When Norwich kick off their campaign away to Fulham next month, they will be realistically hoping for a kick start to their season. That day, of course, will mark 20 years since Norwich made their Premier League debut away to another London side on a truly momentous afternoon. Whatever happens on August 18th, it cannot possibly be as dramatic - or gratifying - as the events of 15th August 1992.
On that fine summer's day, Norwich lined up against George Graham's defensively sublime Arsenal, whose solid back-line had led them to two championships in the previous four years. The Canaries, despite having caused a few surprises in previous seasons, were expecting the sternest of tests at Highbury, and they certainly got one in the first half.
Arsenal's set-piece proficiency was on display once again as Nigel Winterburn took a left-footed inswinger from deep on the right. The ball curled gloriously onto the balding head of very aptly-named Steve Bould, who glanced in the Gunners' first Premier League goal. The attacking prowess of Arsenal's backline was soon in evidence again as Winterburn's opposite sideback, BBC pundit Lee Dixon, raced down the right to play in the hefty Kevin Campbell, who slotted low past Bryan Gunn for 2-0.
After 70 minutes, Arsenal seemed home and dry, but a delightful free-kick from David Phillips curled between two defenders in the Arsenal wall and straight onto the formidable head of the on-running substitute Mark Robins, who scored on his debut. What happened next was one of the most astonishing turnarounds in Premier League history.
It began when international goalkeeper David Seaman flapped hopelessly at a right-wing cross from Jeremy Goss, and watched in agony as Phillips nipped in behind him to score. No sooner had that happened when Phillips returned to his regular midfield duties with aplomb, curling a through ball into the feet of lightning-quick Ruel Fox, who toe-poked past Seaman for 3-2.
And there was even time for Tony Adams to miskick a simple long-punt heading towards him, allowing Robins to lob David Seaman from 30 yards in the last minute. That season, Norwich were streets ahead of Arsenal in every department. At Craven Cottage next month, they will be hoping to at least keep pace with the Gunners at the season's start.