 year absence.

Teemu Pukki was awarded with the EFL Player of the Season whilst academy product Max Aarons received the EFL Young Player of the Season. Jamal Lewis joined Pukki and Aarons in the EFL Team of the Season and Daniel Farke was shortlisted for the EFL Manager of the Season.

Norwich won the 2018-19 EFL Championship title on 5 May 2019 in the last game of the season, with a 2-1 away victory at Aston Villa, finishing five points clear of second-placed Sheffield United.

Following a difficult 2019-20 Premier League campaign, Norwich City finished bottom and were subsequently relegated.

In 2020-21, Norwich were once again promoted to the Premier League after winning the Championship title.

On Saturday 6th November 2021, Farke was sacked by Norwich.

On 15th November 2021, Norwich City confirmed the appointment of Dean Smith as the club’s new head coach on a two-and-a-half-year contract, together with assistant head coach Craig Shakespeare.