Last season, Norwich City were relegated to the third tier of English football for the first time in 50 years. Yesterday, in the first match of the season, Bryan Gunn's team managed to make a bad situation worse. They were beaten 7-1 by Colchester, the worst home defeat in the club's 107-year history.
Back in May, with Gunn about to make the step up from caretaker manager to full-time boss, I wrote:
I can't be confident in a manager who sends a team out in a must-win game and sees them three goals down within 30 minutes. Ultimately, the responsibility for that lies with the players but it raises concerns about Gunn's ability to prepare and motivate his team.
Those concerns are more serious today. Twenty-two minutes into yesterday's match Norwich were four goals down. Gunn needs to learn to organise and motivate a team and he needs to learn quickly. If he doesn't he won't be in the job very long.
Last night Gunn said: "You have to win the right to get the fans' approval here."
Approval? Do you know how far from approval you are? Get a map and find Norwich. Imagine Norwich is approval. Now imagine you're on the moon. That's how far from approval you are.
Next Saturday Norwich are away to an impressive, newly-promoted Exeter. Let's set some benchmarks for success in that match. First, if we must lose - and I fear we must - let's try to lose by fewer than six goals. Second, let's try really hard to still be in the match after 30 minutes. Does that sound manageable?
Forget "approval", Bryan. Just try to get a team out that isn't a laughing stock come the final whistle.