Ed Seaman’s Norwich City column: Jacob has been our shining light
In a season of very few genuine positives at Norwich City, Jacob Murphy’s breakthrough has certainly been among the highlights.
Although the 22-year-old still has plenty of room to improve, the opener against Barnsley last weekend was his ninth league goal of the season (tenth in all comps), which when combined with six assists makes for a highly impressive return.
Yes he has tired in recent weeks and at times has struggled to reproduce his form away from home, but his potential is undeniable.
It could be argued that he deserves more support from the Carrow Road faithful.
Often young players are criticised for their lack of a final product, but to put his exploits into context, only Bradley Johnson (2014/15) and Wes Hoolahan (09/10 and 10/11) have reached double figures from midfield, in terms of league goals, since 2003/04.
And his fine season has seen Jacob rewarded with a first, much deserved, call-up to the England U21 squad, who take on Germany tonight (7pm) and Denmark on Monday (6pm).
While with an entirely selfish Norwich hat on, I hope he doesn’t showcase his talents too much, hopefully Jacob is given a chance to replicate some of his form on an international stage.
You know what, for all the talk of this season being finished, last weekend’s win, albeit in a very uninspiring manner, keeps the club’s slim play-off hopes alive.
While I must add I still think it is a highly unlikely scenario, with eight games remaining, five points is a gap that can be bridged – as the saying goes, stranger things have happened in football.
But of course that would require the club’s new manager, whenever he arrives, to hit the ground running, starting with two very difficult trips to Aston Villa and Huddersfield when we return after the international break.