It seems as though right now, there is very little that can stop Norwich in their attempts to secure an immediate promotion back to the Premier League this season.
Saturday afternoon’s convincing 2-0 win over Cardiff City means that the Canaries have now won five games on the bounce, and have lost just one of their last 16 league games, winning 12 in that time.
What that means is that Daniel Farke’s side currently sit top of the Championship table, five points clear of second-placed Bournemouth, and more importantly, seven clear of the play-off places.
That success has been all the more impressive, by the fact that Norwich done so much of that recent good work, without one of their key players during the early part of the season.
It’s now seven games since Tim Krul was last able to start a match for Norwich, with a thigh injury suffered in his side’s 3-2 victory at Stoke City keeping him out of action for the past month.
Given the string of match-winning saves and performances produced by Krul at the start of the campaign, you feel news of his injury the club’s supporters fearing the worst when it was revealed.
But with Norwich pressing on in the absence of their undisputed number one it seems they now have a clear mandate to oversee the departure of one player when the January transfer window opens in little more than a weeks time.
In the absence of Krul over the past month, it has been the veteran Michael McGovern who Norwich have turned to to fill in between the posts in their push for promotion, meaning you feel that a loan move for 19-year-old Daniel Barden ought to be on the cards in January.
The young shot-stopper, who made his senior debut in the Canaries’ 3-1 defeat at Luton in the first round of the Carabao Cup at the start of the campaign, does seem to be highly-rated around Carrow Road, with some fans even calling him to be given the nod to replace Krul ahead of McGovern.
Ultimately however, that did not happen, with Barden yet to add to that sole senior appearance in the cup at the start of the campaign.
As a result, with McGovern having now seemingly established himself as the first choice back-up to Krul, and the big Dutchman himself closing in on a return to action, it is hard to see the teenager getting too many first-team opportunities in the near future.
With that in mind, it would make sense for Norwich to look to send Barden out on loan in the January transfer window, in search of more regular game time.
That way, Barden would be able to build on that promise he has already shown with some more regular first-team experience, which would stand him in good stead to step in at Carrow Road in the not too distant future, given that at 32 and 36-years-old respectively, both Krul and McGovern are at the opposite stage of their careers to Barden.
Should that happen, then the improvement Barden ought to see in his own game from the challenge playing regular football, at a higher level in the senior game, would put him in a much better position to challenge for a first-team spot in Daniel Farke’s side in the future, and thus give the fans that chance they want to see for him.
Indeed, with fellow young ‘keeper Jon McCracken – who has been featured consistently for Norwich at youth level recently, with Barden on in and around the senior side – also on hand to fill in should one of Krul or McGovern pick up another knock, there should not to be too much concern about allowing Barden to leave Carrow Road on a temporary basis.
It seems therefore, that as Norwich move forward in the race for promotion, a loan deal away from the club in January, ought to help Barden move forward with his own career, so that he can then return to help the Canaries continue on in the right direction in the future.