Former Norwich City sporting director Stuart Webber has admitted he can understand criticism from the club’s fanbase, even if he doesn’t necessarily agree with it.
The director of football has been speaking to Kicker in Germany regarding his career so far, including his departure from Norwich earlier this year.
He had been sporting director at Carrow Road since 2017 after arriving from Huddersfield Town, where he had enjoyed big success that culminated in a spell in the Premier League.
Webber managed to repeat that with Norwich, eventually building a team that finished first in the Championship in 2018 and were promoted back to the Premier League.
They finished 20th the following season before another first placed finish and promotion, before then dropping back to the second flight after another disappointing 20th placed finish.
They’ve not been back since, finishing 13th last season in a poor campaign that saw questions asked and Webber in the firing line for the work he was doing behind the scenes.
His exit has not stopped the criticism or analysis from the Norwich fanbase, and he admits he can see both sides of the argument.
“Norwich asked me to continue working until my successor was found and hired,” he said.
“I complied with this request. I’ve been here for six and a half years and now I’m ready for a new challenge. I’ll be 40 in January – and it’s time for a change.
“You know what football fans are like. You need someone to blame, that’s okay. It’s better to blame me than the coach, the players or the club management.
“But at the end of the day, when people look back on my time at Norwich City, they will realise that Norwich has become a very different football club in the last six and a half years.
“We won two titles; we built a new training centre that now has the standard of a Champions League contender. And we helped 21 players from our academy make their debut in the professional team.
“Absolutely,” he added when asked if the situation was similar to Huddersfield.
“Norwich was also languishing in the Championship, with no money and no ambition to get promoted again. I also thought let’s do it like Huddersfield again. We embarked on the same journey with Daniel, and I am proud that we had the same result in 2019: promotion to the Premier League.
“It was a special time with Daniel and David. Both gave clubs the opportunity to open up new markets for player transfers – and created a role model for many clubs in England.”