by Thomas Rooney
First of all, I would like to clarify that I am not one of those people who goes to the football just to criticise certain players. Every club has them. Football fans who love to simply shout ‘Get him off’ or ‘He’s rubbish’ (or similar!) at the game after paying £25 to get in exist throughout the country. It has, of course, happened at Carrow Road for many years. Chris Llewellyn, Ian Henderson and Andy Hughes were all victims of the ‘boo boys’. Even more talented players who achieved good things at the club like Matty Svensson and Iwan Roberts received a fair amount of criticism from sections of the crowd at some stage.
My point? Well I think Matty Pattison is likely to be the latest victim and although I won’t be booing every touch he makes, I can see what the criticism he gets is based upon. He simply can’t keep hold of a football. So often, during the end of last season and in pre-season so far, he has got the ball only to lose it straight away. He is set to win promotion to the Andy Hughes league of giving the ball away if he isn’t careful. Or should that be relegation? I’m not sure.
I hope I am proved wrong, but I simply can’t wee what role Pattison is going to get in the team this year. I’m not even sure what his best position is. Maybe that is his problem. If given a choice I would say that he would select central midfield as the place to play. However, with Mark Fotheringham, Sammy Clingan and Darrel Russell all ahead of him in the pecking order, this might not happen. Pattison – who is left footed – is also unlikely to fit in on the left wing where Wes Hoolahan will be operating. Then, the friendly against Colchester – where he was substituted at half time – proved that he can’t play right wing, so I’m no expert but that seems to be all midfield positions ruled out.
I can’t talk about him without mentioning the Tottenham game I suppose. He was like a fish out of water playing at left back and although it’s unfair to criticise him too much for playing out of position, it probably highlighted his lack of talent as a footballer. Stick Darrel Russell at left back and I think he would do a job, but sadly – not Pattison.
One thing that does need to be remembered is that he is only 21-years-old. That’s why I am sceptical about completely writing him off just yet. Even though, admittedly, I have pretty much done that in my comments so far! What his age does do is give him the chance to improve, give him the chance to learn how to pass a football. Even though, he should probably have grasped that by now. Maybe that highlights why he is, at the moment, not good enough for Norwich City football club. Time will tell what sort of a future he has, but I certainly won’t be placing any of my football betting money on him winning player of the season this year.